In the beginning of this year I sat down and started to put together what my running goals would be for 2016. I needed a bigger challenge, something that would push me to new limits. I had decided that I would commit to doing my first 30K. With 9 Half Marathons in two years I figured it was time to stretch the distance. This sounded great in the beginning of the year. I ran a Half in April, May and June. Since then I have been consistently running four to five days a week yet my long runs are not as long as I would want them to be. Between the summer heat, blazing sun and ridiculous humidity Vermont received this summer, it challenged my distance running. I was beginning to wonder what would come of my big goal for 2016.
I decided last Friday that the first thing I needed to do was officially register for this race. If I registered I would be sure to follow through. Honestly I wasn't too worried about backing out. If I set my mind to something I am pretty good about committing and reaching that goal. I enjoy a challenge as well as know that hard moments of training only make me a better runner. This meant that with the race on September 17th I needed to get my ass in gear and start throwing in some longer runs.
Sunday I set out to do a minimum of 13. My heart really wanted 15 but I wasn't going to push myself if I wasn't feeling well. I knew my biggest challenge would be slowing my pace down and focus on my endurance. The bottom line of this 30K is to finish it, not to worry about speed. Anywhere between 8/8:15 minute mile is where I am most comfortable once I get in a groove on my regular runs. During a race I like to push and try to keep myself around 7:30 MM. I figured a safe place to complete 18.6 miles would be somewhere between 8:20/8:30 minute mile.
I started out nice and slow. I held my pace around 8:40 for the first three miles. The route I was taken would throw me some nice hills and I needed to be sure I was saving my energy for all the right places. Around mile 7 (this always seems to be my sweet spot) I had fallen into a nice pace of 8:20-ish. Sometimes a little faster and some miles definitely slower. I was feeling pretty good and happy to have my Camelback to keep me hydrated and fueled. Coming up on mile 11 I hit my last big hill and I knew if I could just get through that hitting fifteen would be attainable. 13 came and went, 15 snuck up on me and this is when I decided I would go for 16. Happy to see 16, I realize that I still was about a mile out from my destination so why not try to hit 17. The most I had previously run was 16 and that was last year. With determination, lots of sweat, my GU's and Vfuel I made it to 17 miles!
I was elated to have had such a great run. I finished feeling good and definitely was basking in a runner's high. I am still nervous about the 30K and know I need to get a couple more long runs in. I don't intend to try to hit 18.6 until that day. If I can get in a couple more13 to 15 milers in I will be happy. I want to save that mileage for the finish line the day of my race.
Okay friends, enough about me. Let's talk about socks! As a runner it is important for me to wear good running socks. I need to do my best to protect my poor, ugly running feet the best I can. It is inevitable that I get blisters from time to time and the heels of my feet are hard and splitting. Sexy right?! Hey, so far I have all my toenails and in my book that is pretty good. I do have to cover them up with polish since they too are not the prettiest but that's OK! I was asked to try SLS3's new running performance sock. No twisting my arm here!
Here is a little about the sock:
* Cushioning at the heel and toes for impact protection
* Mesh ventilation panels, moisture wicking, and arch support to ensure comfort
* A "Y" heel gore and heel tab to prevent slipping
* Made in fun bright colors!!!
I have taken mine out for a few runs a do like them. I find them comfortable and my feet do not sweat in these. I even wore them on my long run and came back blister free. I like that it comes up high in the back to prevent from rubbing and blisters.
My only complaint is that I think I would go a size up next time. I had ordered a small but after a couple washes they seemed to shrink a little. Nothing crazy though and I am still using them.
If you want to try them out head over to Amazon and use code DKJIJERK for $5.00 off a three pack!
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Disclaimer: I was given a pair of SlS3 socks in trade of a honest review. I was not compensated in any other way. As always, all opinions are proudly my own.