Saturday, June 4, 2016

The hum of bike tires, the smell of lilacs

Mostly about my run today. If you're interested in someone more interesting and photogenic, check out yesterday's blog.

If I'd wanted a cooler run, I should have left earlier. Say, dawn. But I was asleep. Eventually I got up, made coffee, Linda got up, made waffles with fresh raspberries. We pigged out. Once my tummy settled I hosed myself down with sunscreen and headed out for a run.

I was aiming for about 15 K, and planned to run in Fish Creek to get at least some shade. At first I was struggling to run slower. Yes, slower! This is a long slow run, after all. Some random web page I found suggested that if race pace is 10 K per hour, then the long slow run should be between 7:15 and 7:45 per K. For the longest time I ran 7:30, paced by my awesome running buddy who has that pace dialed in. Lately we've been running a bit quicker.

A 7:15 pace seemed good, but my first 4 K were all under 7 minutes, even trying to run more slowly. Downhill and feeling fresh I admit. My legs wanted to run faster. Then I stuck around 7 minutes per K till just after turnaround at 7 and a bit K. I touched a bridge, and that seemed like a good place. Now heading back uphill. Even then I was just over 7 min per K till the bottom of the hill going out of Fish Creek. Up a big hill, in the blazing sun. That slowed me down a little, but I recovered and my last K was 7:11. In the end it turned out to be 15 K, 1:48, for a 7:11 average pace.  My phone says 21 c but it was hotter than that.

The entire way I was breathing easy enough to keep up my end of conversation, except for up the hill. Part of swimming fast is getting into the groove, and feeling the rhythm of the stroke. I was trying to find that in my run stride, but wasn't quite in the groove. My legs felt a bit heavy, and my quads were a little stiff. It seemed like each step was a slightly different size, and my left foot wanted to slide into place rather than landing neatly.  My pace and cadence are all over the place.

Plus I was distracted by the many, MANY bikes zooming along. I think an entire grade school class zipped by, then clustered up like a swarm of bees all over the path as me, some oncoming riders, and some riders catching up with me all arrived at the same place the same time. I was quite prepared to trample the little monsters, but their teacher was firmly ordering them off the path. I waved at her. You couldn't pay me to do that job, or supply me with enough duct tape to keep my sanity.

It was easy to feel the difference running in the shade, and running in the sun. I drank a whole bottle of Nuun laced water, then lots more after. Maybe carrying the water bottle made it harder to find my stride. I was loving the lilac smell. It was everywhere yesterday during the bike ride and today.

My legs felt tired and a bit creaky after the run. Could I have run 6 more K for a half marathon? Depends. In the shade, maybe. Not out in the hot sun. I have in mind the route from Black Diamond to Millarville. Not one speck of shade. Lots of hills. It could easily be another smoking hot day. Or snowing, we never really know here. Now that I think of it, snowing might be easier to deal with. I can always add layers, but there's a limit how many come off.

Some photos, just because. A reflection photo in the microwave of all things.

Celina was feeling extremely talkative this morning. No idea why. Here she is still lecturing us, while sunning herself.

Cats are so cute as they lie there sunning their tummy.

Whatever Curtis is thinking, it's very firm.

I love this sort of shocked and dazed look.

After the run I worked up more of a sweat mowing the lawn than the run did. Once the sun was off the gate I stained it as an experiment. We might do the rest of the fence like this.


  1. Replies
    1. I will, when you do. No bets on which of us gets arrested.

  2. I loved the look on Celina's face when I was holding her that time-that was a cat eye-roll if I've ever seen one.


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