Today was my first run of the "season" on the treadmill. It's probably more than 10 years old. Creaky and loud. But it works. And best of all it was given to me. During the summer months it's folded up in the back of the garage. It's light early in the morning and I'd rather run on the streets.
But for a multitude of reasons, I'm just not comfortable running for long periods of time in the dark. I've tried to talk myself into it. I know many who do run and I know my neighborhood is safe. But I just can't get past it. So I don't push it.
The last few weeks it's started to get light later and later. Since I've been heading out around 5:45am all summer, I could handle running in the dark for 15 minutes or so until the sky started to lighten up. But now the sky isn't getting light until after 6:15am. Last week on an early run my mind got the best of me and I spent the dark part of my run with all sorts of terrible thoughts.
So we pulled the treadmill out over the weekend.
Last night, looking towards this mornings treadmill run, I wasn't too excited. But looking at the workout Carrie assigned me, I felt like a treadmill was probably my only chance of hitting the paces! And I was right. The treadmill was my friend today.
My run consisted of a mile warm up and then 4x1 mile at an 8:40 pace with 2 minute recovery in between miles. After my warm-up mile I took a minute to stretch my hip and IT band. Then I started in. My hip actually did much better on the treadmill, which was a pleasant surprise. I find that I more easily hit the 180 steps/minute on the treadmill and the impact is softer than the asphalt.
The miles felt fast but I was doing them. The third one took a little more determination at the end. The fourth one was the hardest, as it should have been I guess. I had to switch from listening to a podcast to Beyonce telling me how "Girls Run the World."
Best I could tell, I did run the miles between 8:40 and 8:50. I honestly don't think I could have run those paces on the streets with the small hills in my neighborhood and the slant of the streets which is difficult on my hip too.
So, maybe the next month of running on the treadmill will give me the edge I need to get the PR I so desperately want.