Friday, May 2, 2014

Long Runs (part 1)

One year ago this weekend I was running my first ever 15K Crossover Challenge 2013
I remember how nervous I was to run "that far". I picked the event because the course looked pretty flat and I was scared enough of the distance and I didn't want hills on top of it. I ran a few (literally 2) eight mile training runs. I picked the flattest routes around me I could find...hills aren't as scary to me now, but a year ago, I actually planned ways to avoid them.  Race day was the first time I ever ran 9.3 miles and I remember after mile eight it seemed like the finish line was never going to come into view.
Finish line 2013

Luckily, I got a very random cool day and did pretty well, but I was exhausted when I was done. I rested three days before I ran again. I remember how elated I felt when I got home. I figured if I could run nine I could tackle a half; it gave me the confidence to at least consider it, and four months later I ran my first half. 

A year later I still feel like 9.3 miles is a long distance. I don't get nearly as exhausted running that far now, but it never feels easy! Running is tough stuff.  I have made progress and grown stronger, but those random rough runs still slip in and make me question my sanity and my strength. 

Shoot, sometimes I have such a hard time keeping myself going I feel like I have never run before and wonder what's wrong with me! (hate that lol) When I finish a tough run like that I always feel better for doing it though. Usually by the time I am in the shower I am already thinking about my next run...craziness! 
Hopefully we'll be smiling after tomorrow

In the morning I have 10 miles scheduled with my run buddy Kasey and we actually planned a very hilly route. It's exciting...I just realized a year ago my knees would have been knocking together thinking about the hills. 
The largest elevation gain is 134 ft., there's a rolling up and down section, and one stretch is almost a mile of (100 ft.) uphill before there's a break.

A year ago just putting my feet on the pavement was enough of a challenge, I don't know who this crazy person is picking hills. 
Long run plan - enjoy the challenge - adjust pace as needed - finish :) 

I have a part 2 about long runs coming. 
I am always curious to hear your you run hills a lot? Thoughts on hills verses more gradual inclines? When you aren't worried about pace, what's fun? 
Have a wonderful weekend!


  1. 100+ft of elevation has my knees knocking together in fear just thinking about it! So impressed with the progress you've made over the past year that you can now tackle it like it's no big deal! The highest elevation gain on my normal route is 11ft and it's a bridge that huff and puff up!

    1. I use to go for the least possible lol Have you checked out your Portland marathon course? I stayed with a friend on the Columbia Gorge a few years ago outside Portland and we walked and hiked quite a bit where we were and lots of hills. Oregon is a funny state some parts were extremely flat and than mountains. You may have to start incline work on your treadmill :)

  2. I love running hills on long runs. It makes things more interesting! Plus it's like sneaky speed work :)


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