This past weekend, I went home to spend some quality time with my family and to help with this giant-ass yard sale (a full report on that later). My sister decided to make the trip home, too. Autumn told me that she needed to run, and she asked would I be interested in joining her. After my craptastic run on Monday, I knew that I should but wasn’t sure what to expect out of my legs.
“Sure,” I responded.
“Great,” she said. “I’ll need to do seven miles.”
Wha?? Back it up. “Seven miles?!?!” I asked, incredulously. My sister is hoping to do a half marathon soon, and she’s been running with a group. Since she was going to miss the schedule group run, she wanted to do the seven miles that were planned for that weekend.
Now, I know that I’ve said that I want to do a half. And I do. But longer distances still get me to shakin’ in my Brooks. I’ve done two 10ks, and that’s pretty much the longest I’ve ever gone (that’s what she said). But I wanted to support Autumn, and dammit, I wanted to do it for myself.
We mapped out a route around my parents’ neighborhood (where we grew up; my parents have had the same house since before Autumn was born) and dropped off some water bottles in a strategic location. Since she had been doing intervals, and I since I was afraid my legs would rebel against me in a muscle and ligament mutiny, we decided to run using a 4/2 interval. Autumn and I walked to the end of the driveway, and we were off.
It was a chilly 60 degrees or so, but the sun was blazing hot. Luckily, I had my big sis to make conversation with. And had gorgeous scenery surrounding me, giving my mind room to wander. Like all these gorgeous cotton fields that abound.
We picked up our water bottles close to mile 3, and shortly after, I had my first Power Gel experience. Verdict? BLECH. It was so gross. Apple flavoring my ass. The consistency reminded me of what I expelled from my nose shortly before we left on our trek. And the taste…I’m not even going to put it into words, but I’d be that’s-what-she-saiding alllll up on this blog.
Our water bottles were conveniently placed on the steps of the church, and it was all good…until people started arriving…and waving.
The next several miles were breezy and cool. And boy, was it getting bright!
We stopped to stretch several times, and since it was a PDR for both of us, we tried to take it nice and easy. We talked about what we’d been up to recently, how we were feeling, and running in general. At one point, we saw these adorable calves, racing parallel to us. Another field housed several cows, chewing their cud and mostly likely gossiping about the day. (Probably talking about us and how we weren’t in church on a SUNday….)
Before we knew it, we were hitting the home stretch.
Seriously, the home stretch. That white dot up there is a sign my dad hand-painted for us (it used to be a vivid sunset, and now…it’s gray. Our intentions are good, but we’re lazy sometimes, when it comes to follow-through, and you know, re-painting). My house is just down that driveway.
We had a few rough hills, but I’m proud to say we finished in just over an hour and a half. It may not have been the fastest time, but dammit, we did seven miles, and we did it together. I couldn’t have done it without her! To put things in perspective, we finished this seven faster than we did our 10k together, during which we got lost.
Do long distances/new distances make you nervous? Do you like to run alone or with friends? Is speed more your focus or stamina (that’s what she said)?