Long run actuals so far for this build-up (planned in parenthesis):
11.5 (10), 8.9 (12), 15.5 (14), 7.4 (6), 16.2 (16).
16.2 in 2:23:30, 8:51 ave. The Runner’s World SmartCoach schedule calls for a 8:33 pace, but it also plans for me to run a 3:17 for the marathon, which probably won’t happen. It assumes race pace is 7:31, and 8:33 is about a minute slower. I don’t try to hit the recommended goal times because I try to go with what my body thinks it’s safe to do while giving a good effort, naturally. If I think 3:30 is reasonable for my finish time, then MP is 8:01, and I should be going at 9:00ish for my LRs right now, assuming 1 min is right. So maybe I went too fast, but I wasn’t really pushing the pace or anything, and I was pretty much even the whole time, not fading at the end. I finished feeling pretty good.
My dad joins me for runs on his bike when he can. The thought of doing 7ish laps around our neighborhood for 16 mi wasn’t that appealing, so we went to a nearby subdivision instead, one that’s by the track I used over Thanksgiving break. I had thought about doing a run there, so it was worth exploring.
We parked at Publix and headed out. They had plenty of grass on the sides of the road, compared to the smaller strips of even yet somewhat cambered grass that I have at my subdivision. It was great. It was in the morning, so we had shade about 60% of the time. I had a whole wheat banana chocolate chip pancake, milk, and lots of green tea before the run, so even though my dad carried my Nalgene with him as we went, I didn’t need to drink the entire time. I wouldn’t have minded water towards the end, but I wasn’t uncomfortable.
The main road of the subdivision is long. I didn’t know how long, so I just kept following it. It ended up being like 5 mi long or something, with lots of smaller subdivisions branching off of it. We did a detour into one branch with the clubhouse and some apartments. After we hit the 5mi mark, we had gone through two big subdivisions, and we were at a highway. We decided to cross it and continue to a third subdivision. There, we went by the houses more. My parents were used to looking at houses on the market there, so my dad knew his way around.
We turned around after about 7.5 miles, which was early, so even if we made it back to Publix, without some extra detours of about 2 mi, I wouldn’t make the 16 mark. I got hungry at about 7 mi, and I had a 100-Cal mini Clif bar. I’m more into solid foods these days – it’s less messy than Gels when it comes to stashing the trash in your pockets, and it sticks less to your teeth and isn’t as excessively sweet as Chomps/Gummies. For races, I may still go with Gels since certain flavors give a caffeine boost, but we’ll see.
I wore a tech shirt, the one from the Camp Croft Half Marathon, the whole time, since it was windy and chilly enough, ranging from 40-43-50 degrees over the course of the run. I also had my handy dandy Adidas visor and Oakleys. The shades were a splurge that I justified by the fact that my old New Balance ones were great and cheap if you could get them at TJMaxx, but they’d break sometimes. Eyes are important, anyway.
When I got close to Publix, I made up the gap by circling the different fields at the recreation complex…. Soccer, football, baseball, track x 3, pond… eventually racked up enough that I could move on. I made it with 0.2 mi to spare. I did roll my left ankle (not the right this time) while at the complex. I think I normally roll my right one. It was a little slower to bounce back to normal during the run, but I could still run it off before the end of the run.
The first part of the run went by more slowly than the last half, where you knew you just had to go back. Especially on a new course, time is stretched because there’s so much to take in per step. On the way back, you know it already, and it flies by. The last 2 mi circling around did take a while though. Maybe because it was somewhat exploratory and meandering, and maybe because it was towards the end of the long run, and I was anticipating the end.
The next day, I did a strength session. I had to work that day, despite the fact that it’s my vacation. Boo. Same with the next day. My legs were still a bit in recovery mode 2 days after the run, but by night time, I felt like I could’ve gone for a run if I wanted to.