What an awesome morning for a run! Can’t believe it was actually 49˚ at 5:45am this morning.
Our planned group run was a 10+ miler that included 4.5-miles through the streets of Belle Meade and then the 5.8-mile loop in Percy Warner Park. My schedule from John called for 14 to 16 miles at easy pace with a few quicker miles in middle.
To keep from having to run all of the extra at the end I started a bit early and got in just over 1.5-miles before starting with the group. During this short warm up, and the group run through Belle Meade, I just never felt comfortable. My legs felt heavy and I couldn’t find a good rhythm. Once we got back to the entrance of Percy Warner we made a very brief fluid stop and then headed onto the 5.8.
Even though it is short, the 5.8 is quite challenging with well over 1,000 ft. of total elevation gain. Since I had not been feeling great up to this point I was a little apprehensive about how things would go during this section. However, once we started the first climb I started feeling a lot better.
Not hard to tell where we entered the park!
Since I was feeling better, and my schedule called for some quicker miles in the middle, I picked up the pace a bit beginning in mile 8. Prior to this point my average was somewhere around 8:50, but my splits dropped to 8:02, 8:36 (BIG Hill), 7:52, 7:51, and 7:43 for miles 8 through 12. Near the end of the 5.8-mile loop I took a bit of a detour to add a little extra mileage in the park so I wouldn’t have as much extra to do in Belle Meade after getting back to the main gates.
Once I got back into Belle Meade my legs were feeling heavy again so I decided not to try and push up to the top end of my scheduled range. At the gates I was just over 12-miles so I ran a couple of easy cool down miles in Belle Meade to finish with 14.3 total miles.
On a side note, we have a new guy named Rob that has been running with our group for the past few weeks and is obviously very fast. Today I got to spend some time talking to him and asked him about his lifetime PRs. His half marathon PR is 1:06, and his full marathon PR is 2:27 (Won Rocket City Marathon in Huntsville)!!! WOW! It is very cool to be able to run with someone of that caliber. He was very encouraging to me about my Quest for Boston, and even told me that thinks I’ve got the ability to go well below 3 hours. Not sure that I have that level of confidence in myself quite yet, but it is always nice to hear that type of encouragement.
Anyway, it was a good morning and a good run with the group!