If you follow this blog, then you probably know that I’m training for the Dopey Challenge and I’m following the Hal Higdon plan for this event. The first week came and went pretty well. The weekday runs were pretty uneventful, then came the weekend back to back runs. The Saturday mileage is still pretty low – Only had to run 3 miles. Then on Sunday, the plan called for 13.
I met up with a couple friends at White Rock Lake in Dallas. I like to do my long runs down there because it’s scenic, there’s facilities, and there’s lots of other active people out and about. My friend Robert was one of the friends. He’s been getting into running more and more lately. I was happy for him because he said it was his first time looping the lake without stopping! My other friend Meg was acting as our pace coach (just under 9 min miles). She’s a great runner and probably could’ve left us in the dust, but she’s coming back from injury, and she’s nice.
Anyway, the lake is a 9 mile loop, but there’s a secret Batman detour that we took to add an extra mile. So after those 10 miles, Rob and Meg had to go, but it only left me to run about 2.5 by myself. I started off taking a new path for me. There’s the main path, but off to the side at certain places there’s a mystery path that I’ve never run on…until now. It pretty much ran parallel to the main path, but went through more wooded areas and had less people on it. I’ll have to explore more of it in the future.
Back on the main path I had less than a mile to go when I paused my gps watch to grab some water and swag from a local radio station set up on the trail. If they post the photos, I’ll snag em and share em on this blog. It was cool because I got a whole swag bag for a training run, just like I would at a race. Score!
Only problem is that I forgot to restart my watch when I started running again. I went at least half a mile more that will never be documented. Ha! No matter, a little extra is good, right? For my last stretch, I took a side road off the path. I see bikers go up this road quite a bit, but I have only done it once…in a race. This side excursion was very basically a big hill. People go up it apparently to get some extra work in. It definitely got my legs and lungs burning. But I’m glad I did because at the top of the hill it had a great view of the Dallas skyline over the lake.
I felt pretty good during this run. It helped having friends to chat with along the way. But what really helped was the slightly cooler temps. Don’t get me wrong, it was still warm. Probably around 80’s at sunrise, but that’s much better than it’s been around here. I felt strong at the end of the run, unlike two weeks prior when it was a battle to get my 12 done. I’m hoping this weekend was a small taste of what’s to come!