When it started snowing last night, I was having bad visions of a repeat of last Sunday, but thankfully we didn't get much and the roads were clear in the morning. It was quite windy, but the temperature was nice and mild (well, mild for February) and I ended up shedding a couple of layers after the first part of my run (I was adding on some kilometres beyond what the group had planned).
As a group, we had about 5 miles (8K) of MRP scheduled in the second half of the run. I stuck with my pace group and we kept it to our usual long run pace for the first half before it was time to pick it up. For the first 5K I stuck with the group and helped with pacing. The goal was 5:15-5:20/KM and we were hitting those splits bang on. I felt really comfortable and started to pull ahead slightly, continuing beyond the initial plan of 8K.
I eventually caught up and passed most of the slower pace groups (we have a staggered start) and chatted briefly along the way. There were some pretty significant hills that just kept coming, but I still felt fine and maintained the pace, picking it up toward the end. My last 5K ended up at a 5:04/KM (compared with 5:48/KM for the last 5K last week).
In the end, I finished 30K (18.6mi) in 2:42:42 - just 2 seconds shy of my 30K PR from Around the Bay (a race that I considered a significant break-through at the time). It was a pleasant surprise and an excellent confidence-booster to feel so good and finish such a strong run. I completed the entire second half faster than MRP.
1st half: 1:25:00 - 5:40 (9:07/mi)
2nd half: 1:17:15 - 5:09 (8:17/mi)
And I think that's enough numbers for this post!
I couldn't be happier with how well this went. I think last week's long run beat me up more than I realized mentally, because I had a lot of doubts and nerves going in to this one which were really unfounded. Sometimes it can be harder than we realize to move on from a "bad" run, but the fact is - they aren't all going to be good! Do you have any tips for shaking off a tough run?
I think I needed a little reminder of a great pep talk from our coach last year:
"You're as good as your best run,
not your worst run."
Post-run, I resisted Tim Horton's and went with the nutritionally responsible choice for re-fueling: a green monster instead of the pink sprinkle donut
What's your favorite way to refuel? Do you treat yourself after a great run, or try to keep it healthy?
I hope everyone had a great weekend!