Day began at 4:12 a.m. I know that seems early, even for meeting up with runners at six o’clock. But I like to have some time before my runs to eat, get the dogs out for a walk, etc. I left the house at 5:35 and got to the meet-up site at about ten till. My first ever training run with CARA went pretty well. I was hoping to go along at a bit faster pace, but it seems they were a lead pacer short today. Anyway, got in a decent 10-miler and met some new people which was part of the reason for joining the club. The other reason was motivation to get my runs done early on the weekends – which will be helpful when it gets hotter, and when the rest of the family wants to go do something instead of waiting around for me to finish my run.
I’ve come to realize most runners are pretty nice people, so being surrounding with quality personalities on my favorite run of the week (long runs) seems like an excellent way to kick off a Saturday, regardless of how early I get up. I went to bed around 10 p.m., so I had a good 6+ hours of sleep, which is about all I need, at least, if I am only doing it once a week. Otherwise I’d prefer closer to seven, or eight hours – who wouldn’t right? We met up at the Chicago Yacht Club off of Monroe and headed north with a cool breeze in our faces and temps in the mid-fifties – it was slightly chilly but not bad. Very humid and foggy however; it felt like we were running through a cloud. Quite a few other runners were out today as well, but we only had 6 in our group so we didn’t take up too much of the path. The chat was light, as expected for first runs with strangers; and the pace was comfortable, very similar to what I did at the Soldier Field 10 Mile, which I ran with a friend to help him pace and just have a fun run. Today we started with 4 miles going north, back south again, then past the starting point for another mile, before looping back on our last leg of the run. On the last mile we got some light rain, but nothing terribly bad. Overall a somewhat uneventful run, but was relaxing to watch the waves on the lake in the morning air, and just soak up the run with other people all more or less there for the same thing. First long run of the Chicago Marathon training program is enjoyably complete.