Last weekend, we tried out our new camper in Missoula, which allowed me to do a 15 mile run in the Rattlesnake Wilderness Area. I've often wondered about the variations of advice regarding long run pace. Most of the time, I just meander along, not paying much attention to time. On trails, I am SLLLOOOWWW, especially if there are a lot of climbs. This could be that I'm often just plain lazy and don't really try to make an effort.
The trails in the Rattlesnake vary from rolling to steep. I wanted to TRY and keep my average pace around 11 min/mile, running everything I possibly could. The plan was to go really easy with a few miles at a faster pace in the middle. Somehow, motivation kicked in, and six of the fifteen miles were at a 9:30-9:40 pace, with the rest all over the place depending on how steep the sections were. At the end of the run, my average pace was 10:58!!! It was fun and not quite as painful as I expected.
However, the down side was a lot of soreness the next day, especially in my hip flexors. My questions is - do most of you experience this the day after a long run or do you make your long runs really slow and have a faster, easier recovery? Either way, I got to run here...
As for the camping, it was fun. Buddy wasn't quite sure what to think. In fact, he kept me awake until 3am trying to decide if it was safet to sleep. And, of course, he claimed the bed.
Gotta love this dog though. It's been too hot in the afternoon for him to run, at least until he sheds the winter coat. We've adapted with Buddy jumping on the bed at 5:45 am to run while watching the sun rise over the mountains. Only for my dog!