Yesterday started Week 6 of my Hot Chocolate 15k training plan. Saturday was supposed to finish out Week 5 with a 5 mile run and it turned into a miserable 4 miler. I didn’t fuel properly – brought water with me but didn’t eat anything more than a Belvita bar before I went out. I was pretty dehydrated from splitting a bottle of wine with the boyfriend the night before and not drinking any water after we got home from dinner. My left hip has been giving me problems lately, tightness in the hip flexor and dull pain at the top of my hipbone. I didn’t stretch as much as I should have before the run and haven’t been good about stretching or foam rolling lately… and I don’t even want to talk about my yoga practice – or lack there of. But! I’m changing all of that.
I’m half way to the 15k and need to start giving it the good ole girlscout try! I’ve lost motivation to get up in the morning because I’d rather be warm under my covers, I hate running in the dark in the morning and don’t enjoy running after work because it eats up most of my night… all excuses. So now is the time I stop with the excuses.
Tonight I ran my scheduled 4 miles. I visited the forest preserve not far from our house for the first time and it was an awesome run! My legs felt great, my hip wasn’t giving me issues and the trail was challenging but not so challenging that I struggled. I’ll definitely be going back to explore this place during the DAYTIME. I started my run at 6pm and knew it would take me at least 40min to finish my 4miles… by the time I started making my way back to my car it was getting pretty dark, especially under the canopy of the trees.
I ditched the trail and fled to the road coming into the preserve for safety and less creepy crawly feelings. Nonetheless, the creepy crawly feelings were still there… the ones you get when you’re by yourself in a dark strange place. One thing I was sure to bring was my personal protection! Made me feel a little bit better anyway. 🙂 Running in the dark (when you’re hyper alert) makes you more aware of your surroundings. You become more aware of your breathing, your cadence, little quirks in your form… everything seems to be going so fast but so slow at the same time. Maybe that’s just me?
On mile 3 and 4 my pace quickened (out of panic/adrenaline I think), but my breathing was the same even tone. I ran and I ran fast! I finished my 4 miles in 47min with an average pace of 10:56 and a best lap of 9:35. I barely walked – only up some crazy hills on the trail.
Here’s proof of how dark it was when I got done. Needed flash to take my obligatory running watch and shoes photo! I realized tonight that I have never trained for a fall run before and have no clue what training during the short days of fall is like. Will definitely plan my runs better now that the WINTER IS COMING and the days are getting shorter!
When I got home I took a selfie for being proud of myself and to prove that I survived and didn’t get eaten by any boogie men! On another note: I loved my outfit tonight, kept me cool and dry but kept me warm at the same time. Undershirt was UnderArmour Seamless 1/2 sleeve and it felt like butter against my skin. Love these shorts from Road Runner Sports and of course my lucky shirt from Gym Doll Apparel.
Question – What time of the day is your favorite time to run? What do you use for personal protection while running?