This morning I got up at 4:30, ate creamed rice (ew- but good energy, and easy to eat), drank coffee and headed out on this run. I had originally measured the run as 13.83 mi, but I wanted to see how much difference it would make if I did it properly instead of cutting corners- crazy that it's exactly 14 miles, though I'd kinda hoped it would work out at 14.2 or something!
I had written mile splits on my hand, and was a bit gutted to see how badly my pace was. It wasn't just the RPE that was of some concern, but the RPP(ace)! I honestly felt like I was moving fast, not just working hard, but I was struggling to reach each mile landmark at 10 min pace. My goal pace for this run was 9:39.
However, in many ways this was one of my best training runs. I ran through boring areas, in the dark, by myself, when I was already tired. I ran over undulating hills, as well as a loong (3 mile) gradual climb, and a shorter (but still long- over a mile) and steeper climb at the end. I ran long, steep downhills, which I hate. Here's the elevation profile:
I also learned that when you're tired, another nasty hill is not *that* bad- it hurts on the flat, it just hurts more on the hill. I hope I remember the feeling I had today when I face the last hill at Rotorua (sort of steep, sort of long, a little past the 20 mile mark, I think). Again- no room for disappointment. Eye on that prize.
One more thing- should I do a mid-March half? There are a couple, not too far off. I'm not sure if I want to set myself up for disappointment, but I would like an idea of where I'm at.
Stats: 14 miles, 2:17, 9:49 average pace. My 7 mile splits were about even, which is cool, given that the big hills were 6-9 and 12-13(ish).