It's often said that perception is reality. Now this may be true but reality tends to kick perception's ass most of the time too.
Even though I had the alarm set for 3:30, I didn't roll out of bed until almost 5 and wasn't on the road until 6:30. It also turned out to be slightly warmer than I was expecting it to be at 81 but at least there was a good amount of cloud cover.
The warmup mile was going great, pace was ok, HR was down and everything felt right until I came across a loose dog who was not in a good mood. He didn't come at me or anything but it still spiked my HR from the one-teens to almost 140. This was was going to set the tone for the rest of the run too.
After that bit of excitement I walked it down to the low 100s and then started to bring it up gradually until I hit the 1 mile mark. At this point there was still plenty of cloud cover and I was feeling on top of the world. I didn't know where my pace was but I was feeling fast. When I hit the mile 2 split and came in at just under 12 minutes, I was ecstatic. Unfortunately this feeling was not going to last.
Here's where the perception/reality thing comes into play.
While I was feeling great and cruising right along, the second the sun broke through the clouds just before the split, my HR jumped. Yes, even though I was feeling great, and didn't perceive anything different, in all actuality I was perceiving everything to be fantastic, physiologically my body got all defensive and prepared for the worst. It was on.
From here on it was a battle to keep the HR down. While mile 3 came in at 12:33, the rest of the run was much slower. There was nothing I could do but go with the flow.
The next few miles were in the low-13s but by mile 7 I could tell that it was almost over. I had planned to run 2.5 hours (11+ miles) I knew I had to cut it short and only do 2+ hours. Of course I was disappointed but I also have to listen to my body and do what is best.
There's no use getting all worked up about it but damn. It was only 91 when I finished the run and while that seems like it's hot, here in the desert with 30-40% humidity, that is quite pleasant. Or so I thought. Reality is a bitch I guess.
So I'll just have to accept it for what is was and I will be back out in the morning. At least I get to sleep in with the alarm set to 4:30.
Week ending July 11th - 26.1 miles