16 Miles Down... 26.2 still to go!!!
We completed our 16 mile run. I am not going to say it was easy but... 3 of us completed all 16 miles. I ran further on the Rillito River path than I've ever run before. I have run further distances a few times but I usually doubled back in a section to complete the miles. This time, we ran all the way to Swan. One of the bridges over the river had a pretty steep incline and decline so that was an interesting challenge when you are at about 9 or 10 miles into the run. I guess it's good practice for San Francisco, right? There were a few people that are doing the marathon that only did 14 miles instead of the 16 (our mileage for the day was 14-16 but I usually do the longest distance). I kept thinking to myself after I heard that that those people will have a harder time in a couple weeks when we are supposed to do 18 miles.
After our 16 miler, our coaches greeted me with the "Spirit Quilt". A friend of TNT makes a quilt for each traning "season" and the one you see pictured above is the one for the fall season. Most of the people I am training with are doing the Nike Women's Marathon or half marathon but we have a couple people doing the Maui Half Marathon. So this is our quilt for our season. It must have taken a ton of work because it actually mimics the logo for the Nike Women's Marathon. Also featured on it is our honored teammate, Marisa Gallego. As I mentioned in one of my previous blogs, our training is dedicated to her memory. She lost her battle in April and several of her family members are training with us for Nike. I get to keep the quilt for a week and then it goes to someone else.
Also, some of our Saturday runs with Team in Training have been at Sabino Canyon. Since Dan & I moved to Tucson over 4 years ago, we have a list of local places that we keep meaning to visit but have not yet. Sabino Canyon is one of those places. Well, now I have been but it's still on Dan's list. Literally, we run in the canyon, which has a paved path for 3.7 miles. However, it's hilly. And did I mention we have to run through water? Because it is a canyon, at certain times of the year, the water runs over the man-made bridges. This was the case with 2 of the 8(?) bridges and we ended up running through the water 6 times to get our 10 miles in for the day. The first time I went through it, I was kind of mad. I could feel the water sloshing around in my shoes and I was worried about blisters. But as the run/walk (there are some HILLS) went on, I found the water refreshing. We'll be going back one more time, I think. I missed the first couple visits there because they happened to be when Dan & I were on vacation. Next time, I will bring my camera so you can see the beauty. Oh, and since we are in the canyon, nearly all of the run is shady. I love shade!