Sunday was a simply perfect day for a long run. Spring was teasing us; sunny with a kick of heat, and like the perfect curry, it warmed our bones from outside in. The sea air left a tinge of saltiness. The paths were well worn with eager joggers making the most of this spectacular day.
Starting at Mt Martha shops, we headed out at a speedy warm-up walk as far South as the path would take us, before turning into the breeze and taking off.
Less than 2km in, we hit the first of many hills. Long and slow, we powered up to the 4km point before the path flattened and we found our pace and settled into the run. Spectacular scenery, friendly locals, great company - what more do you need?
We tried to simulate race-feel and dropped to a walk for our own drink stop every 4 or so kilometres, so by the time we reached our turn-around point at the top of Bellura Hill, we were feeling pretty fresh and confident we had the return trip in our legs, lungs and minds.
Today was about so much more than distance. Sure, our aim was to hit the magical 18km mark. New territory and all that. Everything we've read about half-marathon preparation says that this is the longest distance you need to do to be ready.
Do we feel ready? You betcha!
We took the legs for a cool down in the ocean. Despite appearances...definitely still Winter. Brrrrrrrrr
Many more experiences to add to the tool kit though.
Katrina went for a strong breakfast of oats. I scoffed down 2 pieces of grainy toast with peanut butter and honey about an hour before running.
I packed a Gu (my first experience) in my singlet pocket and took a small amount at 7km with 1/4 of my water bottle to test how it settled. All good, so took another slurp at about 12km.
Katrina didn't bring anything along this time as she'd had such a great breakfast. At about 14km she was really feeling depleted and finished off my Gu to bring her home.
I hadn't read anything about Gu before I went out. Had no idea that the packet doesn't open fully and kind of seals back over itself. Handy for my pocket. And that you have to kind of bite down and force the contents up towards the top. Doesn't taste too bad but it's VERY sweet if you're not used to eating sugar.
This is our specialty...
Smashed avocado on sourdough with bacon and a poached egg. And a very tall skinny cap of course! All washed down with a heck of a lot of water.
I'm prone to blisters, but came away from this run with no new additions to my collection, thanks to vaseline on my toes. Top, bottom, in between. You'd think it would squish around, but it's nothing other than glorious.
Katrina wore uncomfy socks last week, but swapped them out this time and all was good. I wore my ever reliable Thorlo Pads. I could try others, but why mess with something so good?
So we've got a permanent record of our achievement *puffs chest out proudly*
Time to start getting excited about next Sunday's run...