Long Run Thursday - The Mississippi River

It's been a while since I ran along the river.  I try not to do it so often in marathon training because it's also part of the course on race day.  Training on it can actually make me know the course a little too well, if that makes any sense.  I headed towards the river today because I've just spent too much time around Lakes Harriet and Calhoun lately.  Between running and biking, I'm feeling like I live there.

I had big plans for the run today.  They all went out the window with my alarm clock!  Not really, but I did turn my alarm clock off and go back to sleep instead of getting up a 5:30am like a good girl.  At 10am I woke up for real, got out of bed and had chex mix and a diet pepsi.  Breakfast of champions.  I laid around for another hour and talked to a friend online before finally getting myself off the couch.  It was so bad I had to promise myself music on the long run, something I think I haven't done all year.  I need to update my playlist.
Fairly accurate depiction of the run

My goal was to keep all my miles under 11:30, which for a long run for me is fast.  Taking pictures adds an extra challenge to pacing.  Most of my runs are in some gorgeous places and I do like the photo ops, but I also feel guilty for pulling my focus away from running.  Photos work so much better when  I run intervals and can snap pictures during the walk breaks.  I tried my best to snap pictures and pay attention to the pace, only really failing once.

It worked out pretty well, with 9 out of the 12 miles being at or faster than the pace I wanted.  I did start off a little fast.  And by "a little bit" I mean "what was I thinking?"  There was an, ahem, stop in the middle.  That mile can be whatever the hell time it wants to be as far as I'm concerned. Mile 11 was slower because I stopped to take pictures of a bird and got carried away.  See if you can spot those pics below.  Mile 12 was slow because apparently I had given up.
This is the first year I've had reliable GPS data on my long runs to show my pace at each mile.  It's been really helpful.  It gives me something to focus on while I'm running, and also gives me good feedback when a run took longer than I wanted.  Maybe if you hadn't stopped to photograph that kitten or spent five minutes eating your gu...  It's also giving me some confidence that if I keep working I can make my marathon goal time. 

The run today was gorgeous.  The weather was cloudy so everything looked and felt gray.  But the water was so still it was like glass.  It made for some great scenery.  (Mississippi River from Lake Street Bridge; running path near Summit Ave; Minnehaha Creek; blue herron at Lake Hiawatha; Lock and Dam 1 seen from the Ford Bridge; and my favorite picture I've ever taken)

No comments:

Post a Comment