Yesterday I ran a half marathon training run. I ran at 6 AM with my running club. It was the furthest distance I have attempted and completed since moving to Japan. It wasn't a race, but I was the only person in the group who had ever completed the distance before. I kept my group entertained, encouraged, hydrated, encouraged them to eat (sport jelly beans), and kept their pace between 9:30 and 10:40 per mile. We completed the distance in 2 hours and 16 minutes--one of my personal records or PR. Our average pace was about 10:19. We ran great considering most had never completed the distance before.
Since I'm training for Tokyo Marathon, I've managed to maintain my training schedule. I have even added an extra day of speed work to help increase my pace. Apparently, it seems to be helping. We ran our 13.1 miles at a faster pace than last week's 11 mile run. I was so happy to hear that. I was a little worried about the run, because I haven't been sleeping well since YaYa and PoPo came to visit. Husband and I have been demoted to an air mattress. As a result, we wake up tired and achy. But, it hasn't seemed to affected my runs.
This morning I woke up with no muscle soreness, no aching knees or feet, no anything. I feel great! In fact, I feel better after a 13 mile run than I do after a 5 or 6 mile run. I know that sounds weird to most, but I guess I'm just made to go long distances.
After the run, my lungs were a bit tight. No inhaler was needed, but I could hear a slight wheeze in my breathe. I think it was caused by our last two miles at a 9 minute pace. We also ran later in the morning, and the pollution was pretty bad yesterday (it hasn't rained since Wednesday).
I am so pleased with my running. I haven't walked or stopped on any long runs. I drink water and eat while running. (Yes, you must eat to run long and maintain your speed.) I can now tell my pace by my breath. It's amazing how far I have come in the last few weeks. My body has been good to me even though we've been adding distance and speed. My lungs have also been good. No inhalers needed in the last month or so. The only problems have been my sore feet. But, with the new shoes, they're getting better.
So, I'm ready! I'm ready for the Tokyo Marathon. I'm ready to run further. My mind is set and ready to go further, and I know my body will respond to the request.
I feel good..no great! I am excited, pleased, and looking forward to running longer distances. I know I can do it. In some sick, sadomasochistic way, I enjoy running long. It's part of me, and I look forward to it. It's a challenge I like to beat.
As a child, I never knew an asthmatic could do this. Now, I know anything is possible.
It's amazing what can be accomplished when you work hard!