Monday, August 4, 2008

The elusive eight

Ta daaaa! I finally set a new distance PR last week. On Thursday I did an 8 miler on the treadmill. Woo hoo. It's about damn time! I have to say I can't believe how great I felt for the majority of it. Of course, I had to stop a few times to reset the treadmill; I knew it would shut down after 30 minutes so I had to beat it to the punch. My initial plan was to do 2.5 miles, 2.5 miles, then 3 miles. The plan was briefly thwarted when someone asked me to buzz them into the computer room. I got off the treadmill, forgetting to look at how far I'd gone. When I got back, naturally, all of the info had been erased and the counters were all at zero. Blast! I knew I'd been on for just over 11 minutes so it was safe to assume I'd gone at least a mile. So I went for 2.75 mi, then another 2.75, then 1.5. Around the 6 mile mark, I was mentally fawning all over myself, congratulating my mind and body on so flawlessly executing the (almost) 8 miles. I was imagining blogging about it and writing, "I could've easily gone 10 miles! It was SO EASY." No sooner was I through with that that everything felt like it came to a screeching halt. The last mile and a half felt like it would never ever ever ever end. I kept looking down at the display thinking, "No way. I must've gone more than .03 mi. It feels like ages since I last checked!" I kept trying to focus on my songs to make the time go by. "Ok, 2 more songs and I should be done." Finally the end came. It took me 1 hr 24 minutes. I felt really good when it was over. I was proud and excited and a bit exhausted. I was very happy that I'd managed to ignore the immense urge to skip the run and put it off for another day. I always have those thoughts. The ones where you think about running and then immediately try to dream up excuses as to why you cannot run, why you have to put it off for another time: "I have to load the dishwasher." "I feel like I'm going to throw up." "I have to finish my sudoku puzzle and then make my bed." etc etc. It all worked out, I'm happy to say. The weird thing is that my legs didn't seem to be sore until 2 days after the run. My body appears to have a delayed reaction to these long runs. My hips were a bit sore on Friday but my legs didn't hurt until Saturday and Sunday. Anyone else have this problem?

Let me back up a minute. I planned on running with the local running club last Tuesday night. I noticed on the website that they met in the parking lot at a particular Kroger location at 6. As six o'clock drew closer I felt surges of nervous excitement. I was looking forward to meeting fellow runners and maybe making some new friends. I suited up and drove to the Kroger, arriving about 15 minutes early. I sat for awhile, talking on the phone and looking around. I figured it would be easy to find a group of people dressed in running shorts and t-shirts. WRONG! I drove around the perimeter at least 3 times and never found them. How difficult should it be to find a group of runners in a parking lot?! The moral of the story is to get more information when attempting something like this. I should've called to get specifics and make sure the run wasn't cancelled or anything. So I will probably get some details and give it another try tomorrow. I got home and did 2 gut-wrenching miles on the treadmill. The oven roasted chicken sub and grape Fanta did not agree with my choice of post dinner activity. Ugh.

On Saturday Dave and I decided to do some exploring. We went to the Radnor Lake Natural Area, just south of Nashville. It was absolutely stunning! We hiked for about an hour and a half and had so much fun. There is a paved trail that winds along the lake, and then to the right of the trail were hills with more primitive unpaved trails that ranged in difficulty. We were plugging along on one of the hilly trails when all of a sudden Dave (who was about 5 ft behind me) said in a very stern voice, "Jen. STOP. TURN AROUND VERY SLOWLY AND WALK BACK TO ME." I stopped and followed his instructions, freaked out that there was a bear in the trees up ahead or a huge spider web I was about to walk through or God knows what else. When I reached him I managed to choke out, "What? What is it?" "It's a deer" he says. "A DEER? Are you friggin kidding me?! I thought it was something that was going to ferociously attack me! Not a damn deer!" He tried to explain that he'd seen videos of "deer gone wild" on tv where people are attacked by deer. I figure the people must've done something to provoke them b/c although I'm no deer expert, I find it hard to imagine a deer charging at someone for no reason. I turned back around and saw a momma deer laying in the tall grass to the right of the trail. Not exactly life-threatening at first glance. It's crazy b/c I would've walked right by it! I had to laugh though after I calmed down and thought about how funny it was that Dave was trying to protect me from a lazy deer lounging in the grass. He wanted to turn around but I wanted to keep going. "Pleeeease Dave. Pleeease. I'm sure she won't attack. Let's just keep going." He acquiesced and as we continued our hike we ended up seeing 25 more deer. That was not a typo. Twenty-five more deer! How crazy is that? Including 2 fawn. It was incredible. Those deer were not scared of us. They were just doing their own thing. At times we were 10 feet from them. It was very cool! I can't wait to go there and hike again. I can only imagine how beautiful it will be in the fall.

It was a really good weekend. For this week, I'm trying to decide whether to do 9 mile or skip ahead to 10 for my long run. I guess I'll just play it by ear.


Rachel said...

Congrats on the 8 miles Jen! That is awesome! Funny deer story. I was thinking there was a bear ahead or something as well.

Emily said...

I love how you sprinkle in fun stories about your life with your running update.

You are setting new records with every step. I think that always feels good. Just one more step can be that much closer to the furthest you have ever run!

I appreciate reading your treadmill vs. outside reports because it's a whole new perspective and I like hearing both sides.

*aron* said...

woo hoo for the 8 miler! awesome job! dont know how you do that on the t-mill so even more awesome job!

sounds like a great weekend... hope you can find the group next time!

Jenn said...

Way to go on the 8 miler . . .on the treadmill no less. That requires some serious mental stamina.

Watch out for those deers!

MissAllycat said...

An 8-mile treadmill run??

*Bows down*

I'm not worthy!!

Anonymous said...

Great job Jen! Did you take in some Goo? Ha, ha, ha. Still laughing over that one.

Auntie Patsy

SueBob said...

Wow, having to reset that treadmill repeatedly would drive me crazy!

Congrats on the 8 mile PR...doesn't it feel great to hit a new milestone? Even if it hurts a little getting there...

Tammie said...

Hey, awesome job on the 8 miler. And all on a treadmill. Whoa girl, you rock! I laughed at your deer story! I see them all the time when I go running and still wonder if they're going to charge me! I mean, I'm usually running at them, and that's not good. Oh well -- they're used to people and so not afraid. I wish the ones who come into me yard every night and eat the tomatoes off my plants would be afraid though! Grrr!

Emily said...

Thanks for the comments about my lists! I was bored at work so was able to get a lot of blogging done :)

Here are two surfing sites I was looking at that would be sooooo cool if I had an extra 4 grand lying around. -- Costa Rica would be amazing but seems pricier than Hawaii

Sure there are many other camps. I'll probably go somewhere on the continent (when I go), but oh, the tropics would be lovely!

ana said...

ha! i love the deer story.

& yay for the 8 miles! SHEESH. :P

"If you think you can, or think you can't, you're right."

~Henry Ford