My friend and Runner's Roost teammate Kim Dobson and I got together for quite the run this morning. Seriously. It's been pretty windy in Denver for a week or two now and that didn't change one bit for our 16 miles this morning. It was INTENSE.
The first bit was totally fine and we were knocking down miles at a really nice sub 7 pace. But around mile 5 or 6 the wind really picked up and by the time we were on the last 8 the gusts were so strong they were pushing my feet out from under me. So what did we do? We kept on running like straight gangstas! Our average pace was 7:08. Take into account the fact at least twice per mile the wind flew directly at us (sometimes accompanied by dirt and leaves) taking the pace down to what felt like a complete stop, and that is one way strong 16 miler! Oh. Hell. Yes.
Admittedly, it hurt and totally exhausted me and the whole last half I was whining and swearing. But it felt good to know I was able to get through it. And there is no way I would've done it if I were out running on my own. Which brings me to this: I really f#$!*&g miss running with my girls! It is SO incredibly helpful to have even a tiny group of friends who run your same pace and have similar goals and who you get along really well with. AND who have similar schedules. My friends Ashley, Becca, and Bridget were so awesome to run with last year. Whether or not the run was great or totally awful, fast or slow, it was so nice to have someone to talk with about anything and everything and to pull me through whatever kind of run we were doing. It seemed that any problem I was having would seem easily fixable after a run with those girls. Plus, a hard and/or long run seems to require only a fraction of the effort that you would need to accomplish one on your own. I've actually read studies that running with others blocks pain receptors in your brain so you're able to go faster for longer periods of time.
I don't have a normal work schedule and Ashley, Becca and Bridget all moved (really, ladies?? come on now!) so finding people to run with during the week is a challenge. I'm so stoked that Kim, who's a teacher, was on spring break this week because even though the run was really tough, it was so pleasant to just be able to have a good long girl talk.