The weather turned
cool cold this week in Mississippi. Saturday was our first ever Hattiesburg Century Bike Ride. It was 4o degrees and windy. I am sorry to say that I was not looking for a fast, hard, cold or windy ride. I skipped the ride.
I drank my coffee and then jumped on the trainer. I knocked out my 2 x 20 minute sessions and watch some TV on the internet. I rode for a total of an hour twenty. I only felt a little bit guilty.
Sunday was another story. I was looking for fast, hard, and cold – but this time running. I waited for the sun to rise and then hit the trace. The air was a brisk 36. I was dressed just right as I left the house which means that I was wearing way too much. I always just run in shorts but I had a compression sleeveless shirt with a long sleeved shirt on top. I also had a light pair of gloves and a beanie.
By mile 6 the sleeves would be pulled up and the gloves tucked into my waist band.
I headed out towards Epley – this is my 12 mile out and back. It is also a good portion of the Steam Whistle 12k which takes place on New Year’s Eve. Running towards Epley is uphill, slightly. During the Steam Whistle you are very ready to turn around. I had planned on running my marathon pace + 30 seconds. I wanted a manageable, successful run. I found that since I have been running a lot of tempo miles at a 6:30 pace the past couple of weeks, I just might have reset my comfortable pace. I have been trying to reset my comfortable pace for some time. I joke about this all of the time like I can just will my easy pace to be 30 seconds faster than it really is, but maybe it is working (or the 30 degrees drop in temperature – will power or weather, whatever).
I started out on this slight uphill out portion of my 12 mile run. My pace came easy, too easy. I was running marathon + 20 seconds. For those just joining us, my hope to be marathon pace is 6:50 so I had planned on running comfortable at a 7:20 pace but I was running 7:14 for the first mile. Mile 2 was a bit faster at 7:10. Mile 3, 4 5 and 6 were all faster settling in at 7:05. At the turn around I started the slight downhill. It really is more of a mental downhill but it is there.
Since the pace (M+30) was blown out the water I went ahead and decided to keep the pace. The next 5 miles were all sub-7 or right at 7. This run was no longer near comfortable pace. On the other had it was also not in the red. I picked the last mile up to my tempo pace to see if I had it in the tank and clicked off a 6:26.
Moral of the story: The first cold days of the year are wonderful for a runner and miserable for biker.