So, the first 4.5 miles was on and off again. The wind was strong, and they apparently were running faster than typical, so part of it was more effort to keep up, but I did it and was not last :) Then, there was a short 10 minute gatorade/powerade/water break, and then the group did another 1.5 mile out-and-back. I felt strong after that still, but the first 2-3 minutes after the break was tough on my legs...they thought they were done working for the morning! But after the initial 2-3 minutes, I was actually able to pick up the pace and get near the lead group (which primarily consisted of teens). We stopped back at the water stop for a few...and I made the decision not to go all the way back with the bigger group. I felt strong at that point, but didn't want to push it too much. After all, I did just do 6.3 miles (longer than I ever did before), and doing the entire 11 was probably too much of a shock to my system!
So, the "water duty" person gave me a lift back to my car....otherwise, I would have had to wait for the trolley (which is free at least) to go back to the beach parking lot.
I really felt good though...I do think I would have been able to finish the additional 4.5 miles! Granted, when I got out of the car after that 5 minute drive, I felt my legs immediately, but after walking for a minute or two on the way to my car, they felt fine. Yes, even after this, I think I could have completed the 11 miles.
I'm actually a bit surprised by this! I wasn't the slowest out there, but again, I was exerting more effort compared to the others where this is by far their slowest run. Doesn't matter though....I was proud of my accomplishments...and I do think I'll go for that 11 miles next week :) If I'm able to do most sunday runs with them, I will definitely be ready for my first half in February! Maybe I can even target 2:15 as my goal, right? Sure, there are two significant breaks on this 11 mile weekly jaunt, but I will be so prepared and have a solid base going into the race! I'm excited to join them again next week!