Well, I finished the killer 20 minute run. Huzzah!
I jogged the first 5 minutes at 4.2 and then did the rest at 4 mph. So, slow, yes, but doable--and I completed it, so that's saying something. Part of me wonders if the .2 less was actually easier, or if my brain tricked my body into thinking so? Anyway... I know that I ran a mile today. It's been a while since I've done that. And I didn't even cry! haha. (confused? read this) Moving forward, I think I'll tackle these longer runs at a slower speed and the shorter runs at a faster speed. Maybe this will help with conditioning... maybe not.
It felt good to finish such a long run. I had my doubts and concerns, but I fought through them. Who knows how I'll feel about the runs for the next four weeks, but I'm glad I know I can finish 20 minutes.