Sunday Long Run number three is in the books!
I missed Sunday Long Run two because I was away visiting relatives in Maine. I’m told that it was hot, humid and miserable last week. This week didn’t feel great either!
The Sunday Long Run
Because it has been so hot the past three weeks, a group of runners has been going out early. The club run begins at 8:00 AM, but these early birds leave sometime after 7:00 AM. That hour can make a big difference in the temperature when you finish.
When I arrived this week only a few people were going out early so I waited for the 8AM crew.
We had about 20 runners with an additional dozen or so early runners.
The course was pretty strait forward and flat. We ran from Bruegger’s on Main Street in Melrose out to Lake Quannapowitt, loop around the lake and head back. The official distance was 10.7 miles for the long run.
A lot of people ran shorter distances for various reasons including the heat.
Within the first mile I started running with Bobby Taylor. He’s fairly new to the club and is a solid runner.
Bobby made a good call early on and moved to the right side of the road to get into as much shade as possible.
The first mile clicked off in no time. I was surprised how quickly it seemed to go by. Our pace was 9:02, so no land speed records were being set!
We settled into a comfortable pace around 9 minutes and it seemed to work.
Soon enough we got to our water stop at Nick’s pizza in Wakefield. The shade was nice and so was the cold water!
Jim Carson is away so Gail Severt and Courtney Koschei managed our water stop. Angels!
It ain’t Death Valley
We were sweating pretty good by this point, which is a good thing. I took two cups of cold water and nothing else.
I’m trying to teach my body to burn fatty acids for fuel instead of carbohydrates. I’ve been doing this for a while on long runs but I’m not sure it is doing anything. I probably need to dial this in a bit more to make it work.
Running through Wakefield Center the heat seemed to build. We also had less shade. We popped across the street to be on the lake side of the road.
I had hoped for a breeze off of the lake, but it was fairly minimal. Any breeze felt good though.
As we ran around the lake we encountered a lot of people out for their Sunday morning walk. It’s great to see people being active, but it does make for a crowded side walk.
I had hoped for a water stop in the Comverse parking lot, but not this week.
Instead of looping the parking lot behind their building we stayed on the side walk. I wasn’t sure how much the loop would add but by this point neither Bobby or I felt like pushing it.
There is some shade on the North Avenue side of the lake, but not much.
The heat was beginning to take it’s toll on us. North Ave has a small hill after the hotel and I told Bobby we should slow down a bit. Our average pace was 9:01 and I hoped to drop it down to 9:05 by the time we hit the top of the hill. We hit 9:03 when the hill leveled off.
As we turned onto Church Street I mentioned to Bobby that there was a water fountain. We stopped for a rest and Bobby used the fountain. I still had plenty of water in my bottles so I just enjoyed the break.
I love it that Wakefield has a water fountain at both ends of the lake. I’ve used them several times.
As we turned onto Common Street we hit mile 7 at a 9:34 pace. It felt like we were working a lot harder than that.
At the intersection in Wakefield Center I was ready to cross the street even without a walk light. I was roasting and the sun was killing my sunburn from Saturday. But, there was a cop at the light so I pushed the walk light button which I am always loath to do.
The water stop was now only about half a mile away. I couldn’t wait to get there!
The ladies had cold water and bags of ice! Courtney filled my water bottle with ice and it was awesome.
Bobby said he was going to slow down for the last few miles. We started out together but I pulled ahead a bit.
I ended up reaching Bruegger’s shortly before he did. I ran around the building to get 10.8 miles.
Inside the gang was hanging out, enjoying the AC, cold drinks and some food. I got a large iced tea and hung out for 20 minutes or so.
I’m off to Orlando on Monday so I had to get home and pack. Nothing worse than forgetting your shoes or hot weather casual shirts.
After Kayaking for five and a half hours on Saturday and running almost eleven miles on Sunday, I’m spent.
My bags are packed and this blog post is written. It’s time to veg-out in front of the TV!
Run well my Friends!