I’m guess people could be getting tired of hearing about my mountain running, but it has been such a transformational thing to me and my running, I want to pass it along my experience along.
Yesterday was my first mountain run in 3 weeks and my first since last weekend’s half marathon. I had taken last week off of running (okay, I ran 6 miles) to make sure I don’t get injured in my post race workouts as I have in the past.
I began at an easy pace as I warmed up. By the time I got to the foot of the mountain, I was running too fast. I knew I was running too fast for a mountain run, but being that I hadn’t run much in 7 days, I guess I got carried away.
About half way up the steepest part of the mountain road (one of the first hills) I had to walk. That was okay. I walked about 30 seconds and then started slower and kept a good pace.
By the time I got to the top I was getting tired. I could tell I hadn’t run this road much in three weeks. My legs were tried and I was breathing hard. At the top of the mountain, there is about a half mile of fairly level running before I turn around. I got to the turn around point, paused long enough to take and post a picture and headed back down.
This was my only real scare. Right after I posted the picture above on my previous post, I began to run again and felt a “pull” in my left heel. Oh no! It had been a good run and beyond that, I didn’t want to get injured again. So I relaxed and kept my run going. I just paid close attention to how I was feeling and my form. Honestly, I don’t think I hurt myself, but my past experience tells me that sometimes injuries don’t show up right away.
As I got to the bottom of the mountain, I had 1.5 miles to get back to the car. I know my run was in record mountain running time, as I know I was running well. So I pushed a bit going up and down the hills leading back to my car. I passed a guy walking the opposite direction who said, “Does it feel as bad as you thought it would?” I had to ask him to repeat his question. He was being nice, knowing I was breathing hard and really pushing. I just yelled back, “Nah, this is easy”! He just laughed and we continued in our separate directions.
I got up the last hill and could see my car. I finally looked at my time. 8:45 pace. Seriously?!? I ran hard down the last hill. My pace dropped to 8:42 for the run. My total time was 1:09:47 for the 8 miles. My best time before this was a run with TJ several months ago that was at an 8:50 pace.
My heel is better today and I am still being careful.
My hip isn’t doing great, but is much better then last week. I wear a sciatica belt on my mountain runs to help with the support and that makes a lot of difference.
So a half marathon PR last week and a mountain run PR this week. All in all, I’m pretty happy.
I’ve been trying to catch up on other people’s blogs by the way. I got way behind the past week or two, but I am getting there slowly. 🙂
Have an awesome week.