After debating about my long run yesterday WAY TOO MUCH, I decided to play it safe (relative term) and take the Rock Creek Trail instead of running along a busy road.
I really wanted to run along the road because it has major hills that I have been craving (I know, call me crazy). They are massive and I felt I was up to the challenge. The down side is that for miles I would have had to run on concrete sidewalks - ouch for the shins, and on busy shoulders of a major highway with my back to the traffic - as the other side of the road has no shoulder or sidewalks.
After a restless night, I decided to play is safe and run on Rock Creek trail. The family dropped me off at the trail and I headed to my church. I was the ONLY one on the trail (could have been because the National Marathon was just starting), but it was creepy. I felt like squirrels were following me. Note to self: find a running partner. The entire 7.7 miles, I only passed 10 people - 3 groups of 2 women running, and several men. At about mile 4, a man carrying 10 lb weights in each hand ran passed me. I was in immediate awe... then felt paranoid and wondered if he would come up behind me and hit me over the head with one of those weights. He proved to be a true athlete and kept running with his weights in his hand. Has anyone seen this before? This was in the middle of no where... so he had to be running far with those weights.
Anyway, I made it to the place I needed to turn to get to my church and my Garmin said: 7.7 miles. If I had run the road it would have been close to 11. Oh well, I decided that was all I was meant to run so I stretched a little and headed to the church.
As many of your comments suggested, it was a tough run. I still did not feel 100% after being sick and I felt it out there. My first mile was 9:35, second was 10:04, third was 11:12 (HUGE hill) and then the rest were in the 12's. I took the GU at mile 6 and while it tasted great... it felt weird in my mouth. I am not ready to give up on it yet... but I am not sure I needed it.
Rock Creek Trail is beautiful. I think it is 14 miles long and takes you from Derwood, MD to the DC line. I have my heart set on running to DC and back one day! Most of the trail follows a beautiful rocky creek (as its name suggests). I went over 7 large bridges and 5 small ones. It was a beautiful run. I love the change of scenery.
I am praying for those racing today... specifically Cat, Craig, and Amy who are running a 1/2 marathon in VA right now.