Last night I mapped out a ten mile loop for today using the on-line G-map Pedometer. I wanted a loop and I wanted it to be ten miles long. Those were my only two criteria. So the loop I came up with started out in the back roads of Porter, crossed over Kezar Mountain in Parsonsfield, and sent me back home down Elm St. It looked good on the map.
The loop started with 3 miles of uphill running. I felt slow and tired and awful. I checked my watch and found I was averaging 10 minute miles. Yikes, that's pretty slow! But next I had two miles of downhill, where I made up a lot of time and started feeling better. Just as I was starting to enjoy the run, I came to a point where I had to climb uphill for a few miles on muddy and icy Kezar Mountain Rd. Before I got to the highest point, I was feeling discouraged and slow and terrible again. My legs were aching and tired. I didn't want to check my watch, but I couldn't resist. I didn't like what I saw. It told me that I was pathetically slow and out of shape. I finally reached Elm street and had just two miles of mostly downhill on clear pavement left to go. This was fast and easy running, life was good again! When all was said and done, I only averaged 9:30 pace and felt like I worked awfully hard to do that.
The loop felt very difficult. It really beat me up today. there's only one thing to do in a case like this, I'll have to run it again next week and see if it feels any better!