Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Yin-Yang of an Out-and-Back

This morning was my "big" 5 mile run in lovely New Jersey.

I had debated between just running in the boys neighborhood and fining a park/trail/etc but the latter was proving too difficult, so I plotted a 5-mile out-and-back course from the house. It was a simple route without too many turns since I don't know the neighborhood that well and didn't feel like getting lost in the wilds of New Jersey.

As everyone anywhere around here knows, the weather today was spectacular. I left the house around 11 and temp was on an upward climb from 65, but there was a gorgeous breeze that kept the heat from getting to me. (I am *not* a hot weather runner. Not a bit.)

What I didn't look at in my google plotting was the elevation, and while I knew this somewhere in the back of my head, I didn't really think about all the ups and downs I would potentially encounter. Thus...the roller coaster of emotions that comes with a hilly out and back course. For every uphill you encounter, there is a spark of joy that later, oh later!, you will get to run down that beast. And yet alas! Especially on the way out, each lovely downhill you float down, you know will come a reckoning, for you will have to run back up that monster to get back home again.

And so went my run. Lots of swearing under my breath as I encountered another hill. My turn around was a road that would basically loop around, and I laughed when I realized that I had chosen "Vista Drive", which as the name implied, was one long and windy road uphill.

I won't lie, I took three little catch-my-breath walk breaks over the course of the run, those being after I valiantly battled a hill. But I felt good about the run just the same. I increased my mileage by 40%, which is a big jump, and I think if it had been more flat I would have been a.o.k. So I'll take it!

Today's mileage:: 5.0
Mileage this week:: 15.5


Maria Polletta said...

I stumbled upon your blog today and was so impressed to see what you're doing. I'm all about volunteering (I currently have a blog that spotlights charities/ways to get involved) but I don't often see many people who've chosen to so closely personalize a volunteer mission. (And, as a completely horrible runner myself, I can only marvel the fact that you're actually keeping up with the path to marathon-ready status.) I hope you keep up the good work :)

Also, I was just wondering, in keeping your blog, have you become aware of other people who've taken on the same type of challenge? I'm always looking for new organizations/trends to highlight on my blog.

roxie said...

Hi Maria -

Thank you so much for writing - your comments put a big mile on my face.

Most of the stories I've come across are either from readers of this blog who have started running marathons, some people I've either inspired (or goaded!) into running, and lots of amazing people from Team in Training.

My friend Seth started a project last fall called the Obama baton where a baton would be passed from supporter to supporter throughout the NYC marathon - which I thought was very cool.

I know I've run across lots of fun charities and causes, and will try to put together a list for you...

Thanks again for writing.