Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The best run/walk I've had in 3 years

I had a great 100 minute medium run this morning. I completed 6 miles in the 100 minutes. Typically, I've done about 5.2 miles in that time, and a few times when I was tired I only did 4.8 miles. This illustrates why I like running or walking for time rather than for distance. When I'm tired, I do less distance and when I feel great, I do more distance -- all for the same time.

My wakeup heart rate was 51, the lowest it's been since I had blood clots three years ago. I started from 100th South and planned to run back and forth for 100 minutes, but when I got to the bridge at 106th South, the water was almost gone, and I kept on going south until I reached 50 minutes. I then turned around and returned to 100th South. When I reached the parking lot, I still had four minutes left in my run, and I kept on going north until I reached 100 minutes. I then stopped and walked back to my car, the walk being my cool-down.

After I had gone about 0.75 mile, it started to sprinkle. I could tell from the dark sky that rain was coming. The rain did come, although it was a light rain, and it lasted for most of my run. There was a lot of wind, with gusts about 20-25 mph. The wind was from the south and was a head-wind until I turned around. Even with that head-wind, I was able to keep a relatively good pace using my 1:20 running and 0:40 walking segments. When I turned around, the wind was a good tail-wind, and I had to slow down my efforts a bit to keep from going faster than I wanted to. With about a mile and a half left, the wind and the rain stopped. However, half a mile later, the light rain started again, but the wind didn't come back. I kinda missed having that tail-wind.

When I left home, the sky was completely overcast, and the clouds covered the tops of the mountains east of the valley. The temperature when I left was 61 (F). I knew it would be colder than it has been, and I wore my long-sleeved Pearl iZUMi technical shirt. I only had that one layer, but I was glad it had long sleeves. While I ran south I was facing the wind. I could feel the rain drops on my chest (they felt like cool spots), but my back felt warm and nice, even though it was wet. When I turned around and was running with the wind, my chest felt warm and nice, and I felt the cool spots on my back. I was glad I wasn't wearing a cotton shirt; it would have been soaked, heavy, and clinging to my body. The technical shirt felt light, even though it was wet, and it was blowing in the wind. Temperatures in the 50s and 60s with a wet T-shirt and a brisk wind blowing are ideal conditions for hypothermia, but I felt warm and nice during the run.

I will be doing my long run (140 minutes) on Friday instead of on Saturday, due to a Halloween party we are having for our grandkids. If I feel as good on Friday as I felt this morning, I'll probably do 8 miles instead of the 7.1 or 7.2 miles that I've been doing.

The Jordan River still has a relatively lot of water, but the level is down from its peak in the summer. As I passed under 114th South, I noticed there was still water next to the pillars that support the bridge. At its peak during the summer, the river overflowed the path under the bridge, and I estimated as I passed the pillars that the level has dropped about 3 feet from its peak. The level will continue dropping as we go into winter, but next spring the level will start to rise. Water from Utah Lake enters the Jordan River via a large "gate" at the start of the river. The gate keepers increase the flow in the Jordan River during the spring in an attempt to lower the level in Utah Lake and thus give the lake more capacity to absorb the spring runoff of water from the winter snow without flooding homes near the lake.

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