My long run this week was 15 miles. I originally wanted to run most of the miles in a local park that has a relatively flat running path, but when I got there they were having yet another event. Rather than put up with the crowd, I left the park and ran to the closest greenway instead. I really love that greenway, but it was such a cold day that I didn't like running that far out. I kept thinking that if I couldn't run the whole way for whatever reason and had to walk back, I would be freezing the whole way. Fortunately the run went well, albeit very slowly.
I thought about doing two loops of the greenway, but ultimately decided to run back towards the park and see if the event was over. The park is much flatter than the greenway and since my legs were feeling pretty tired, I thought it would be better to do a few easier miles in the park if I could. By the time I got back to the park the event was over and the running path was mostly empty. I only had a few miles left, but I needed to take a bathroom break. I went in a building in the park. My Garmin turned off while I was inside and when I turned it back on it was confused and beeped before mile 11 was over. It's not really a big deal since I just kept running until I got to 15 miles, but it did make my splits weird.
It turns out that running 15 miles really helps a girl get her priorities straight. Here are some of my thoughts after running 15 miles:
Everything hurts. I should probably stretch. What if stretching just makes everything hurt more?
I've definitely smelled better.
Why is the toilet so low? How am I supposed to get all the way down there?
Pasta. No, extra pasta with extra feta. No, extra pasta with extra everything!
Heat! Heating pad! Hot shower! Hot tea!
When I got up this morning, my legs were still mildly sore. Lately, I've been doing a short run the day after my long runs because it always makes my legs feel less sore. I didn't really want to run today since my 15 mile run was so hard, but I decided to try foam rolling my legs and make a decision about running when I was done. If you have never tried foam rolling, let me be clear. It hurts like crazy while you're doing it, but it makes your muscles feel better when you're done. My understanding is that it's meant to be a deep tissue massage. I spent about ten minutes foam rolling and my legs felt much better when I was done. I decided that I would do a 4 mile run after all.
My plan was to trot slowly during my running intervals with no pace goal in mind. When I got outside, though, the temperature was in the 30s and I ran faster than I intended because I was freezing. Instead of doing 1:1 run walk intervals, I started running for 2 or more minutes and walking for 1 minute just to stay warm.
I was wearing gloves, but by the time I finished running, I could barely feel my fingers. I kept seeing other runners in short sleeves or shorts, or both, and thinking they were crazy. As soon as I got home, I went straight for a hot shower and then curled up in a fuzzy hoodie with a cup of Trader Joe's Candy Cane Green Tea. If anyone needs me, I'll be curled up under my Snuggie studying for my exams.
If you haven't already, go enter my Hot Chocolate 15/5k giveaway. It ends tonight, Sunday November 24 at 11:59 PM.