If you’ve trained for a race over a long period of time you have probably reached the point in training where you ask, “am I there yet?” Training for a marathon is a journey. You aren’t going to get there quickly; rather it’s a physical and mental battle of patience and perseverance. I have been asking myself am I ready to run this race. After today I believe I am, but boy have I been running out of steam. This training has been tougher on me than I thought and despite stepping away from the 3:30 marathon plan I was following at one point, I still feel good about where I have landed. No matter the end result, I will accomplish something.
So today marked the completion of my 20 mile training run, the longest run I plan to do before the race. Yesterday, I was not feeling like myself so I was a little nervous about heading out today. But I felt decent when waking up so it was time to face this monstrosity of a distance.
It was a 3-hour journey for sure–I hit pavement a little after 9 am. It was a brisk morning that was great for running. I headed along one of the trails in Virginia towards DC, then out and about Haines Point, the National Mall (there were a LOT of tourists out today) and along some city blocks. I loaded my iPod up the night before with some new tunes and Podcasts which I found surprisingly enjoyable on the run. I am not much of a Podcast kind of girl but now may be changed–there is so much out there to learn and now I can do that while I run. I especially liked listening to the Jillian Michaels show–got some tips on the value of protein in the diet (she is a strong proponent of whey–it has more of the essentials than other protein powder sources–and animal protein which is a more complete protein than plant-based proteins).
I was not in the mood today to run along the same trail out and back so I opted to metro home after the run. Nothing too eventful besides dodging tourists along the Mall and I almost ran over a sleeping homeless man along one of the streets (I really hope he was sleeping!).
Overall, I feel good and am proud of finishing this long run by myself. I know that six more miles should be smooth sailing.
Earlier this week I was in Maine for work. That morning I hit the gym to do some weights and a 3-mile run on the treadmill. When I landed in Portland later that afternoon it was such a pleasant evening that I decided to go for another jog (I needed to get my mileage count a little higher). The hotel front desk pointed me to a trail that was a few blocks away that ran along the water. It was a great dusk run. The water was to my right and an old railroad line to my left. I passed a sailing class taking in the last rays of daylight, a few other runners and bikers and people who probably just got off work taking their dogs for a beachside swim. I could sense in the air that these Mainers (or Maniacs as the internet tells me they call themselves) were reveling in the unseasonably warm weather knowing that Jack Frost would be knocking on their windows soon enough. I snapped a few photos along the way. I really did luck out as the next day it rained all day and the temperature dropped a good 10 degrees. It was a nice way to end the afternoon and start my trip on the right foot.
Week 12 Recap (10/16-10/23): 3 days of running totalling 37 miles (including a 20 mile long run at 3:08:11 and a 10 mile run at 1:32), 1 cross training day (weights) and 100 push ups