I woke up this am rather frazzled. We went out pretty late last night, I had a lamb dish for dinner (I never eat lamb, but we had dinner at friends' house....it was delicious!), and my mom's dog started barking at 6:00am. I was unable to find one of my water bottles (Chris would say my running gear tends to be all over the house, I tend to agree, but of course not to him...). Next, to top all of this off, my Garmin, my faithful Garmin would not power up. My husband would not understand why this would make me want to scream, but he is not a runner. He does not understand how the Garmin keeps me in line, tells me when to pick up the pace and when to slow down, and gives me the security and peace of mind that I am where I should be in terms of pace and distance. ...
I had to meet Sue S at 8:00am, so had no time for pity parties. Sue has a Garmin, so that made me feel better. I figured, might as well bag this as "preparation just in case something is going to happen with the Garmin during the race" (OMG!!!!). We had a 20 miler today, and my plan was to go longer. I am not sure whether there is a physical benefit to running more than 20 miles for a marathon, but I know that there is a psychological one, for me. We started pretty fast, 8:30 for the first 4-5 miles, and slowed down a bit thereafter. We went the usual route, though the plan is to go on the course for the last 3 20 milers. We added extra hills and both felt great. Our pace slowed a bit, but overall I felt strong. We practiced some downhills and let me tell you, those are much tougher on the legs than the uphills. After about 5-6 miles of hills, Sue S was done with her 18 miles, handed me her Garmin (oh, the Garmin, such security), and I was on my way. Average pace for the 18 miles was 9:12. Pretty good, 8 seconds better than what we were supposed to run today.
After Sue left, I decided to pick up the pace. This was probably my anxiety, and not having the confidence that I am going to be able to run 26.2 @ 8:35 in April. ..It hurt. I pushed. It actually got easier. I am not sure why, I think I just got into a groove, played a couple of songs in my head, played some mental tricks. Pretty soon I was at 9:04 average and 23 miles total. I felt good, strong. I could have kept going. Easily. I mean, I was in pain, my legs were lead, but 3 more miles...for sure. But I stopped, of course. I walked the last .5 mile home, doing lunges, and calculating the pace of my last 5 miles in my head, 8:32! So now, 1/2 a chicken and a bagel later, I feel so happy, and so confident that I might be able to run a pretty strong marathon this April. Now, if I could only find a way not to have these hideous, humongous blisters after every long run (5 of them, every week, same spots)...oh well, I can still hide my toes in my winter boots for a while:)
Building a clock
8 months ago