I ran an 8-miler this morning, fueled purely by a bowl of maple spice oatmeal and a 32-oz glass of water. It was fabulous. The weather was a bit down, compared to the gloriousness of the past few weeks, with a haze and cloud cover, but a steady 60 degrees. There was a bit of a wind from the south, so heading into the first and last part of my route was more difficult than it would have been otherwise. Ran the whole thing with a negative split, which I have not done in a while, and I felt strong and spirited at the end. It was a good run, all the way around.
What was interesting is that it's the first long run in a LONG while where I had to search for things to think about. Normally, I'm decompressing from life in general while I'm out there, trying to prioritize what comes next in the day at work, or what part of my home life is going to get short shrift this week. But guess what? For the first time in my recent memory, I don't have any of those issues. I'd wanted to take a break between my old job and the new one, but it didn't work out that way. But because I haven't gotten a traveling assignment yet, I've spent the last two weeks working from my home office, sleeping in my own bed, and learning more from my self-designed online training than I ever imagined. And I've taken care of little things here and there that needed to be taken care of (the oven, for one -- how much easier is life with a full kitchen's worth of appliances??), and have spent time with the folks that matter most to me. And there isn't anything hovering over my head like an afternoon cloud, threatening to burst into a torrential downpour at any moment. My face has cleared up and I've gotten control of the afternoon snacking/junk food binges that sabotaged my fitness exertions. I've got a decent haircut and my home, while still not *sparkling*, is no longer in shambles as it was habitually a few weeks ago. The laundry monster is not threatening to take over the house if one more shirt lands on the dirty clothes pile.
Things are good right now. Hub's birthday is today (39!! eeep!!), and I was able to make a cake (mostly) from scratch, and had time to arrange a great unexpected gift for him, and we'll spend the day together as a family. We just came off spring break for the boys, and both Hub and I had time to take them out and about, enjoying them and spoiling them a bit, and just reconnecting. Will all this change dramatically once I get my first assignment and hit the road? Without a doubt. But for now, I feel settled, and in charge, and in control. So there was nothing to do on the run today except enjoy it, and nothing to think about except my feet, and the trail, and the wind through my hair. I felt strong throughout, and finished with a kick, posting a 9:34 mile at the end. What a difference. Just for fun, here are the splits:
Mile 1: 10:32
Mile 2: 10:32
Mile 3: 10:04
Mile 4: 10:19
Mile 5: 9:48
Mile 6: 10:06
Mile 7: 10:07
Mile 8: 9:34
Total time: 1:21:05, average pace of 10:08,1075 calories.
Gotta run -- the Elder Child and Hub just left church and we're meeting up with them for lunch. Peace out, and have a GREAT week!!