Another Best Run Ever

A little more than two weeks ago I had my best 16 mile run ever.  Just last Sunday I had an even better 16 mile run!

It was very sunny but a little cold.  I think it was 44 degrees when I left the house.  I was worried about being cold so I wore gloves and three long sleeve shirts.  Oh, and I wore shorts.  I don’t run bottomless and I strongly prefer to wear shorts instead of tights.  It turns out that I overdressed a bit.  I was comfortable at first but after three miles I was ready to lose a shirt and gloves.  At 6.5 miles I ditched two shirts and my gloves.  I stowed them in my parent’s mailbox!  Even after all this time my fan club is still helping me with my running!

Right from the start I felt like I was moving fast.  When I got to 6.5 miles, the first place I allow myself to look at my watch, it was confirmed.  I ran that in about 51 minutes.  That’s a sub 8 minute pace and I almost never run that portion in less than 52 minutes.  It’s kind of amazing to think of how little speed variation there really is.  Varying by 1 minute over more than 6 miles isn’t a lot under normal conditions but when running it is significant.

Feeling good about losing my extra clothing and my good time I continued on with a little pep in my step.  I felt so good!  I couldn’t believe I felt that good.  I had planned to down a gel at about 8 miles but when that time came I didn’t want to.  My stomach was too full so I delayed the gel intake until mile 10.  I tried a gel that had a “2x caffeine boost.”  That’s 50 mg of caffeine which is about a quarter of what you’d get in 8 oz of drip coffee but you get it all in one “shot.”  Also I’m rather sensitive to drugs and have given up caffeine in all other forms completely.  I don’t even drink decaf anymore since it has 4-5 mg of caffeine per 8 oz.

Who knows if the caffeine helped or not but I continued to run like a cheetah chasing prey.  The (almost) 13 mile mark came around and I felt as strong as 5 miles into the run.  This is the second point on the route that I allow myself to look at my watch.  It read 1:39.  I was happy but not too surprised because I knew I was running fast.  That left just 5k to go.  I pushed myself.  I want to see if I could beat my previous time of 2:02:33.

I zipped around the 3 mile loop feeling strong.  When I reached my mailbox I stopped my watch completely in awe because it said 2:00:51.  16 miles in two hours!  Almost 2 minutes faster than my best run ever which was only 2 weeks prior?!  All this at the end of a 52 mile week?!  I felt like doing a Toyota jump, the happy dance, and a fist pump all at once.  I think I settled for a big smile and a verbal “holy crap.”  My high lasted for the rest of the day.  I was high even before I entered my run and learned that it was a 7:35 average pace and that I ran the last 3.1 miles at a 6:52 pace!

I wish everyone could experience what I felt that day.


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