It was not SMART to think I could pull off 5 sub-13 minute miles with ~100 degree heat index last night. But the attempt was followed by food, fun, and frivolity as I joined a very SMART group of Striders after the run at Jax.
Tuesday's run may have been a bit too much of a confidence builder for me as I entertained visions of grandeur last night, setting out with the intention of going 1:05 for 5 miles. Hal describes Wednesdays as "hard days" so I figured I'd run hard, right? But instead of running hard, I hardly ran. :)
Oh, the first two miles were right on plan but then...WHAM!!! Mother nature sucked me dry as I struggled through the remaining 3 miles. Still, overall, when I look at my average pace for the entire run, it wasn't that bad considering the conditions.
Total distance - 4.91 miles
Mile 1 - 12:44
Mile 2 - 13:05
Mile 3 - 14:26 (included 2 water breaks but no walking to this point)
Mile 4 - 15:07 (stopped for a shower and water + a couple of short walk breaks)
.91 miles - 13:13 (14:32 pace)
Total time - 1:08:36
Average pace - 13:58
It was a struggle to finish to be quite honest, especially feeling like I did after 3 miles and being so close to the car. But if Sunday's long run was training smart, last night's run was training hard.
Speaking of training hard, I got to talk to SteveS for a bit last night. Man, Steve's giving us all a run for our money on the weight loss game. He wasn't kidding when he said that he was going to beat me AND Bill in our little shrinking competition. I'm sure glad 2nd place doesn't have to wear a dress too because Steve would be the only one in pants come July 31st. Given my recent "surge" though, I may pass him some time in the next week or two. Of course, I'm starting from a far more advantageous position than the already lean, mean, and speedy SteveS. Great to see you out there my butt-kickin' friend.
There were several new faces at the Strider outing last night. It's great to see the club continue to grow. The more the merrier. That reminds me of something funny from the HARRA banquet several weeks ago. When it came time to had out season awards, the Striders kicked butt. As all of the team awards were announced, it was...The Houston Striders...The Houston Striders...The Houston Striders...another club...The Houston Striders... Then, it came time to announce the individual runners of the season, both male and female, for open, masters, and veteran. It was announced that these awards were there to give the smaller clubs a chance (the club competition is participation based for the most part, I think). Roger said that the runner of the season awards were more about QUALITY and not QUANTITY. I thought, well, ok, whatever. What was funny was that when they started handing out the "quality" awards, it was the same song...so-and-so from the Houston Striders...so-and-so from the Houston Striders...and for the women veterans, so-and-so from the Houston Striders...on and on and on. Yes, there were quite a few individual awards for runners from other clubs and it was much more evenly distributed. All the clubs for the most part kicked butt so congratulations to the ENTIRE Houston running community and to HARRA for that. I just thought the "quality, not quantity" comment was a hoot. Looks like the Striders represent on both fronts.
Last night's fun didn't end after our sweltering scamper around Memorial Park. About 20+ SMART Striders met at Jax on Durham for food, fun, and frivolity, Strider-style. Besides the triple-f-play, the purpose of the meeting was to Q&A on the upcoming SMART training season. With the exception of 3 or 4 new faces, most in attendance were SMART veterans so the Q&A was brief. And there was SWAG!!! Bulk Gatorade, Carb-boom, singlets, and these peculiar little electrolyte replacement strips were handed out to all comers. Now where else are you going to get so much for so little ($20.00/individual $25.00/family)? Anyway, I must say I just had a blast last night, as always, where the Striders are gathered.
I'm off now for a zippy 3-miler before it gets too, too hot.