What Comes After 10

I love long runs. They are undoubtedly my favorite part of training. I mean, when I’ve only done 4 and want to be done, maybe for a minute I don’t love them, but I always at some point find myself so pumped during and after them. Today was Kara’s epic return post ankle roll injury. I mean, we did a short run on Wednesday, but today was really her big day back. The last time we ran together was when we did 8 miles.

Kara got to my house bright and early for some cinnamon raisin Ezekiel bread with almond butter and banana. I know that everyone eats nut butter and banana toast before long runs, but there is a reason. I felt fueled and energized the entire time. I don’t think I will ever do an other long run without this breakfast. We waited a few minutes for the sun to come out, put on our fancy new compression socks and we were off!

"Watch out run, we're coming for you!"

"HiiiiYA! Take that, road!"

I was feeling pretty good today and secretly the entire time I was wanting to do 11 miles. I haven’t repeated a number on a long run yet, and I am always anxious to cover new distance and do something I’ve never done before. I contemplated lying to Kara about how far we’d gone and then surprising her with a “Tadaaaaa, we actually did 11!!” when we returned, but I didn’t know if she’d appreciate that post injury, so I pretended not to notice that the Garmin beeped at 5mi, and then stopped at 5.06 and said “Ohhhh whoooops…” I made it a whole 30 seconds trying to be deceitful. Then I asked Kara if I could convince her to run for 4 more minutes before turning around, and because she is basically the most awesome friend and running buddy to ever walk the face of the Earth, she immediately said yes, and we changed the plan to 11. I was so excited I literally jumped up and down a little. New territory!!!! My favorite!!!! So we ran a few minutes longer until we hit 5.5, then stopped for some espresso love flavored Gu.

This Gu stop made me laugh for about a mile. I mean, I think the espresso flavor tastes pretty decent, but the stickiness of Gu sometimes makes me a little grossed out, but I look over and Kara is not at all phased and says “I’m thoroughly enjoying this!!” She straight up loved the Gu which for some reason was pretty hilarious to me. I’ve never heard someone say that I guess. We turned around and I continued to laugh about her and the Gu.

It seemed as if the second half of the run flew by. I was so excited. To run new mileage, to have my running buddy back, to be running. I finished the last mile of the run with a huge slapstick grin across my face. We finished with a respectable (for me) 10:11 average pace.

That is Steve's hand. I promise my hand is not hair like that.

Mile 1–11:12
Mile 2–10:36
Mile 3–10:32
Mile 4–10:25
Mile 5–10:25
Mile 6–10:05 (thank you Gu!)
Mile 7–10:09 (man so close to no positive splits!)
Mile 8–10:07
Mile 9–9:48 (that’s more like it!)
Mile 10–9:39
Mile 11–9:19

Really really close to negative splits!!! When we walked in the door I was just so happy. I get some serious runners high. I’m pretty sure I’m hooked ;)

Once we got back, I forced Kara to join me in some stretching and foam rolling.

Check out those hot sweat stains. It's no wonder half of my blog search terms include the word sweat.

"Aunt Kara, I will help you stretch! I am so good at stretching. How do you think I got this long?"

Then came the least fun part of all. I’ve been using the pool as my “ice bath” and as it’s gotten colder and colder outside, the icy pool bathes have gotten less and less fun. Today, it looked like this outside:

In Phoenix, 50 degrees is considered scary cold.

"AHHHHH!!!!!!!" and lots more curse words

Steve just made fun of us.

"Yeah, just keep laughing, jerk."

While Winston and Clementine were in full on play time mode. Thanks for the entertainment, puppies. You definitely made it suck less.

"Come out and play with me NNNOOOOWWWW!!!"

"Okay, you asked for it! Raaaawwwwrrrr!!"

 

It’s funny, once you’re actually in the pool, the only thing that seems worse than staying in is getting out and getting blasted by the cold air. Finally, once our toes started to go numb, we braved it.

Brrrrrrrrr

"Mom, why did you go in the scary water? I don't understand."

This much is true, ice bathes are better with friends.