Friday, May 27, 2011

TWENTY miles, I ran twenty miles!!

OMG! I ran 20 miles.

I needed to run 20 miles.

I was dreading running 20 miles.

I didn't really need to run 20 - Coach Lesley told me it would suffice for me to do 16 or 18 and more important that I have a good run than a bad one with a lot of miles.  I entertained doing less more than once.

But I needed to do 20, to just mentally *know* I could.  In my heart I feel that if I can run 20 I can do 26.2 - it was an important number to hit for my mental preparedness and a huge milestone in the face of all the bumps in my training I've hit along the way.

But I will not lie. I was dreading it.

My 16 miles and 18 mile long runs hurt. A lot. And they weren't very encouraging that I could actually pull off much more. I also dreaded it because as much as I like to run, running for 3-4 hours just doesn't give me a thrill. I mean I get bored watching my favorite band in concert after 2 hours or so, so ya know. The prospect of running for a million hours… Well. That's just tough to get amped for.

But be that as it may, I sucked it up and headed out for the 20.

I did things way different this time. I decided that I would do my own "Galloway" experiment with walking and running. Since I'm not aiming for any sort of time on this thing - my big goal is just to finish,  I would see if that would do me any better. I also purposely slowed my run waaaay down.

What a huge difference.

I will not say it was easy but even at 20 miles the "wall" never came. In my last two runs I hit walls around 13 - 14 miles and thought I was gonna die.

The first 13 I walked for a tenth of a mile at the end of every mile - it actually made things enjoyable. I walked, hydrated, popped a jelly bean and let go of any sort of "time" deadline. It really kept me fresh. Past 15 I walked much, much more and that was more because of stomach cramps than leg issues. Again, I was OK with walking as I needed to. I didn't berate myself - I know that for me and where I am at with training, I'm going to be walking a lot those latter miles so I might as well embrace it.

Sure I will be slow, there will be no record breaking time, no BQ'ing that's for sure :D but I will be a marathoner and I think this approach will not only allow me to finish but keep me injury free and make the experience a good one!!!

Now, hopefully I'll have the discipline on game day to keep my roll slow and stick to the plan!! ;)

20 miles! No matter what happens from this day forward, no one can take that away from me and I'm soooo happy about it.

XO
Jen
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