Ran the Virtual 10K with my Run Club

I woke up at 7AM this morning on a quest: to do my Long Slow Run while participating in a "Virtual 10K".  I did a Virtual 5K on Thanksgiving Day so I figured this would be equally fun.  I was supposed to run 6 miles on my LSR anyway, so adding .2 miles to the distance wasn't gonna kill me.

I also decided to do my run today with members of my Run Club.  It sounds strange but, I joined the Run Club this summer and since that time I have only run with them during the Hot Chocolate 15K race (I ran it with 3 members of the club).  Their regular runs were either conflicted with other runs I had planned, or their distances were further than I could go.

So today, I got dressed and headed to LifeTime.  I met up with 6-7 other members and we were off and running!  Four of them were way faster than I was planning to run, and the others were slower than my pace.  So I ended up running by myself.  But it was still cool to know others were out there with me.  I considered listening to music since I was kinda 'goin solo' but decided not to waste the time to dig out my Nano.

The first two miles were pretty normal. I was running at a 10:00/mm pace, the route was a bike path with rolling hills, nothing I couldn't handle.  Then I came to "Cardiac Hill" (where I do my Hill Work).  My friend Mike warned me last night that the Run Club's route includes the "hill".  I figured I could handle it.  Well running down the hill wasn't too bad.  Then I hit the Illinois Prairie Path and before I knew it, I had reached 3.1 miles in about 30 minutes.  Time to turn around.

Now, going back to the club was a bit more challenging.  The first one was Cardiac Hill which was about 3/4 mile in front of me.  When I got to the base of the hill, I decided to run up the hill all the way like I do in my hill training.  This would be a new experience since my legs had run 3.5 miles already.  So I surged forward and took the hill at a 10:15/mm pace!  It was tough!  When I got to the next stop sign, I was winded so I let myself walk for about 2 minutes.

Then I kept moving onward! Only 2.1 miles remaining!  Of course, all those 'rolling hills' of the route felt a lot harder to my legs now than they did in the beginning of the run. LOL!  I decided not to check my watch and just keep running.  And before I knew it, I was almost back at the beginning of the bike path.  I checked my watch and I was at 6.1 miles!  So I did a little sprint until I reached 6.21 and then I logged the lap on the watch (finish time 1:06:27) and walked the remaining .3 miles back to the club, where I saw three of the Run Club members chatting.  I got one of them to take my photo before I headed in to take a shower.

I am very pleased with the finish time, as well as my performance on the route itself and particularly the Cardiac Hill.  The 10:42 overall pave isn't going to break any records, but it is a LSR pace I am comfortable with.  I posted my results on the Virtual 10K page and sometime next week, I will find out how I did compared with the other participants.

A great way to start Christmas Eve!  Afterwards, my wife and I had breakfast at the IHOP, shopped for stocking stuffers, and eventually made it back to the house.  Now I can relax before my daughter and I sing a special duet ("Mary, Did you Know") during the Christmas Eve service at our church.  I am really excited about that!

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