Rough day today, but I figured it would be. I had a rare night without Cale and took full advantage of it...unfortunately, that also meant getting home at 2:00. I'm too old to make that work on a regular basis. Anyway, I had set a date to meet Patrick on the Santa Fe this morning. It's a lot harder to weasel out of a run when you're being held accountable to someone else.
Today's plan - 10 out on the Santa Fe at an easy pace, likely in the 8:30 range. Turn it around and come back at mary + 10 effort - supposedly 6:26's. All the variables, though - how I felt, slight downhill, trail vs. road, southerly wind, and of course, altitude - meant "6:26 effort." Straight up, 6:26 WAS effort this morning.
Long story short - 20 miles is still 20 miles. Not a walk in the park. Patrick's company was much appreciated, as he joined me for miles 2-9 and a couple of the pickup miles on the way back. I wasn't able to push and hold well today - I'm sure it was a combination of sleep, still getting over the cold earlier this week, and having an emptier tank before I stepped out the door this morning. I shut down the pickup a mile early as I just wasn't feeling it. Splits and HR's for the pickup: 6:27/149, 6:29/154, 6:35/152, 6:28/154, 6:36/154, 6:23/156, 6:18/156, 6:26/161. Looking at when I shut it down, it seems my HR confirmed what I felt.
Long runs are opportunities to experiment with hydration, nutrition, etc. Trying things on the short runs don't really give you an idea of what they'll do to you during a race. Today's bright and shiny supplement - Justin's Peanut Butter. I'm trying to get away from all those Gu/HammerGel calories. Thought being I can get plenty of electrolytes and sugars through sport drink, but PB is loaded with protein and fat. More importantly, it appeals to me and it's a little more natural. Anyway, I had two concerns about the funky little Gu-like packages. #1 - would I be able to get the stuff out easily while holding a steady pace, and #2 would I be able to swallow this stuff? Turns out #1 was more of an issue than #2. I did feel a little better after downing the package, but my pre-run preparations were severely lacking this morning and I felt it.
Got a quick nap in up at my folks when I went to pick up Cale. Sneaked in another few minutes in the theater when I took him to Gnomeo and Juliet. Kinda cute, I guess. Even kid movies pull at the romantic hidden somewhere in me. I'll sleep well tonight...it was a good week, all things considered.