Holy guacamole, Week 8 is over and I am officially halfway to the marathon! I began Week 8 with 4 goals: (1) Run outside as much as possible; (2) Run at least 50 miles; (3) Feel strong and steady during my 18 mile long run and finish fast; and (4) Eat more vegetables.
Who am I kidding, I heart vegetables. I nailed the first 2 goals. I ran 50 miles, 37 of which were run outside. As for goal #3, I felt mostly strong and steady during my 18 miler, but I did not finish fast (on purpose). Obviously I nailed goal #4 by I eating as many vegetables and cookies as cookie monster eats cookies.
Overall, Week 8 was a success. I will discuss the details in just a moment. You may be wondering why this posted is titled, “Rejection.” Over the course of the last few weeks, I was rejected by not one, but TWO marathons. I entered both the NYC marathon and Marine Corp marathon lotteries. While I did not expect to get into NYC, I had high hopes that I would be accepted into the MCM. FALSE. I was rejected from both
and I am having middle school dance flashbacks. Right now, I am leaning toward running the Maine Marathon in the Fall, but I have a lot of time to make my decision. Onto Week 8…
Monday – Spontaneous Rest Day
Tuesday – 12 hilly miles
Wednesday – 7 miles easy
Thursday – 5 miles easy (treadmill)
Friday – 8 miles easy/moderate (treadmill)
Saturday – 18 mile long run
Sunday – Rest
Total: 50 miles
Despite taking the previous Sunday off (as planned), I needed a second day of rest on Monday. Some days my body just says, “Nuh-uh, I will be spending the evening on the couch eating bon-bons thankyouverymuch.” To be honest, I am still experiencing the lingering effects of the worst. head. cold. of. all. time. The only reason I got any sleep this week was due to my new BFF Mr. Nasal Spray, who has since been banished to a dark corner of my house due to his highly addictive properties. Needless to say, I was raring to go by Tuesday.
Luckily, the weather on Tuesday was uncharacteristically nice, so I decided to head to the Berlin Pond area for some sunny outdoor miles. I did not intend on running 12 miles, but I felt good
and could not stop listening to Serial. Plus, after taking 2 days off in a row, I needed to get in some solid mileage. Surprisingly, because normally I feel like mushy peas after a longish/hilly run, I also felt good on Wednesday during my 7 miler. I did not feel good on Thursday, however. I know this because my planned 8-9 mile run turned into a 5 mile run with 2 bathroom stops. TMI? I think I have reached the beautiful point where I have transitioned to running outside and the treadmill is no longer my friend. Unfortunately, this meant that in order to reach my weekly mileage goal, I had to run at least 8 miles on Friday, the day before my long run. So the whole “take it super easy the day before my long run” plan went out the window. Ah well, not a huge deal.
Now for the long run. The good news is that I finished 18 miles. My pace was a bit slower than I would have liked, but only by about 15-30 seconds per mile. The first few miles were rough, but this is usually the case with long runs. Generally, my legs feel like crap for the first 2-3 miles of every run. [Side note: You know you are a crazy marathoner when you do not feel warmed-up until 2-3 miles into a run. I remember when 2-3 miles was a run.] It can be really tough to think about the fact that I have 18, 17, 16 etc. miles to go. For this reason, I try very hard to “stay in the mile I’m in.” Some days, this is easier said than done. On Saturday, I struggled mentally for all but a few miles of my run. It was cold and the wind seemed to be in my face no matter which direction I turned. Physically, my legs felt strong until the very end. My stomach cooperated, and the fact that I ran with water was HUGE.
Speaking of water, during my long run this week, I
lost my mind had a thought. My thoughts on running with water have evolved in a very similar way to my thoughts on hanging out with my parents. When I first started running long distances, I quickly realized that some sort of water carrying device was a necessity, especially during the warmer months. My first water carrying device purchase was a Nathan handheld water bottle. I quickly realized that I do not enjoy the feeling of carrying around a sloshing water bottle IN MY HAND when running. Furthermore, I suspected that my right arm was becoming stronger than my left arm due to the extra weight and I am all about arm strength equality. Lies. I really just hated the way it felt. My second water carrying device was a Fuel Belt. It looked something like this:
At this point in my fledgling running career, running with a water belt was COOL because it indicated that I was a serious runner. I ran so far that I required WATER. This period was akin to elementary school, a time when I was the envy of my friends if my mom showed up to help out in my classroom. However, just as prepubescence came to a grinding halt sometime around 6th grade, so did my fondness for my fuel belt. Suddenly, wearing my fuel belt was sooooo uncool. I think the uncoolness factor was exacerbated by the fact that in order to prevent bouncing, I had to wear my fuel belt
like Steve Urkel at my natural waist. In summary, I determined for unknown reasons that running with water was about as uncool as hanging out with your parents at age 13. Enter, the Rev 6:
At some point, I
grew up realized that running without water for long distances is not smart, so I began to gradually let my parents be in the same room as me experiment with “cool” hydration packs. I eventually settled on the Osprey Rev 6, which carries 1.5 liters of liquid in a bladder and contains many pockets for all sorts of running related goodies. I am not kidding when I say that the Rev 6 weighs practically nothing. Nonetheless, I only run with “Flash” (yes, I named my hydration pack) during long runs or when it’s especially hot outside. Because let’s face it, while I may enjoy my parents more at age 29 than I did at age 13, I can’t run the risk of being completely uncool.
In other news, I finally bit the bullet and purchased the Brooks PureCadence 4s.
Goals for next week*:
*Technically this week because I am posting this bad boy on a Monday. I am also writing this post under the influence of cold medicine, which may explain why I just compared running with water to puberty-related embarrassment.
- Run at least 52 miles
- Feel strong and steady on my 20 miler
- Eat less candy/chocolate
starting Tuesday because *whoops* I had brownies for lunch
- Develop a realistic plan for the Unplugged 1/2 marathon in 2 weeks
- Get my blood drawn and iron levels tested
That’s all folks!