A few weeks ago, I suggested that Ingrid, who is running the Hot Chocolate 15k in December, start doing a long run each weekend and increasing her mileage until she hits about 8. With her brother in town, and lots of things on the agenda (including one too many drinks and a too few hours of sleep), she did not get to her run this weekend. With frisbee, though, I didn't either. So we agreed to run seven miles together last night in the uncharacteristically warm November air.
We ran much more slowly than I will need to on race day but I am confident that focusing on my track and tempo runs for speed will allow me to get away with a slower run once a week. And for some reason my body, especially my left glute (read: buttcheak) is really sore. Slow and steady was perfect.
We didn't take the time to map a route and just went with it. We started at our own apartments and ran toward each other until we met up, which happened on Connecticut Ave. just north of Dupont. We ran northwest for a while and got lost on the streets of Glover Park until we finally made our way back to Wisconsin Ave. Turns out we only spent about a mile running the unchartered territory but we learned that running in a strange unfamiliar place, unsure of where exactly you are, is a good way to make the miles (or mile) fly by.
We ran in a few more circles on Wisconsin Ave. and then meandered back to Cleveland Park. Ingrid has been seeing a Sports Medicine Dr. who gave her calf tape on Friday to ease the recent pain in her muscles. On last night's run, though, she had knee pain for the first time ever and blamed the tape. I also had achy knees, unfortunately not at all for the first time ever, so we sat on the floor and iced our joints.
Then we wandered the .2 miles to Cleveland Park Bar and Grill to use up some Living Social deals and gorge ourselves. We made an impromptu decision to take advantage of the open rooftop but quickly realized that the wind above the bar and our sweaty bodies were not friends. It was very chilly. But our food came and all was right with the world. Josh ate wings and Ingrid and I shared a pizza, salad and sliders and, somehow, I still felt like I could have eaten more.
I had a missed call from my mom and she wasn't thrilled when I told her I had been running in the dark. It's true, November can't hide the fact that winter is coming by throwing a few balmy days at us. But I'm still fighting that typical Carrie instinct to hibernate about now and I feel very lucky to have many friends willing to fight it, and mainly the darkness, with me. Seven miles is my longest after work run to date and that is worth eating and icing for.