The Run I've Been Waiting For

So, since my last running update, I successfully rested for a (pretty) solid 10 days. 

That's actually huge for me and was shockingly not too torturous considering for 4 of those days I was sick and couldn't imagine running anyway. 

Somewhere in those 10 days I had a verrrrry slow jogging November Project workout in San Francisco (I picked my damn hotel based on the fact that it was .8 miles from NP, there was no way I was going to miss it).


And then on the 11th day I ran 3 miles to November Project NYC's workout to see how I was feeling and whether or not I thought I could run the 25K I was registered to run on March 1 on Long Island. 

(More NP fun)

Friday's 3 miles felt lovely, and so I headed to Long Island Saturday night, telling myself I would see how Sunday's race went - no expectations. No getting my hopes up. If I didn't finish all 15.5 miles, fine. This was a long run, not a race. I half expected to go out, take a few strides, feel pain in my shins, and retire to the car while Peter finished. 

Instead, I cautiously began to realize I was feeling...great? Peter kept telling me we were pushing 8:00 and I was trying to slow down but it just wasn't happening. At one point I even said, "I feel like when I relax and try to slow down I just go faster!" 

This was the run I have been waiting for. The run that just felt right and good and wonderful. Challenging, but amazing. At one point I looked at my watch and saw something that I haven't seen in what feels like forever - a pace in the 7's. 

For about 9-10 miles I was on cloud 9, cruising right along. Of course, it had to come to an end at some point, and at around mile 10 my Achilles and IT band started hurting pretty badly (because it's always something new!) 

The last half mile or so of the course was on rocky/bumpy/icy/puddly trail-like terrain and since I have weak ankles, it was really doing a number on my legs. That's when things hurt the most, and between miles 10-12 every step I switched between "You better not finish the last 5K loop Lauren, don't be stupid" and "OK, you're fine, you got this, your legs are just achy from running a long distance." At one point I told Peter, "Don't let me finish all 15.5 miles." Well, as we got to the start of the last loop, I of course informed him, "I'm finishing." Miles 12 - 15 were pretty good, and the last .5 on that damn shitty trail killed, but we celebrated Peter's longest run at 13.2 miles and we finished at a full-out run, crossing the finish line at 2:09:28. 

We cooled down with a little jog and stretch and then walked back to the food table where I gleefully exclaimed, "ARE THOSE PEANUT BUTTER AND BANANA SANDWICHES?" Best race ever. 

But for real, this was my second GLIRC (Greater Long Island Running Club) race and both were excellently organized with really nice courses. The 25K was 5 5K loops through Caumsett State Park and it was really pretty with some rolling hills but nothing too challenging. The heaters in the tent weren't working, but the post-race heroes and snacks, small-town feel, and relatively convenient parking situation more than made up for it. 

The elites were a little sassy, and I lost feeling in my hands walking back to the car, but overall, it was a wonderful day. Oh, and did I mention that when Peter and I were in the tent loading up on snacks, we both heard our names announced as first in our age groups? Cherry on top! 

(Pace = 8:21 suhweeeeet)

I was so exhausted the rest of the day, but not too exhausted to eat approximately every 20 minutes. 

(Home sweet Long Island)

This morning, I woke up pretttttty damn achy. I'm working at NY Running Co. tonight and hoping there's some serious down time for foam rolling... my Achilles is the real thing concerning me and bothering me at the moment so fingers crossed some stretching and a day off will help. And, YOGA TOMORROW. Ew.


I may or may not have used a wine rack as a sneaker tree and a scarf hanger as a medal display...