BRAG: 18 miles, pshaw!

A little tip I learned from Allie

As per my training schedule, yesterday (Sunday) marked my long run day…and not just any long run day, my LONGEST run that I have ever physically attempted – in my life (!!) – 18 miles!The alarm went off at 5:10 AM but I dilly-dallied for about 10 minutes – changing, eating, filling my water bottle…all that good stuff.  Then, I was off!

Twilight-y on the walk to the road.

I strolled out, down the street and with a little leap, the Garmin was on, and I was off!  The sun was still minutes from rising, but the sidewalks were lit and ready to be run!

Purple sky...

I was buzzing along, feeling pretty good in the perfect 60’s temperature – when I realized that the water in my Camelbak was really…sloshysounding.  Like. Really. Annoying.  Why was it so loud?


…oh.  I forgot my Sony Walkman (best music player ever).  Durr. It was time for some good ol’ Inner Dialogue. SELF: Should I turn around and get my Walkman? ME: Um, yes.  Were you really planning on running EIGHTEEN miles with no other soundtrack than your breath? SELF: Well…it wouldn’t be THAT bad, would it?  I mean…(looks down at watch) I’m already 1/2 a mile out… ME: Yeah.  1/2 mile out…which means 17 1/2 more…SILENT!  Is this really a conversation we’re having?So, back to the house I went.

Sun rising...

Take two…just a minor setback!  Plus, it helped to add that mile in, since I was already curious how I was going to route my run mileage.


And just like that, the sky was a brilliant shade of…gray.  Eh, can’t complain…the temp was still manageable and my legs were getting warmed up.  Nice!

Mile 2 mark!

At my second mile (which is usually my first mile mark) I made it to the trail adjacent to the still-shuttered Meadowcreek Parkway.  It is supposedly closed until next month, but I’ve been hitting it the last few weekends (shh) and it’s really nice.  Even though it’s just over a mile long, it is scenic and shaded.

Kinda windy...

Lots of wildlife (deer, turtles, squirrels) and a nice bridge that runs over the creek.

Trail bridge & Road bridge

It was my first run that I had toted my camera along…so some were kinda shakey…

Whoo steady shot!

I was trotting along, and with the Garmin chirp, I found that I was going a little quicker than what I was shooting for…so I tried to tone it down a bit.

Back to the main road...

Before long, I was off the trail and back on the main drag…headed toward downtown.

Streets still quiet!

The road curves up and around, on a slight grade but nothing Earth-shattering before it meanders up toward some residential areas and into the Historic District.  I reminded myself to snap a quick shot of a road that always reminds me of my BFF…

Matthew's road! 😉

I was coasting along, still feeling great!

Charlottesville nTelos Wireless Pavillion

Running down the Downtown Mall is really fun…as cheesy as it sounds, I imagined running down it ever since our visit to Charlottesville in November, before we moved here.  Of course, running down it around 6 AM is different than the lively nightlife scene…early morning, the trashcans are lined up from the bars the night before…and there are some sleeping vagrants sitting on benches near the Greyhound station…but I digress…MILE 4 !

Chalkboard Wall
Love the brick paved walkways...

Before long, I had sped away from the curious sights and smells of the popular locale and on my way to the Corner.

En route.

It was right about this time that I was getting really tired of carrying the camera!  I know, it’s small…but still…I like my hands free!  I was also thinking I needed to recharge soon, since I was approaching Mile 6.

Rugby Rd.

I stopped, snapped one last shot, then stuffed the camera in my bag, and pulled out my run nutrients du jour  – I was all out of Clif Shot Bloks – so jelly beans it was!

It was just about that time that I also REALLY hit my running stride – the running was easy and nice…temperatures still good, too!  I practically floated down the long straightaway of Rugby down to Emmet & the Barracks Road Shopping Center – back up to UVA, up and around and back the way I came!  Believe it or not, I never (ONCE) felt, “when will this run just be OVER?!” – in fact, I reached home at Mile 15 and opted to finish the last three on the treadmill only because my Camelbak had decided to GOUGE a chafe-y dent into my back and it was burning!

When all was said and done…I DID it!!

Avg Pace
Summary 02:49:15 18.00 09:24
1 00:09:33 1.00 09:29
2 00:09:29 1.00 09:28
3 00:09:05 1.00 09:05
4 00:09:32 1.00 09:33
5 00:09:26 1.00 09:23
6 00:09:26 1.00 09:24
7 00:09:48 1.00 09:42
8 00:09:02 1.00 09:02
9 00:09:27 1.00 09:28
10 00:09:06 1.00 09:08
11 00:09:09 1.00 09:12
12 00:09:30 1.00 09:30
13 00:09:12 1.00 09:13
14 00:09:46 1.00 09:47
15 00:09:33 1.00 09:35
16 00:09:25 1.00 09:26
17 00:09:21 1.00 09:20
18 00:09:16 1.00 09:17

BAM!  I felt SOO accomplished!  Back home, I switched on the cold water to fill the tub up while I took a quick shower…then popped out, threw in the whole bucket of ice and chilled (!!) for about 15 minutes.


So, this week – bring it:

JUN 27
JUN 28
JUN 29
JUN 30
28 Mi

Dist: 2 Mi

Dist: 6 Mi, inc
Warm; 3×1600 in 8:24
w/800 jogs; Cool

Dist: 20 Mi

And, hey, if you’re feeling inspired – why not run Richmond, too?  I got an email today to let me know that the price is going up on July 1 – so hop to it if you wanna run 26.2 for just $80 – includes tech shirt + finisher’s medal + other good stuff!

What are your proud of this week?


    • It’s next to the Meadowcreek parkway, connects from Melbourne road (by Cville HS) to Rio Road.

      And thanks 🙂

    • Thanks, Julie!!

      I am in LOVE with that walkman. My ears are a weird shape (I think) but the buds actually stay in place and I only need to adjust periodically on the right one because of the weight of it – so nice to be cord-free!

  1. […] So, I set off, plotting my course as I went.  As per my calendar, I was scheduled for 20 miles, at a 10:29 pace.  And though I was feeling plenty ambitious, I knew from the get go that I wasn’t going to cover all that ground outdoors, because the temperature was already creeping up, so I set my Nike+ app to run a half-marathon distance (13.1) outside, then finish up on the treadmill, since that worked well the week before (15 + 3 then.) […]

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