Demoralizing 20 mile run + Missing a half marathon PR by less than a minute because I'm dumb = Amy... down in the dumps.
That's how I was feeling last week... defeated, fatigued... like someone had just let the air out of my 3:59 marathon balloon. So, to say I was going into the weekend a little nervous is a bit of an understatement.
Friday, I focused on fueling up... I stayed far, far away from my arch nemesis: FIBER and loaded up on pizza at lunch and made myself a healthy dinner of fish and veggies and a huge ass baked potato. I also avoided caffeine after 3pm (not an easy thing for a diet coke fiend).
The plan for Saturday morning was this: I would run down to Vandy-Montana's place and meet him at 6:15am. We would then run to the start of the training run. (I mean... how hardcore is that??? Running TO the actual 20 mile training run?? Yeah... we rock like that) and then instead of running all the way back to the park to finish the run, we'd just run home, we figured it would all even out by the end and we'd have our 20 miles no problem.
So, I went to bed early (seriously, it was like 8:30) and set two alarms. I set my cell phone alarm for 3:00am and my regular alarm for 5:00am. I placed a half bagel on my nightstand along with some water. When the first alarm went off at 3:00am. I didn't even turn my light on... I reached over to my nightstand grabbed the bagel and scarfed it down as quickly as I could while being half asleep. I then rolled over and went back to sleep for 2 hours. (Thankfully, I didn't choke and die on the bagel... I realize now, that I should probably at least sit up to eat the bagel, or bring a chair into my bedroom so I can perform the Heimlich on myself, if need be).
Once I was up at 5. I didn't eat anything. But I did decide to pack my up my fuel belt and use it for this training run. Mainly... because the shot blox are pretty cumbersome. I also decided to carry my ipod with me, just in case Vandy-Montana had to leave me behind again.
I headed out the door and met up with Vandy-Montana at 6:15. It was nice to get to the park and stand around and wait for the official training run to begin and already be warmed up. I wasn't freezing my ass off in shorts waiting around.
The run was good... the first 13.1 miles was the entire Country Music Half Marathon route (which... FYI CMMer's... the route has been changed. Be prepared for additional hills at the beginning. Although... bonus... no more running around the pond at Shelby Bottoms at the end of the marathon!). I used my first shot blox around mile 8. I got my hands on the cola flavor first, so I ended up trying it. I ate 3 of the blox before I got to the water station and just did a quick swish at the water station (good idea, Spike). I found the cola flavor to be pleasant enough... and once I realized that I didn't really have to chew all that hard (intially I was like... ummm.. I can't chew and run at the same time), that they just kind of dissolve into your mouth, I was fine with it. I didn't really notice any sort of energy boost after that, but whatever... hopefully it was still providing my body with stuff that I needed.
I did have a little mini-wall around mile 12 or so. There were some minor inclines around downtown that I just felt like were the end of the world. But I survived... even with running around Titans Stadium for the 100 zillionth time this training period. I used the shot blox again at mile 13ish. And I only got two down before I got to the water station, so I just took the two.
Mile 14 was a little a rough, mentally for me... but when I realized we were actually running faster at that point than we had been previously... that perked me up and I mentally attributed it to the shot blox. Although... it was probably also due to the fact that I just wanted to get home.
From about mile 12 onward... I could have easily gone to the bathroom. I mean, I felt the need... but it wasn't the overwhelming... oh my god I'm going to shit my shorts if I don't find a bathroom... So, that's a mini-victory for me. Maybe next time I won't feel the need at all. I mean... I just can't imagine how much easier the last miles of my training runs would be if I didn't have to exert so much thought into my stomach.
All-in-all it was a good training run. I'm going to stick with the shot blox (and figure out an easy way to carry them for the marathon) and I think the waking up wayyy early and eating is better for me than eating just an hour and half or so before the run.
2 20 milers down and one to go.
I'm back, baby!!