Each week I enter a long run as if I am going into battle.
Usually the long run wins the battle and I feel like crap.
But from my little knowledge of history, I’ve been told it is all about the outcome of the war.
Although the figurative war will not be for a couple weeks for San Francisco Half Marathon, I feel that I finally won a battle and have gathered some momentum.
I set off on Sunday for my longest run in about 2 years. 14 miles. I finished them at my target pace for a long run – 10:15 min/mile (dailymile typo before) which is about 30 seconds slower than what I am aiming to do.
During previous half marathon training, I never pushed this distance. This time I am experimenting with having a 14 and 15 miler in my training, along with a few 13s – all from Run Less, Run Faster’s Half Marathon training plan.
I chose a relatively flat course and decided to change it up. Instead of going along my normal stretch of the Iron Horse Trail, I chose the southern route and heading in the direction of Dublin. Although I knew I was probably in for a less than exciting route, it was all new to me. At first I was only going to do a few miles out and back, then finish in my usual direction, but I was feeling great so I kept with it. What started as only going out 2 miles, turned to 4, then 5, and then I thought “might as well go to 7.”
My only gripe was that there wasn’t a water fountain that I saw along the route, but I saw a park and used it as a fueling break as I searched and succeeded in finding a fountain. I brought my pack of cytomax and refueled my drink at around 9 miles. I took two gu’s and chomps throughout the run and was really proud of my constant reminder to fuel.
My point of detailing out my run is to say that not until mile 11-12 did I actually start feeling fatigued, like I wanted it to end.
I finally enjoyed a long run.
I was having SUCH a good time, that I turned off my garmin at the turn around and just went by feel. I did not want to get frantic about where I should be at, but just revel in the fact that my body was working with me.
When I got home, I decided to thank my body’s hard work by taking an ice bath – my FIRST ever ice bath.
My roommate helped me. I couldn’t muster the strength.
A couple of observations from my week:
1. Before and after every run I rolled out my legs, taking a good 10 minutes each time.
2. I’ve been trying to push the pace on hard runs and laying off the pace on the other runs.
3. I chose a new route.
4. I was not stressing about getting back to finish grading/planning. School is done.
5. I am giving myself more running rest days.
Granted, today’s run later could suck incredibly and I am okay with that.
Funny thing that one good run can cancel out 10 bad runs.