Skip to main content

San Antonio (FL) Hill Run

I'm learning a lot about Florida, after living here for most of my life--and not just from the seemingly recent onslaught of bizarre national news headlines--but also from running in new places. This past weekend I finally went out to the city of San Antonio, where runners and cyclists gather in hordes for hill training. I've known about this place for a couple of years, but I haven't really wanted to make the 45-minute drive out there so I could endure more difficult terrain on my already-challenging long runs. But because I chose a hilly marathon this year, it was essential that I get in more hill training than the one Ohio run I did the weekend prior.

So Tim and I headed out there early Saturday morning to meet a bunch of others at 6:00am. I would be running with my run-buddy Nicole, and neither of us had been there before, nor did we know what route we were running. But luckily some veterans of the course gave us basic directions, and then then guys took off with us following behind.

The landscape was beautiful--tall, shady trees lining the roads with open fields behind. And the weather was, dare I say, cool. It didn't feel like the dead of summer in Florida. I'm not sure if it was a fluke on that particular morning, or if the area is just cooler because it's farther north, but it was rather lovely. I felt somewhat like I was back in Ohio, also because of the hills--which approached rapidly on our course. And let me tell you, anyone who doesn't believe Florida has hills has never been to San Antonio. These hills can hold their own. We basically stayed on the same main road for nearly seven miles, and the flat parts were few and far between.

There were times during the run when I kept waiting for the resting point--usually after reaching the top of a hill; but we only stopped twice--once we reached seven miles, and then at about 11.3 miles, where the organizers had dropped water and sports drinks for everyone to take from. These types of drops are essential when running in places without water fountains along the route, so I was extremely grateful (and thirsty!).

We finished our run in good time--averaging a 9:37 pace, which is much better than I'd been doing on long runs prior to that (Ohio aside). I accredit the added speed to the weather, but also to running with Nicole. She's a faster starter than I am, so I am challenged to get into a quicker pace from the beginning; and I tend to be a faster finisher, so we make good partners in that way.

This upcoming weekend I'll be running my first 20-miler of training. It will not involve hills. Wish me luck!


B.o.B. said…
Awesome job lady!!! Those hills are tough. :)

People Liked to Read...

Surgery Chronicles: I Exhale

I've really been holding my breath with this recovery, more so than the last one for some reason. After getting past the three-week point (which was two weeks ago, when I started to write this), I felt a little more at ease. Since then I've been changing my own dressing daily and slowly weaning off of crutches so I can now walk around in the boot—hands-free! I'm still a slave to icing and elevating as much as possible throughout the day. But the very best part? There's no other foot left to do. After this, I'm done, done, done. I can start to return to a life not defined by sitting and waiting and feeling confined and limited and trying my hardest to heal but having little actual control over any of it.

I wrote in my last post about the difficult emotions I'd been having throughout this second surgery recovery. I think I underestimated the psychological toll I would take doing one foot right after the other. And while there was a feeling of elation after gettin…

Surgery Chronicles: 12 Weeks and Progress

I'm now more than 12 weeks recovered from my second (and final!) foot surgery, and life is starting to feel a little more normal. When I last wrote an update, seven weeks ago (still blaming Irma for all of my delays), I had just gotten off of crutches but would wear my boot for two more weeks. I've been out of the boot and walking in shoes for just over five weeks. The constant discomfort I've felt in my foot from swelling is finally starting to wane. I work in the office now, I do my own groceries, and I even attended a work conference recently, which meant lots of walking at airports and the conference hotel, frequent standing, and few opportunities to elevate and ice. I was very concerned about how my feet, particularly the left one, would endure. And while it wasn't comfortable, I made it through, no worse for the wear in the end.

I joined a new gym/community center recently, with a new and beautiful outdoor pool, and I'm so happy that I'm able to use it n…

Irma: A (Mostly) Photo Essay

For nearly three weeks I've struggled to find the right words to write about Hurricane Irma, which destroyed islands in the Caribbean, then hit South Florida, eventually coming up the center of the state. The Tampa Bay region got really lucky in the end, as it avoided a direct hit and the storm had diminished to a category 2 by the time it arrived. And now Puerto Rico is experiencing a humanitarian crisis after being pummeled by Hurricane Maria. My heart goes out to those people.

My plan when severe weather is forecast to for Tampa is always to go to my sister's house, as the area I live in is highly flood prone and she is on higher ground. This time was no exception; however, her plan was different. She wanted to leave, head north, get out of the state, and she wanted me to go with her and the rest of the family. But I was not in a place to pack up and leave. I had real concerns about my foot recovery; I was about eight weeks post-surgery and very newly out of the boot and in…