22 miles is a long way to run

Today marked the longest training run of my marathon preparation.  In a perfect world, I would have done this run next weekend, but I will be shocking my system at Tough Mudder Wisconsin next weekend. 

I decided to use the Gymboss again for this run.  I felt that it worked well for my last 20 miler and I wanted to see if I could have a similar experience this time. 

It was another gorgeous morning.  My alarm went off at 4:46 and I hopped right out of bed.  I really don’t know why it is so difficult for me to get out of bed on a normal day, at a normal time; but I can bound out of bed for my long runs at a time that most people would consider the middle of the night.  Does this happen to anyone else?  Anyway, Jaden woke up around 5:00, not feeling well.  He had to have a minor surgery a few days ago and it has been slowing him down.  I gave him some Tylenol, assured him that it really was the middle of the night, and sent him back to bed.

I had my typical breakfast of white rice with cinnamon and sugar.  You’d think I’d be sick of that meal, but it has worked so well for my stomach that I am scared to try anything else.  I was on the road by 5:20. 

It was still dark out when I started, so I wore my little, red, flashing light to alert anyone else who happened to be awake at the time of my presence.  The moon was beautiful.  The sky was clear and the stars were so bright.  There was a slight breeze and I could almost smell autumn in the air.  I kinda wished that I had gotten up even earlier, so that I could enjoy more of my run in those conditions.  There is something so peaceful when you are out during that time of morning.

I ran the entirety of the first lap (a bit more than 2.5 miles), and then started the Gymboss.  I had it set to the same ratio as last time: 4 minutes of running, 1 minute of walking.  After each lap, I would stop at my mailbox for a drink and to grab some fuel.  After a couple laps, I started carrying one of my smaller water bottles with me.  I found that I needed hydration more frequently.  (I should have worn my hydration belt, because it got annoying having to carry the bottle.) 

For the first part of the run, I felt ok.  I kept thinking that I was going to have GI issues, but they held off.  Then, around mile 13, I started cramping, and I had to make a pit stop.  But, it gave me a chance to refill my water bottles.  I drank mostly water, with only one small water bottle with some Nuun in it.  I am still struggling with getting in any sort of electrolytes while I run.  Even the Nuun today had to be consumed in very small quantities so that it wouldn’t upset my stomach.  And I fueled with some Honey Stinger Waffles, Sports Beans and Trader Joes snickerdoodles.  None of those are packed with electrolytes.  When I got done, I was covered in white, powdery salt on my neck and face.  Not good.

I was surprised how long I felt good during this run.  It wasn’t until the last 3-ish miles that I started to get fatigued.  I kept telling myself during different parts of the run, “10 miles in and I still feel good,” “14 miles in and I still feel good,” “17 miles in and I still feel good.”  Toward the end, I wasn’t feeling that great anymore.  But, I tried not to let my pace fall off too badly.  And, if I had to, I think I could have pulled out the last 4+ miles to finish a marathon.  That is a pretty good feeling.

During the training for my first marathon, the 22 mile training run was not as enjoyable…of course, I was pregnant.  I have to keep reminding myself of that fact.

Anyway, here are the stats from today:

I’m am seriously excited about running 22 miles in 3:43!  And even better…check out how many sub-10 minute miles I ran in the second half!  When I first started training for this marathon, I was hoping to find a way to finish in 4:45.  Do I dare let myself hope for a 4:30?  I have to remember that I turned my Garmin off during my bathroom break, and when I stopped to refill my water bottles.  I won’t have that luxury during the race.  (my last 22 miler…for my first marathon…4:08:26.  I ran this one at a pace that was 1:09 faster PER MILE)

I’m also excited that I finished my 22 mile training run at a faster pace than my recent 18 miler.  (10:09 today vs. 10:25 then.  The Gymboss works, folks!)

I love the pace graph (top), because it clearly shows that I ran the second half faster than the first half. 

I ended up buying my own Gymboss.  After the success I had the last two long runs (with a borrowed one), I figured that I definitely needed my own.  It should be here by the end of next week.  I think I’ll put it to use on my next two long-ish runs.  I have a 16 and 12 (I think?) coming up as part of my taper.

Does anyone else spend a good portion of their long runs thinking about what they are going to eat when they get home?  I did today.  I was really looking forward to making a smoothie.  I haven’t made one in a really long time and just thinking about it during the run was enough to make me drool.  I got out the blender within minutes of walking through the door and threw in some spinach, raspberries, banana, half a peach, some yogurt and some almond milk.  It was delicious.  Totally hit the spot.

Well, that is the long-run report for this week.  Time to get back to doing school work.

How was your run today?


2 thoughts on “22 miles is a long way to run

  1. I always spend a large portion of my long runs thinking about what I am going to eat. It gives me something nice to think about.

  2. Pingback: September update « (G)O'Donnell

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