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Thursday, July 1, 2010

Happy Birthday, Canada!

And what a beautiful day to celebrate a 143rd birthday...doesn't look a day over a hundred!!
Here in Calgary, a cold front has moved in, so the temperature has "plummeted" to 17C (63F) from the high 20's (80+) it was all week. Combined with the breeze and slight cloud cover, it made for a PERFECT day for a steady run.
After a late breakfast (I slept till 9am) of a non-fat latte and a lemon cranberry scone, I puttered with my Garmin, fussed around the house and generally did anything to put off my run. It's not that I didn't want to go, I just didn't have the oomph at that particular time. I finally got my mojo, and went out, wearing a bright red shirt to celebrate the day.
I was scheduled to run an 8km Steady today. The goal of a steady is to run the distance, maintaining a steady, consistent pace for the duration of the run. No walk breaks. It amazes me that even a year ago, the thought of running for more than 10 minutes without stopping was crazy, let alone 10km! Now, I struggle to slow down to my steady pace, without even thinking about stopping.
Anyway, I walked to the starting point, at the corner of Elbow and 4th St (right by the river), which is about a km away from the house. Good warm up walk...started running, with the goal of maintaining a good 7:52 pace for the 8km. Except, I thought it was a 10km run today, so that's what I was aiming for...oh well, what's a km or two these days, huh? I decided that I didn't want to do an 'out and back', so mapped out in my head to run up to the dog park, on top of Sandy Bitch - oops, "Beach" - Hill, across the ridge back to Sifton Blvd, down the hill back to Elbow Drive and back to the starting point. I quickly settled into a pace, and held it up for the whole run! The only time I stopped was waiting for the stupid cyclists crossing the one know the one...where it clearly states "cyclists dismount" at the front, in BIG, BOLD LETTERS! And you know, don't thank me for waiting for you dumb asses to make it across...I didn't stop FOR you - I stopped BECAUSE of you. Big difference!!! That got my mad on, so I did speed up for bit, till I calmed down again. I did have to walk up Sandy Beach a bit, where I almost got killed by another cyclist (wheee....downhill is FUN!), before safely making it to the top. Ran through the dog park (man, there are a lot of dogs in this city) and down the big hill back to Elbow. There, my pace increased to 6:45! That guy was right...downhill is fun!
Finished my route, which clocked in at 8:92km - remember I was aiming for 10. However, my pace of 7:15 was much faster than the 7:52 goal (oops), and I did have a nice km walk to and from the start, to warm up and cool down, making the total outing just under 11km.
After running through two parks filled with families picnicing, my plans for dinner changed drastically enroute, so I popped into Safeway to pick up hot dogs, buns, 3-bean salad, coleslaw and finally, strawberries and cream for dessert. Also bought a small chocolate milk to replenish with, before heading back home.
Changed again, and am going to chill for a bit before I eat and then go get Mom for a visit with Dad. Then it's back home, to get ready for work tomorrow. Boo...
Hope everyone is enjoying their day.

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