14 miles today. I took about 17 oz of water in my hydration pack and 2 energy gels in my pocket. My feet hurt the worst towards the end (specifically my left foot) and in my last few miles my legs were just so dang tired. I had to walk every time I got to a hill and sometimes even on a flat stretch. About half of my run is ascending. I make loops, so I alternate going up for a while and going down for a while (those are my favorite stretches!) with smaller hills in between.
My last few miles I kept thinking to myself 14 miles is too hard, just too hard. I was happy to finish. It took me 2 hours 53 minutes 45 seconds. It's weird to think I was out moving for nearly the length of time I go to church for. So long! Compared to my 12 and a quarter mile run 2 weeks ago, my average pace was actually a touch better today, which surprised me. On my last “lap” going up my final ginormo hill I changed my goal time in my head to less than 4 hours (my "I'd be happy if" goal was 3 hours or less, but my ultimate goal was 2 hours and 48 minutes), thinking I was walking a whole lot more than I do on my shorter runs at certain parts of my route that would take down my average pace. If my goal time was 4 hours then I could still be happy with my finish time and not feel guilty about not being able to run at that point and for a while I was thinking there was no way I could run any more and it very well may have taken me an hour to finish my last mile. The hills kill me. I guess I could also figure I had 20 seconds pause when a couple of pedestrians stopped me to tell me about a mountain lion sighting in the area and to keep my kids and animals inside...but really I was kind of relieved for the break.
If I could change one thing about today I probably would have brought more water. I ran out in my last 4 miles and I really wanted it. One thing about the hydration pack is you can’t see how much is left to portion it out. The weather was sunny and warm for January. I was afraid I was going to get sunburned, but I’m not too red. My back under my hydration pack felt like I just dumped the water from the pack right on my shirt. I had dried salt all over my face, and I was sad I didn’t have any more water! There was a time when I seriously considered sitting down on the side of the road, the idea was so nice and I longed for my couch! I didn’t. I kept going and tried not to cry. Ha. It sure feels nice to be sitting now though, all clean and in fuzzy socks. I know I’ve mentioned it before but running does increase my gratitude for things like, food, sitting, water, breathing, and cars.