I started for bed around 10:00 last night. Then I checked the blogs and found I had missed a couple of people when I transferred from bloglines to blogger's list, so I fixed that. Then I decided to update the play list on my ipod shuffle, so by the time I hit the pillow it was nearly 11:30. I set my watch alarm for 5:30 with plans to meet the CA Cruisers for another go at the 2 Parks-2 Loops route. We had last done this route four weeks ago.
I awoke this morning on my own to more daylight than I expected. I jumped up to find that it was already 6:20. I never even heard the alarm. 6:20 still gave me enough time to get the bare necessities done - brush the teeth, eat a pb&j, get dressed, grab all my stuff and be on my way. I would still make it to Brea to meet everyone at 7:00.
I was about 3 miles from home, about to get on the freeway, when I realized that I had forgotten my new shin thingy. So back home I went. I had used the support on my 5 miler on Wednesday with good results. I didn't want to try to run the 16 miles without it. With the extra trip there was no way I was going to make it to Brea on time. I considered going to the beach or to the Santa Ana River Trail instead but finally decided to go to Brea and see if I could catch up with anybody. The 2 loop course offers a couple of chances to run into folks on their way out and back.
Apparently I was not the only one running late today. As I drove into the parking lot, Michelle was just taking off. I gave a shout but she didn't hear me. We've run together before, our paces used to be about the same. Just as I was about ready to head out Renee pulled into the parking lot so we joined forces.
She wasn't familiar with the route so I took on the guide dog responsibilities. Renee is coming back from little running over the summer and with kids in school is struggling to find time to run mid week. She was afraid that her slow pace was holding me back, but in my current situation it was just fine. She even took walk breaks with me on the 7:1 schedule I was using.
We did two circuits of the 2 Parks-2 Loops route, about 10 miles, and she called it a day. We did run into a couple of the other Cruisers out there. I then headed off on my own and added the Summit Hill Loop and another lap of park #1 (Craig Park) to get in my requisite 16 miles.
I didn't keep strict time overall, but by pace was somewhere beyond 11:00 minutes per mile. This is slower than I'd like but the good thing about it is that I had plenty of gas in the tank at the end of 16 miles and the pace and run:walk combo seems to be good for the leg.
I'm really happy with the shin thingy. My only complaint is that I had to stop a couple of times to get it tight enough to stay put on my calf. It tended to drift down toward my ankle. I think a little medical grade tape might fix that. I may need to consider strategically shaving that leg, a la Donald, to make the tape removal a little less painful.
My primary focus is staying healthy and maintaining the gains with the leg and crossing that finish line sometime before they dismantle it in Memphis. Today's run makes me feel better about that possibility. Today, running late was just what I needed.