Tuesday, September 7, 2010

best 20 miles ever ...

So, as you know, my attempt to run 20 miles on Saturday went awry for a multitude of reasons. But, by the time Sunday rolled around, I was ready to run.

The plan was simple. I was going to head out at 6 a.m. for the first 4.5 miles. At 6:45ish, I was going to stop back at J's parents to pick him up for the next 11. Then, at mile 15.5-16, we would run past the house again. J would stop and I would finish the rest of my 20. Easy peasy.

I woke up around 5:45 (waking up Dizzle and Doodle in the process) and got dressed, ate a Clif Bar and gathered my gear. Promptly at 6, I headed out. AND.IT.WAS.WONDERFUL.

The temperature was 54 degrees when I walked out the door. And in case you haven't been paying attention, that's about 20 degrees cooler than anything I have run in since early May. Anyway, feeling energized by the weather and the rest day on Saturday, I decided that I would run a little faster than my usual long run pace. Nothing super fast or challenging. Just whatever my legs were up for. When I got back to the house to pick up J, I realized that I was averaging just above "Super Dream Goal" Marathon Pace. Sweet.

Then J and I headed out. (Aren't we cute?)

I let J set the pace. I was hoping for about an 11:30 average, which is about 30 seconds slower than my 15+ mile long run pace and about 30 seconds faster than J's long run pace. We started together, but for most of the run, we ran near each other, not with each other. I was about 30 feet in front of him. I was hoping that running just ahead of him would push him to catch me. (I know, I'm a mean wife). He didn't, but he held his pace quite well, finishing with an average of 11:50 for the 11 miles (over a minute faster than his current half marathon PR pace).

When we got back, I left J (he had to get ready for the Red Sox game) and finished the last 4.2 miles of the run. Again, I decided to push the pace a little. I felt good and averaged 9:30 from miles 16-20. And the icing on the cake ... mile 20 was my fastest of the day at 9:13. Basically, it was the best 20 miler I have ever run.

And see that smile? It's more than just a "thank God I'm done" smile. It's also a "thank God for perfect runs" smile.

35 comments:

momof3 said...

blue looks good.

Keri said...

YAY...that is an amazing feeling! Congrats on a great run! The weather makes such a difference doesn't it?

Keens said...

You looked good together..

That "thank God for perfect runs" smile is so inspiring...

Wish to complete mine too.

ajh said...

What fun to run a long run with your husband! Was he going to the Red Sox game or watching on tv?

Silly Girl Running said...

Yay! Don't you just love these perfect runs? :)

Jessica said...

Hooooray! That post made me really happy :o)

abbi said...

Yay for the great 20 miler!

Amanda - RunToTheFinish said...

nothing like an awesome run to evoke the happy smile

so cool that your hubs will pound out that mileage with you!

Molly said...

gotta love a perfect run! I'm thrilled the weather is getting cooler! gives me hope for my marathon this weekend!

shellyrm aka jogging stroller mama said...

It's nice to break up a run that way. I am hoping the race director doesn't change the aid stations (there's talk of it) because right now there is a station about every 3-4 miles. It really helps mentally to run a long race station to station. It is so easy to run 3 or 4 miles so that is how I look at the 50k just a bunch of "morning runs" put together!

I love that J is running such distances with you. So jealous. Hubbs didn't get out with me at all this weekend. I am hoping he will do the Half in early October. But he is only at 3+ miles. Ugh!

Emz said...

YAY for the best 20 ever. Doesn't get better than that.

Awesome photos.

Zaneta said...

HOORAY FOR WONDERFUL RUNS!! :D It's so fun to get back from a run and be elated with it instead of disappointed! :D congrats on a great run and running your fastest for the last mile! :D

Courtney said...

Yay for an awesome 20 miler and yay for a husband who will pose for a dorky pic beforehand :)

kat said...

Great run, and good on hubbie for joining you.

Marlene said...

AWESOME RUN! These ones are the best! Congrats on a strong 20!

Runners Fuel said...

Great runs! I love it when that happens!

Stephanie said...

Awesome run! I can't wait for some slightly cooler temperatures (a 20-miler might be in the little more distant in the future).

Katye said...

seriously. you're my hero. that is all.

Katie A. said...

Any long run that ends with the fastest mile of the day and a big smile like that is KICKASS! I'm so excited for you - you are really doing awesome lately!
I, on the other hand, had one of the worst 18 milers in a long time! Congrats girlie!

Oh, P.S. - on Sunday after my crap long run - I made cupcakes! They were my reward and I thought of you the whole time! Hahaha! I made them healthy and low fat but they were perfect! Hugs!

Off the Bike said...

Totally agree, doesn't get much sweeter than that feeling. Congrats.

Tricia said...

great job!

~Andrea~ said...

WOW! You look amazing after running 20. Way to go on your super fast pace!

Julie said...

tonia, this post ROCKS! So encouraging to read about such a great 20! you rocked it. Congrats. Cheers to awesome 20's.

Staci Dombroski said...

Glad to hear you had a great run! Have a wonderful week :)

Lesley @ racingitoff.com said...

Wow. Awesome run. I think it's great that J runs with you. I can convince my husband to run with me at all. ;-)

Char said...

It's amazing what a difference the cooler weather (and consistent training) can make. Congrats on the great run.

Jodi H said...

Awesome! I love it when everything works out perfectly! Great job!

Candice @ I Have Run said...

Love those runs. And even better that it was on 20!!

akjenniekt said...

Congrats on such a great run :)!!

LookingUpAgain said...

I'm loving the cool temps that we're having! It is a welcomed break from that heat!

Great job on your run :)

MomRunningFromCancer said...

Yup - sometimes we just need to listen to our bodies. One day of rest - and you had a great run.

Love it - and your smile is priceless. Yahoo!

MCM Mama said...

Woohoo!! This major increase in weekly mileage is totally working for you!

Cynthia O'H said...

Most excellent job on the long run. And, you two matched again! True love.

Jamie said...

awesome 20! sometimes it pays to procrastinate a bit ;)

the dawn said...

what an awesome run! this should really boost your confidence going into indy! bring on fall weather :)