The group started out a bit faster than I really wanted to go. I wanted to take it easy today; but I kept up. Then it happened, at mile 6 we stopped at a water stop situated at the pedestrian entrance to the Hot Metal Bridge on the South Side. It was probably only a minute or so that we stopped; it felt like an eternity. The wind was coming off of the Monongahela River and it was cold. My hip muscles started to get tight. After we got started again, my legs and hips felt like garbage.
Around mile 7, I started to lose steam and drop back. We were running on a paved trail along the river, and I couldn't keep up. I think it was a mixture of muscle fatigue and the music I was listening to - they were mellow tunes - not sure how they ended up on my run playlist. This went on for about two miles. I was in a very dark place. It was mentally tough watching the group fade off into the distance. At that point, I couldn't wait for the run to be over. I knew something needed to be done to salvage what, up to that point, had be a good run.
I went back to basics pulling out my ear buds and just listening to my body. Things started to click. My stride felt descent even with the tight hips; I was able to push on. By mile 9, I had caught back up to the group. The final 3 miles felt as good as the first 6. More importantly, I fought through a rough patch and finished strong, which I know will serve me well on May 5th.
|Hard-fought 12.1 Miles|