Again! I ran farther than I ever have in my life. Farther than I ever imagined I would have run. Here’s how it went down:
I prefer to run in the mornings because I perform better and to avoid all of the urban traffic. However, when I woke up at 7 am and saw that the temperature said 32 degrees, I said NOPE and went back to sleep. I know I’ll have to run in the 30’s eventually, but I’ll delay that as long as possible. I woke up a little later and even went to the farmer’s market first. I ate a larger breakfast than normal because I was starting late and because I planned to eat as little as possible during the run. When I woke up I had a cup of rice pudding with chia seeds, then right before the run I ate a huge scone.
I hit the road at 11:30, and by then it was 45 degrees. I somehow got really lucky and didn’t have to wait for any traffic crossings for the first 5 miles. The run was uneventful until the middle of mile 9, when I suddenly felt hungry. Up until that point, the only calories I ate during the run was 4 oz of Powerade. At mile 10 I ate one cinnamon bite, then a rice ball a half mile later. I was starting to fade so I put my headphones on. I definitely felt a mental boost after eating. At mile 13 I really felt like I was struggling, which was annoying because I knew I should be able to run 13 miles with no problem. My feet were hurting, and every time I stopped it was harder and harder to keep going. I even felt hungry again. I chugged the remaining 4 oz of Powerade told myself I would charge through to the end without any more food. In fact, I spent all of the last two miles thinking about what I was going to eat afterwards. Miles 15 and 16 were extremely slow (14:56 per mile! ouch) but I was able to kick it into gear and finish the final mile quickly.
Literally a minute after I stopped running, American Express was calling me to tell me that someone was charging hundreds of dollars to FTD (the florist) on my card, and it wasn’t me. I figured I’d deal with it during my cooldown to distract from my pain and fatigue. I was still on the phone when I got home which was annoying because it was getting in the way of my post-run eating and drinking. Once that was squared away, I ate another cup of rice pudding, chugged 16 oz of Nuun, and then ate a half can of turkey chili. You see, I had to eat that canned chili because I didn’t have anything else that was salty. Plus it was in our “emergency storm food” stash, and it’s good rotate the food so it doesn’t expire right? The chili was not even good. Not nearly as good as the chorizo egg burrito I had after my 15 miler. I think I might need to make the burrito a regular thing.
Calories eaten during the run:
8 oz of Powerade – 55 Cal?
cinnamon roll bite – 100 Cal
rice ball – 75
Total: 230. That’s less than what I’ve eaten during a half marathon. I felt tired but not weak. I also didn’t feel crazy or shaky at the end of the run. I think the less-is-more approach is going be okay for me if I keep training with it. I also weighed myself before and after the run just to gauge whether I drank enough. I was only a half pound lighter, which I think is in the safe range.
As for my speed, I made my overall target pace but my mile splits were wildly uneven – ranging from 11:40 to 14:56. I think the reason I struggled so much at the end was because some of my early miles were too fast. If I don’t have a Garmin by my next long run, I’ll go back to letting the voice feedback on my app guide me so that I run even (or negative) miles.
I ordered compression socks two weeks ago thinking they’d be here in time for my long run. They are still not here and I’m feeling crazy enough that I’m considering going to the store to buy some right now. Can you think of anything else I should do to recover?
Wow. I can’t believe I did 17 miles. I’m not as high on life after this one like I was two weeks ago, but looking at the big picture gets me excited. Even though January is still two months away, I feel like I am sooo close to the end of my training! Just two more long runs; SIX MORE MILES and then I will almost be a marathoner. By the way, I’ve read three peoples’ NYC Marathon recaps where they crossed the finish line and fell apart into tears due to pain, exhaustion, confusion, just general fatigue. Now I’m freaked out that it’s going to happen to me.