Man, tonight was a tough one. I'm not too sure why- it was just a 6 miler at a normal pace- but for some reason I was exhausted from the beginning! I wasn't thrilled at all with how it went since I ended up walking about 3 times but I was pleased to finish it at least.
There are a couple of reasons I can think of that the run may have been extra hard today. One is that last night I went back to one of the running group runs. I should probably explain this group a little better- it's a meetup group that has about 1000 members or something but very few are actually active. There are multiple runs scheduled a week and you just choose which ones you want to attend. This was the first one I'd been to on a Wednesday night and it was a totally different group of people than the ones that are usually there on Monday.
One thing that wasn't different is that once again, these people were fast! I started out with a group that was in the back of the pack and we finished the first mile in 8:45- woo-hoo! The problem with me starting out that fast, though, is that I then faded quickly. The group left me behind shortly thereafter and I actually ended up cutting my run a little short (3.5 miles instead of the 4.5 I'd planned). So...kind of a fail. But, to put a positive spin on it, I at least saw an 8 on my Garmin which I've probably only seen about 5 times! So, it's something, right? But even that one way-faster-than-normal mile seemed to leave me still exhausted today!
The other thing that may have impacted my run this evening is that my lunch was a (delicious!) buffalo fried chicken salad from Taco Mac. I went to another UGA alumni group lunch which was great for getting out of the house but probably not so great for pre-run fuel. That combined with a late afternoon nap left me feeling pretty drained when it was time to run.
I'm starting to feel a little pressure since the Thunder Road half marathon is less than 2 months away and the Rocktoberfest Half Marathon is FIVE weeks away. I'm only running the Rocktoberfest one as a training run (and Corey's first half-marathon- yay! :)) but I still want to feel good while I'm doing it. I'm where I had hoped to be with distance but not at all with speed. The fact that I faded so quickly yesterday was a good reminder that I need to keep pushing the pace and doing some more planned speedwork to get faster. It's so awesome to have a built-in running partner in Corey and it definitely keeps me consistent, but since he's so new he's not ready to do speedwork yet so that's one's up to me. Gotta keep at it!