After a few weeks of less-than-stellar training, I credit Jackie for helping me get my butt in gear today.
This morning – two weeks before race day – we planned to try out the Lorneville Loop route. She suggested we meet up at 8 a.m. I agreed, although I was nervous about the early start and the chilly morning forecast. When my alarm went off just after 7, I was surprised that my nine-month-old boy was still asleep in his room. (He had woken up around 3 a.m. for a quick feeding). I shuffled around to make coffee and one slice of toast with honey, my favourite pre-workout fuel, and get dressed before breastfeeding him and getting out the door.
When Jackie came to get me, I could tell she felt nervous too. You see, our lives are pretty similar right now. We both have babies that are about nine months old and who don’t always feel like sleeping through the night. We also both ran half-marathons in October 2013, when our babies were just weeks along in pregnancy, and we’re both eager to get back into distance running.
We drove to Lorneville, which is at the western edge of Saint John, along the Bay of Fundy. It was cold, about -7 C, but the sun was brilliant and warm. We parked at a convenience store and headed out along Lorneville Road, which hugs the the coast for a few kilometres. There were a few big hills, but the scenery was stunning. The air was still and there was no traffic. We both reveled in the delights of running on bare pavement rather than the incessant treadmill on an early spring day.
As we looped back onto King William Road, my legs felt heavier and I couldn’t muster the energy to make conversation. I wanted to stop and walk but told myself to keep up with my friend. As we hit the 10 km mark, it was like my body knew we were headed in uncharted territory. I have not run that far for a year and a half. But we kept steady on the flat terrain and found our way back to the store. Jackie actually continued for another kilometre to make her run an even 14 km (she’s training for a half). I stumbled back to the car.
But, we did it! And at a decent pace, too at 6:28 min/km.
Not bad for two women who had babies nine months ago.