So I think it’s my run-iversary this week. About four years ago, after the yarn trade show in 2011, I got home and the next morning got up and started running. I have no idea why. I hadn’t been a runner at any point in my life before that (in fact, true to those t-shirts you see at running expos–running was my sport’s punishment). I had been walking, fairly regularly, and I think I just wanted to go faster. So I did (but probably not really).
Four years ago, I loaded up on gear. I downloaded plenty of apps, had waist pouches, arm bands, water bottles, a million pair of earbuds all promising to not fall out, something on my shoes to hold my key…the list goes on and on.
I only remark on this because today I headed out with virtually nothing. My garmin hadn’t re-charged. My phone was nearly dead. I hate having things around my waist or on my arms (I’m a big fan of singlets), and earlier this spring, I even gave up music, mostly to give up the tangle of the headphones. It’s sorta nice.
Today’s plan was for a 4 mile tempo run with the middle two miles at race pace (for me that’s 9:10). I was disappointed that my garmin hadn’t charged, but plan B was to use the Strava app on my phone and just hope for the best (that 1, it wouldn’t die and 2, that I could judge my pace by effort, more or less, instead of garmin beeps). I slipped my phone into the back zippered pocket of my shorts and headed out.
It was rather humid, so I decided to cut myself some slack–telling myself that if I didn’t quite get to my pace, that’d be ok, but I needed to at least give it an effort for those two miles.
Well, it worked. After a .75 mile warm up, I ran 2 miles slightly faster than race pace (in the 8:40-9:20 range (there’s a bit of a downhill that works to my advantage), and finished up with just slightly over a mile cool down. It was hard because of the humidity, but man it felt good when I finished up, took the phone out of my pocket and saw the results. The entire 4 miles was at a 9:17 pace.
It’s sorta funny. Four years into this, and finally, I think I’m getting the hang of it.