For me, there is an exciting moment when the Garmin beeps, and I realize that I have just run 20 miles. I don’t think there is anything more reassuring during marathon training than knowing that you have hit that milestone. It is the moment (for me, anyway) where I realize that I am going to be able to run this beast of a distance.
THANK GOODNESS I was able to experience that moment again this past weekend.
I was worried about Saturday’s run because my last attempt at a long run ended with a 5 mile walk home. I also approached it cautiously since my last successful long run was 17.5 miles…more of a mileage jump than I’d like.
The weather on Saturday was supposed to be pleasant during the morning and rainy in the afternoon, but I think weather.com lied. Because it was windy and snowy (I was wearing shorts) so, it wasn’t the least miserable run ever. Aaron had to work on Saturday morning, so I ran this one solo, but he did get out on his bike to meet me at about mile 14.
As luck would have it, I ran into a coyote during this rare solo run. It just ran across the road in front of me, and then stood there, about 10 feet away, eating something while I had a heart attack. Albuquerque is a city where coyotes can be found in just about every part of town, but this was only my second time running into one. My reaction was to freeze, call Aaron (more as an “in case I die, this is where to find me” precaution), walk slowly, and then bolt. It worked, apparently, but I was pretty nervous. That mile split was about 13:00.
Also, it is worth acknowledging that despite the random snow storm on Saturday, we have had great spring time weather which unfortunately means pollen. I only developed allergies maybe 2 years ago, but now I’m a sneezy little person. This past week, I have hacked up more yuck stuff from my throat then I care to think about. I also think, unscientifically, that my lungs aren’t taking in adequate amounts of oxygen, leaving me much more out of breath than I should be. All part of the sport I suppose.
Otherwise, the run went as well as it could. I was expecting to feel like hell at mile 19 since I hadn’t built up the mileage, but everything felt great during and post run. We celebrated victory by watching basketball ALL day. Aaron’s team (New Mexico) lost by 1 point in the last few seconds. I was only minorly sad since I typically don’t cheer for the Lobos, but the environment of disappointment was almost too much to handle at the sports bar. Except for the lady watching hockey. She didn’t care.
Meanwhile, my Saint Mary’s Gaels won by 3 points and are set to play Gonzaga for the WCC championships tonight. Interestingly enough, the way the current bracket predictions are going, Saint Mary’s COULD play New Mexico in the 3rd round. I do not want to see what this might look like for our marriage. Also, I would fear for my life if I went anywhere in this town with an SMC shirt should that game occur (though really, the odds of us getting past the 2nd round aren’t high).
I have a back down off it week this week including Bataan next weekend (14.2 trail race) and then one last long run before tapering. SO NUTTY. This has gone by so much faster the second time around. And I’m so thankful that aside from some minor hiccups, I’ve managed to stay injury free. Let’s just hope I can get through the next 2 weeks without any major issues!
Monday: 5 mile recovery run
Tuesday: 1.2 mile walk (had to postpone the scheduled workout to Wednesday morning)
Wednesday: 8 x hill repeats (7 miles total) + 1 hour spin
Thursday: 5.5 mile tempo run/7.5 miles total, 58:48 (7:58 pace). I really wanted to die for a lot of this, and had to stop on about 3 occasions to cough stuff up.
Saturday: 20 miles!!! 3:03:34 (9:10 pace)
Sunday: BLERG. We put off running until the afternoon because we didn’t get up in time (time change), but on my way back home from lunch with my family, I started feeling really sick and I spent the afternoon in bed sleeping. The thermometer confirmed my fever. I’m feeling fine today (even though I still technically have a fever…don’t tell), but I was looking forward to celebrating 50 miles this week, and now I can’t.
TOTAL MILEAGE: 40.7
I think this week was one of those that really shows how hard it is to lose weight while marathon training. Spinach salad with grilled chicken just wasn’t enough to satisfy my enormous hunger, and after a hard workout, the last thing I wanted to do was more squats. Sunday night is usually our yoga night, but I wasn’t up for it yesterday. Staying on track with my goals was just much harder than it has been. With 5 weeks to go, I’m running out of chances to hit 2 perfect weeks in a row.