Today I finally (i.e. delayed by a week) ran my first 20-mile training run. It was the first of three 20+ mile runs in this cycle. I decided to run an out-and-back on the Centennial Trail, starting in Snohomish, WA. I was dry for 11 miles, then the skies opened up, and every inch of my body was soaked thoroughly. It was a total monsoon, with wind and torrents of horizontal rain (I even got hailed on a couple of times). I was soaked to the bone, and my shoes had puddles IN them. I was colder and wetter than I've ever been. That actually "encouraged" my pace on the way back. I went out slowly (8:57 avg), then back a little quicker (8:02 avg). I felt comfortable, pace-wise, the whole time. Could have gone faster than 8's on the way back, and could have run further (although not in the present conditions), so it was a good confidence builder. My average HR was low, too (133 bpm), which is what I was shooting for. I'm a huge believer in ice baths, but since I was nearly hypothermic after this run (it took both hands to start my truck, and I was shaking badly on the drive home), I chose a hot shower instead. Still iced the knees and I might take an ice bath later this evening.
So, weather and borderline pneumonia aside, it was a great run! Oh - and it put me over 500 running miles (517) for the year - by far the earliest I've hit that mark.