Down the mountain

Back in April, I wrote a post titled "The final disappointment" about missing the Blue Ridge Half Marathon in Roanoke -- it was sort of the final thing that I couldn't do because of my ITB injury. Today on my lunch run with a few co-workers, we did a point-to-point run from the top of the mountain back to our office. I didn't talk about today, but doing this run felt more important to me than any of my PRs have this year. I really enjoyed running in the mountains the first half of last year -- there's a huge sense of accomplishment of going both up and down a mountain.

I mean, really ... it's a mountain. It's not a hill. It's a mountain. Say what you want about this being the downhill part of the mountain, but 2 miles downhill is brutal. My quads were on fire at the bottom.

Mill Mountain, Roanoke

The great thing about this was keeping a steady pace in the second half of the run that looks flat, but certainly wasn't.

I'll be climbing a mountain again eventually, but I believe that the importance of going downhill is bigger than uphill. Downhill is when the pain started in October, plus it's really hard on the legs on longer downhills. Plus the Baltimore Marathon has a downhill finish -- running down mountains certainly will help prepare for that.

Just like yesterday with two great runs and passing 100 miles for this month, today is yet another milestone in my training journey this summer. Now I need all the pieces to come together to avoid a repeat of this past weekend's long run.