Have I mentioned that I officially signed up for the Route 66 half-marathon? Did I also mention that it is on my 30th birthday? Oh yes, and I’m going to complete that bad boy in under two hours.
I’ve wanted to hit this goal for a long time. Unfortunately for me, I have a hard time doing speedwork. I like to run distance, and I like to run it at a pace that is more or less comfortable for me. But turning 30 is a big deal, so I figured I should have some sort of special something that I do that day. Of course, it needed to be a race!
Technically, to run a half marathon in 1:59:59, you’ve gotta keep a 9:10 pace throughout. I’m shooting for a 9:00 pace average throughout, just to give myself that 10 second bit of leeway. So I started actually paying attention to my pace recently. When I first started and I was averaging a 9:40 mile I thought perhaps I had set a goal that was a bit too lofty. I know 40 secs per mile doesn’t sound like a lot, but you try carving 40 seconds off your mile and keep that up for 13.1 miles. That’s 8 minutes and 45 seconds that I had to delete from my time! Thankfully, the weather cooled off. Fall. Prime running season. Perfect running temps throughout the whole day. Cooler weather seems to make it easier to run fast. Yesterday I averaged an 8:52 mile for 5 miles. Slowest mile was 9:09, fastest was 8:24. Not too shabby, riiiiight?
So now I have to figure out how I keep that pace for another 8.1 miles. I have 4 weeks and 4 days to figure it out…so I’m guessing I’d better get to figurin’. Thursday I’m going to run 7 or 8 and see how I keep the pace up, and I think that will be pretty telling.
What else am I doing other than running to help me…well, run? Eating light. It’s always easier to run faster when you’re lighter, so I’m hoping to drop a few more pounds before race day. This means that beer I had on the patio at lunch yesterday will be my last for a month (sad face). I also started hitting up spin class again, which I LOVE but have been completely blowing off for the past couple of months. Getting used to that tiny little seat on my booty is never fun, but it only took about one class for my body to go ohhhhhh yeah, I remember this. I’ve also started running the 2 ish miles to the gym I teach Zumba at a couple times a week. 2 miles is great for a half mile warm up, a 1 mile ridiculously-fast-pushing-it to-the-limits-how-fast-can-I-go-without-dropping speedwork mile, and a half mile at my normal pace. After practicing Zumba choreography for an hour and lifting for 20 or 30 minutes, the 2 miles back home usually ends being more like a slow jog.
The weather also got REALLY cold this week, so it looks like I need to make a trip to Academy Outdoor to pick up some cold weather running clothes. Yesssssss, an excuse to shop!!!