Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Charleston Update

"Life (and running) is not all about time but about our experiences along the way." - Jennifer Rhines, Olympic Runner

My wife and I moved to Charleston, SC three weeks ago, and we have loved every minute of it so far.  The weather has been nearly perfect so we have spent a lot of time at the beach and a lot of time exploring the city.  It only took me a couple of days to get into a running routine, and I have started to build my mileage in order to get ready for the Cremator 50

My first two runs were vastly different from each other but both of them provided me with a little insight as to what running in Charleston is going to be like.  My first run was an unplanned 6 miles the first day we were here in order to stretch my legs from the 8+ hour drive.  What started out as an easy run quickly turned into a run that ended up averaging a pace of 6:39 per mile.  It was relatively easy to run that pace because of Charleston's lack of hills. Two days later I set out on a 20 mile adventure run so that I could explore the city.  I decided to run over the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge since it is the only resemblance of a hill that Charleston has to offer (I have a feeling I will be spending a lot of time on this bridge).  About 9 miles into this run I came to my other realization - it's even hotter and more humid than I was expecting as I had already gone through two full bottles of water without even realizing it.  Normally two bottles will last 20-25 miles but in this part of the country it is hard to drink enough while running because of the heat and humidity.

Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge at sunset
Running and biking path along the bridge
I started running with a great group of runners the first Sunday morning I was here. I have continued running with them each Sunday since, and we run 10+ miles at a fairly quick pace.  They have welcomed me into their group with open arms and have been telling me about several other group runs throughout the week of which I plan to join.  I plan to add in fast tempo runs and track workouts in order to get my leg speed faster - all that will happen soon enough. 

Running in Charleston is different than what I am use to - it is flat and fast here. Currently I am averaging 80 mpw. If I can build my mileage to the low 100s and acclimate to the heat, I hope to run a sub 6:40 at the Cremator 50 in late July.  

My wife and I are settling in easily in here. This is one of the most charming city's I've visited, and I'm excited to now call it home. It's great to run long and hard, and then spend the rest of the day recuperating in front of the ocean. Not too shabby if you ask me.

Enjoying a stroll on the beach after running 25 miles that morning

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