I ran 14k on Saturday morning.
It was wicked!
My body felt strong. Several times I looked at my watch and was surprised at how far I had already run. My blood sugar behaved thanks to two gels and a handful of raisins (9.6 before starting, 8.0 half way and 8.8 at the end). And I had a negative split (ran faster in the second half) despite turning around and discovering that the 7k home had me heading directly into a very cold headwind.
Every week since I reached 10k I've been adding 2 kilometres to my Saturday runs. If all goes well, I'll keep adding and, after a wee taper once I hit 22k, I'll be ready for the innaugural Niagara Falls Women's Half Marathon in June. Fingers crossed.
What's turning out to be my favourite part of this training (other than the fact that I can actually run without pain) is that I'm slowly, kilometre by kilometre, making my way back to my old stomping grounds....
...er, running grounds, I guess I should say.
Last summer, when I was pulling off 25+ kilometre runs, I discovered that I loved running from my house, down a long stretch of road that eventually lead out into the quiet, beautiful, Niagara countryside. It took me up and down rolling hills, past fields of horses, vineyards and woodlots. I loved it and I loved leaving home in the dark and running while the mist burned off the fields and the sun rose in the sky. The deer and foxes kept me company and herons flew overhead as I watched the world wake up.
The last few weeks, I've been running out and back runs on Saturday mornings that take me down that old familiar road. The first ten kilometre run didn't take me that far from home. Twelve kilometres had me getting one kilometre closer to the part that really starts feeling like countryside. On Saturday, when I added yet one more kilometre out, it took me to the base of the hill that starts it all.
This week is easy week (only have to run 10k) and then...I'll run that next kilometre up the Effingham hill.
The week after that - I'll be in the country!!
I'm not a big fan of out and back runs. I prefer to go on a journey so I typically run circular routes. The problem is that I'm not yet running far enough on Saturdays to start doing circular country side routes. At least not without hopping into my car and I'm just not ambitious enough to drive to run. Plus there's a part of me that like to earn that country run by running to get there.
During my run last Saturday I decided that, one weekend soon, I'm going to hire Doug to be my driver. I'm going to leave the house and just run out, not back. Sixteen or eighteen kilometres in one direction - out past my horses, my foxes, my vineyards and my herons.
We'll prearrange a pick-up time and I can just run and run and run.
That, my friends, will be heavenly.