It was great to see friends - Hicham and Jaymie were gracious and wonderful hosts - and run together for loop at least (Hi Mike!). I don't regret going in the least, but I really wish the VFAC boys had been able to come over, especially after our workout last night.
Coming back from 4 x 5k on Tuesday, we had 2 x 3 miles on Thursday with the VFAC crew. 3 miles is 4.8 km, so not quite the 5k, but since we were running in the dark on a hilly course, we can say that is close to 5k in time, although this futile exercise in trying to equate times is a habit that runners find hard to break. I was not looking forward to the workout after suffering for the last two laps of Thetis. This was even more the case when John said that I was to run 5:20 miles for the workout. I looked at Mike Wood, our final runner for Haney to Harrison last week, and openly scoffed. I was quick to follow up that John had this way of somehow knowing what is within you even when you don't.
I went out with Ynuk, Simon, and Jay for our first of two loops. We joked for the first kilometer before settling in (read: Simon and Jay left us). Ynuk and I ran together for a bit before he left me on the first of the three longer hills on the Stanley Park loop. I ran more conservatively for two reasons: not knowing how Tuesday would play into the latter stages of the loop and knowing that I could make time up on the downhills. This worked well as I stayed at the high end of comfortable and pushed through the remaining two hills, finishing in 16:10. This equates to 5:23/mile. I was even more surprised when I finished the second loop within spitting distance of Simon (he of the newborn baby and 3 hours of sleep each night), in 16:04.
I was impressed with these times because I felt strong throughout the workout, I am coming off two races in 4 days, I descended the workout (ran faster during the second loop), and both times were faster than 1 year ago (when I ran 16:15 on a similar night). That night I was shocked and excited about the time. This year is more relief that I am back to where I was a year ago, which means I can be fit come spring!
OH! The bad news. My phone died on me whilst I was in Victoria. The good news? I got a deal on a new iPhone. That, my friends, shocked and excited me!