My old Garmin was a 305. I bought it for something like $170 about 18 months ago. It was bulky but it was so cool. To be able to see my splits, even when I really didn’t want to, and see my route so clearly marked out with elevation changes, my heart rate (when I chose to wear the monitor) and to be able to keep track of my mileage on a very cool Garmin Calendar was pretty spectacular. It also kept track of my bike rides, miles per hour, etc. I loved it.
About 6 months ago, however, my strap broke. Not entirely, just a small, but necessary, piece broke off. I couldn’t strap it to my wrist anymore. I usually run in the morning in a sweatshirt that has a front pocket, so I would just start the Garmin and throw it into my pocket. It worked fine, but I almost lost it a couple of times because it would bounce right out. Most mornings I’d catch it before it fell, but a couple of weekend runs where I was listening to my iPod and distracted, I almost ran away from it on the ground.
It provided a nice excuse to start thinking about a new Garmin. It was just too easy to go and buy a new strap. I needed a whole new toy. Besides, my little brother had started running and didn’t have a Garmin. I figured if I bought myself a new one I’d send him my old one and he’d be thrilled to get it and happily replace the strap. So me and my Easter Bunny alter ego went to REI.
I looked at every Garmin they had. I told the sales guy I was just looking, not ready to buy, but I think he could tell by my drooling behavior that was a lie. He told me everything about every one of them and then I asked him which one he owned. It was the 610. So he told me even more about the 610. At first blush I wanted the 610 because it was attractive. C’mon, I’m a girl. It matters. But I liked the fact that it vibrated at the mile marks, instead of beeped, had an easy to use virtual trainer, a touch screen and the transfer of data to the computer was done wirelessly. Very cool.
It was $399 with a heart rate monitor. I didn’t need the heart rate monitor, since I had a compatible one that I wouldn’t give my brother; I had a $25 REI gift card from work and it was some spectacular savings weekend at REI for members so I got an additional 20% off. All told I paid $274.96 and I was thrilled to do so. It’s pretty awesome. And it looks good. 🙂
I’ve had it for a couple of weeks and I really like it. The charge stays a lot longer than the 305 and it finds the satellites a lot quicker. The touch screen is wonderful because I don’t always have to look at my pace, mileage, etc. I can swipe the screen and instead just have the clock showing. Even with the clock showing it will still vibrate on my arm to let me know I’ve gone another mile. And speaking of miles . . . .
Feeling a bit down on my running after my failed marathon I cringed a little when I noticed I was supposed to run 20 miles yesterday. I only cringed a little because I love long runs. So the cringing was only due to the fact that I had some doubt in my mind that I could actually do it after NOT being able to do the whole 26.2 two weeks earlier. The mind can be so brutal at times.
I ran my 5, 8, 5 and 5 the rest of the week. No problem. But Saturday night with all the normal excitement of getting to run long I also worried.
Regardless, I got out of the house by 4:30 that morning. I took the long way out-of-town because I wasn’t wearing my attractive headlamp or the lovely and fashionable reflective vest. I wasn’t feeling either of them and I wanted to enjoy the run without feeling like I was looking like a goober. Even though I recognized at 4:30 in the morning it was dark and looking like a goober would be far better than getting hit by the crazy dude who delivers papers, since he’s usually the only person I see til about 5:30. I took the chance anyway and just went the long, lighted, well-traveled way.
By the time I got to the main road that would lead me out-of-town I was starting to doubt myself. But I pushed on. When I got to 5 miles I stopped and had my Power Bar Gel and some water. Because I was on the main road with a lot of traffic for 5:15 a.m. on a Sunday I turned on my iPod. I have over 500 songs on my iPod, but I’d made a new playlist for this long run. I wasn’t sure how I was going to do with it, but I took 4 of my favorite running songs and put them alone on a playlist. So they repeated the entire time.
My Long Run Playlist:
(all have great beats for running, I love them all – and am grateful my 18 year old introduced me to them . . . )
It worked well for me. They shuffled through and every third song my Garmin would vibrate a mile had passed. I still doubted myself the whole way. I kept thinking I should turn around even though I had told myself I was not out there to break any records, I was just out there to make the mileage. I just wanted to remind myself that I could do it.
It was supposed to be 20, but it only turned into 18. When I passed the sign that said Welcome to Tigard, I was ready to come home. I didn’t want to turn left at Durham and go to Hall. That’s the point I hit 10 miles and know that I can head home and meet 20. I couldn’t push myself to do it. Instead I turned right and headed back towards Bridgeport, back towards home. I felt very little guilt over cutting off those two miles. Probably because I was so relieved I had passed 13.1 without issue.
No shin splints, no knee pain, no cramping of the calves, thighs or feet. Just me, a little bit of rain, the road and my four songs. My happy place for sure.
When I got back to the main road to take me back into my town it was almost 8 a.m. The main road is a busy, busy street on any given day at any given time and I hate to be on it when its super busy because I always get a lot of honks and hollers. As far as suburbs go, mine isn’t that big. I’ve lived here for 9 years and I have two boys who play football and are very social — I was also married to a man who was loud and talkative . . . . everyone, it seems, knows me. I also stand out because I’m one of a handful (I think we’re up to 12) black people in this town. So when cars pass and people yell my name (which is unique in and of itself), honk and wave . . . even if I can’t tell who they are, I’m fairly certain they know who I am and its distracting.
Even with the distractions I made it home before my children were up and successfully reminded myself that I can run farther than I thought I could a mere two weeks ago. I know I could have done it quicker than I did yesterday, but I’ll save that. I’m supposed to run 20 again in two weeks and it will be a pleasure to do the whole thing a tad bit quicker.
No running today. I rested. Even took the day off of work.
Blue Eyes didn’t work today either so he took a 45 minute drive down and spent a couple of hours with me, but that’s a different post that I haven’t written yet.
Sunday was a good day for running and today was a fine day for relaxing and recovering. I know because I can’t wait to run again. I love it when that happens!