I had talked Melanie into running 11.8 of those miles with me, so I only had to do about 9 miles by myself. Piece of cake, right? Heh. Heh. Rigggghhhttt.
I got up early Saturday morning and got to the park just as the sun was rising. It was unbelievably gorgeous. I started the 6.4 loop (5.8+LL) backwards and was immediately happy with that decision as I was able to watch the sunrise as I battled up the reverse side of 9 mile hill. The weather was gorgeous, the leaves were all orange and yellow and as the sun bled through them it looked like the sky was glittering gold. Breathtaking. I flew through those initial 6.4 miles and headed to my car for a drink and to meet Melanie for the next segment of my run.
As I waited, I guzzled some gatorade, some diet coke (mmm.. caffeine), and I had half of a Barely Naked granola bar, which I'd never had before. Yes, my name is Amy, I'm training for my 8th marathon and I STILL make rookie mistakes... like.. eat something new in the middle of a long run.
Melanie and I got started and things were going fairly well. I felt decent initially and since Melanie and I hadn't seen each other in awhile, we had a lot to talk about. And as the run went on... I was extremely grateful that Melanie had a lot to talk about, because I started STRUGGLING.
Around mile 5.5/6ish I started feeling lazy. My legs felt heavy, I was starting to get thirsty (Yes, my name is Amy, I'm training for my 8th marathon and I consistently make the rookie mistake of forgetting to bring a drink along) and I had to stop for a quick walk break. As the run went on... the more walk breaks I had to institute. Luckily, Melanie was totally chill about it, and didn't call me out for being such a pansy.
Around mile 9, as if my brain, legs, and thirst wasn't enough, my stomach decided to up and revolt on me as well (a conspiracy of the body? I think so). Stupid granola bar. So, needless to say... we skipped the Luke Lea loop that time and I skipped out on the 2.5 trail. So, I ended up with 17.6. Which... I'm slightly disappointed in, but I realize... when your brain checks out on you... and your body and stomach follows suit, there's nothing you can really do it about it. So... I'm not worried. I am glad that I got a good 17.6 miles of the race course in. Granted, I felt like I wanted to die during the last 6 miles or so... But that should be good practice for me. Because, I'm sure, during the marathon I'll feel like I want to die for wayyyy more than just 6 miles.
I keep trying to remember that I did run the Country's Highest Road Marathon back in July... after running a marathon the previous day. And that bitch was HARD. Like... really, really hard. I remember finishing and immediately saying to Vandy-Montana "well, now I'm not worried about running the monkey." (I had just signed up for the monkey the day before). So, I KNOW I'll make it, but... I just don't want it to suck really hard. After Saturday's run... I have a feeling that it is going to suck really hard.
In other news, shout out to my running partner, Matt, who finished the Outerbanks Marathon this weekend in 4:00!!! (I hope this doesn't mean that you're ditching me for someone faster, now?)