Today my trainer scheduled for me “run 5-7 miles easy in zone two.” Easy is not an easy word to define. “Breathing easy as I run” is probably the best way to put it. Accomplishing this, well, is getting easier. However – nature wants to keep me on my toes. My first mile this morning started out so well. I was able to run at a comfortable pace and keep my heart rate in my zone 2 range. For me zone 2 is 110-121 and I averaged 119 beats a minute. I also ran that mile in 12:11. Just a month ago I had to walk more than run and my heart rate was over 120. Mile two is where I hit the steepest hill I run up, so I wasn’t surprised to have a pace of 12:59 and average heart rate of 124. When I started my run I need my sunglasses because the sun was rising. By mile two I was a bit distracted by the color purple – the sky and the huge storm cloud just to my west. There was sunshine to the east and what appeared to be the wrath of God to the west. The thunder kept echoing in the distance…
Just before 2.5 miles in I turn west and truly was a little frightened at the sky in front of me. I decided to turn back at 2.6 miles in and figured it would be a 6 mile run. I headed down a different side street that is a cul-de-sac and on my way back the clouds were more overhead than to the west. Keeping an “easy pace” when purple rain is threatening is not so easy. I wanted to finish up the run at lightening pace – before the lightening found me. Determination also played a role and I was not running less than 5 miles. And that is what I did. I ended up running five miles, an average heart rate of 124 and an average pace of 12:52. This is significant – since I started running in my lower zone ranges today was the first time I averaged below 125, and under 13 minute pace. I am getting faster at running slower! Sounds a little silly, but it is something to celebrate.
I finished my run just in time to get a few pictures of the clouds and get inside. As my hand hit the door knob the rain started to fall. Here is what I just barely out ran:
This evening I am lifting and then meeting a friend for dinner, so I am posting a little earlier than usual. The events today are reminders that life requires flexibility if I truly want to seize the day. My body is adapting well to my training and I really wanted to run 7 miles this morning. The storm wanted to race me and if I was going to win I had to make a few adjustments. Spending quality time with a dear friend later on today is truly making the most of my time – not just writing about it. As a planner, I rarely have blank space on my schedule, but how I fill that space will determine if I truly am living it right. Making a few adjustments may be all it takes to seize the day.