Conquering the Mountain

It is not often that 1 run gets its own post! Since August the struggles have been many the successes have been few and far between with my running. Yesterday I conquered and got a huge boost!!

I have been struggling with my asthma this week and the run on Wed left me feeling breathless. My legs were very sore from running on the Alter G treadmill Tuesday. I was less than optimistic about Thursday’s 12 mile run up South Mountain. The run takes me up 1.5 miles to San Juan Rd then a rolling 4 miles with a steep incline at the end. At the top I usually take a gel enjoy the view and head back. I have done this run for 22 miles under a 7 minute pace. I was hoping to get under 7:20.

I woke up early that morning trying to forget that today was the day I was supposed to be flying to Minnesota for the Twin Cities Marathon. Before I started running at stood at the bottom of the mountain and put fear aside telling myself I would own this run. Until the turnaround at the top it is hard to tell if you are on pace since there are so many rolling hills. I was feeling awesome. It was one of those days were you get in the zone and feel great.

Reached the top with avg pace of 714. I took a gel at the turnaround enjoyed the view and headed back down. After the steep downhill it seemed the rest was uphill not rolling. I have run here many times this year and it never seemed this steep. My quads were screaming and lungs were gasping for air. I just kept pushing wanting to keep that avg pace. This was such good mental training in fighting for every second! I am going to need that in Dec at California International Marathon. I had about 2 miles to go until I reached the gate to head back down. I switched the music on my ipod to “I won’t back down” and kept fighting.

When I reached the gate I had lost a few seconds and was now at 7:17 (usually I am faster on way back). I stopped for a moment to catch my breath before heading down. I finished with avg pace at 7:13! I was so excited. It was a tough run and I know I will be sore but it was well worth it!

I am going to try to keep busy this weekend. I want to cheer on my friends that are racing Twin Cities, John Reich, Jeff Turner, Tere Zacher and Arianna Hillborn (10mile). I can’t wait to see how they do!! Sunday we are going Stand up paddleboarding (SUP) at Tempe Town Lake. I am going to have to wear some shorts over my swimsuit to cover up the huge fist size bruise left over from Dr Ball’s work on me this week. Looking forward to a 16 mile run Sunday morning too! Life is good!!

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