Friday, October 8, 2010

The last long run

Happy Friday all, I am so happy for the weekend, but a quick recap of my last long run before the marathon.

So I will go ahead and put this out there and say I was a bit rebellious when I designed my training plan, I built in a 15 day taper not the normal 21 days that is recommended and that everyone else uses. While I have never run a marathon I have been an athlete long enough to know how my body recovers and how long it takes, and I knew 3 weeks would be waay too long for me. I had my last long run schedule for last night and it basically said 18-22 on the schedule, but I decided that 20 would be the magic number.

I will say that my goal for this run was pace miles. I have done several 20+ milers so far so I wasn't stressed about the distance, I wanted to see how long I could hold onto my goal pace, and how it left me feeling at the end. The verdict = not what I had hoped.

18 Miles- 2:50:20, 9:27 pace
Miles 1-8:   (9:43, 9:31, 9:26, 9:39, 9:23, 9:05, 9:17, 9:21)
Miles 9-12:   (9:38, 9:26, 9:22, 9:20)
Miles 13-18:  (9:33, 9:31, 9:29, 9:30, 9:31, 9:35)

So if you didn't know anything else you would actually think this was a super stellar run, and in hindsight it really was a strong solid run with really good times until the end when my body just shut down. I went into this run not well nourished and very dehydrated. I had not eaten much all day which is not great when you are planning an evening long run, and I had almost no water all day. Our water cooler was out at work, and I was so busy I never got a chance to slip out and get some, so I was uber dehydrated which was a major factor in the later miles. I knew both these things going into the run, and I knew it would hurt me, but I also knew it was now or never, and I wanted this last run.

I am honestly not that bummed that I had to stop at 18, I wish I had felt up to doing 20, but I didn't, and I am smart enough to know that pushing 2 more miles would have probably ended very very badly. I think if I had been better fueled I would have had at least 2 more pace miles in me, and that gives me enough confidence to feel ready for this race, and to do it at the pace I have trained for. Even as dead as I was I managed to hold my pace, and that is very reassuring. My drinking habits during this run showed me just how dehydrated I was, I had to keep looping back to get more water, and more water, I never seemed to have enough, but at least I can pinpoint my mistakes and move forward.

Another fun fact for you: Gu is VERY sticky! I was eating my first gu around mile 5.5 and running while eating it, and all of a sudden I felt something sticky on my leg...uhh yeah the gu had somehow overflowed and dripped onto my right inside knee, it was like glue, I could not get it off with water, and when I made my pitstop at mile 8 to refill my water I had to scrub it off with water and a towel. This probably has me the most nervous that it will happen during my race, and it would not be welcomed.

So it finally taper time!!!!! I have been looking forward to the taper mostly because it means that the race is super close which it is! I have read all the stories about taper paranoia and the random twinges, and I am mentally prepared for them, so hopefully you won't hear too much freaking out. Luckily I have plenty of things to get done during these 2 weeks so I shouldn't have too much extra time on my hands. I can't believe it's finally time to put this training cycle to bed, I can't believe I have been at this for 16 weeks, it went by SO fast!!!

Tons of luck to everyone racing this weekend: Chicago, Steamtown, and several others, I can't wait to see everyone's race recaps!!!!


  1. hizzah taper time! i think that, while the run was crappy at the end, it was still a great run because you now know what happens when you go into a long distance without being properly nourished or hydrated. a learning experience better known now than race day :)

  2. Congrats on taper!!! Thank you for the well wishes...

  3. Man you did great!! I am thinking stopping at 18 was smart since you were so dehydrated! The Gu on your leg sounds awwwful!!