I started this post on September 1st, but got side tracked for seven days. Sorry blog! August was filled with long, hot, humid days, so although I love summer, waking up to the 1st day of September with cooler temperatures was nice! Even now at almost 9am it's only 68 outside. Amazing! I recall my September 1st run being very pleasant as a result.
Saturday M and I had our long run of 9.25 miles. As most long runs, it had ups and downs. I accidentally made a route that included a rather large hill in the first 5 minutes, so that was not fun. After getting to the top of the hill my calves were unhappy and I was worried that I wouldn't be able to recover and make it the remaining 8.75 miles. We stopped to stretch and walk a little around the 1 mile mark and after that things got WAY better. And by way better I mean we still run really slow but I wasn't hating my life. Miles 2-3 were fun because we were running along new roads with pretty houses that I wish I could afford to live in. Miles 4-6 were fine because it was fairly flat and familiar territory. Mile 6 was a hot mess: we ran into guys doing weed-whacking and I got grass in my eyes. Mile 7 was kind of tough because I knew at the end of the 7th mile was a hill I hated, even though it's not actually that bad. The beginning of mile 8 was terrible because we were running down a long (albeit flat and easy to run on) road and I knew we had to just turn around and come back and the ONLY thought I had in my mind was "if we turned around now we'd be done sooner". Luckily, as soon as we got to the end and DID turn around, I cheered up and even picked up the pace because I was so happy to be at the home stretch. The rest of mile 8 was pretty fabulous, and even the painful hill at the beginning of mile 9 was fine. The very last bit was rough. We ran to a traffic circle and then we just had a little bit of a road left to our finish line. That "little bit of road" was WAY LONGER than I thought. We'd never run down it before and driving it doesn't seem like a very long distance. It's 0.34 miles. I know, that's not very far. But I swear it dragged on for hours. HOURS.
Anyway, we finished up our long run in about 1:43:47 and I felt pretty good about it. With a few stops to walk and a few evil hills, an 11:14 pace is nothing to be ashamed about. This weekend we will conquer 10 miles, and so if we go even three steps farther than 10.0, it will be my longest run ever. Pretty excited (and maybe terrified) about that!!!
Lots of the bloggers I read were setting goals for the month of September, or listing what they were looking forward to. I kept trying to come up with a list of either of these things, but nothing too terribly exciting came to mind. Potential goals include: keeping up with running, doing more strength training, cross-training more consistently, and trying to cook new things. Things I'm excited about: trip in two weeks for a friend's wedding (wedding #8 of the year) and the beginning of FOOTBALL SEASON! What are you excited for this month?? Do you have any fun September goals? Perhaps ones that I could also adopt?