After my first 8 mile run I finally felt like I could do this marathon thing. I take it back. Good grief running is hard! On Christmas Eve morning I went 10.46 miles with my brother and I wanted to die. My pace was horrible (13 minute something a mile avg pace) but to make myself feel better I remind myself that’s including the time I had to stop to use a portapotty (awful), time we took to stop and shake rocks out of our shoe, and 2 miles of it was sucky mud. Sucky meaning suck your shoe off as you run through it, although I’ll give it the other meaning too. It was so hard and my legs got burned out faster than I would have liked and when we finished with the sucky mud we still had 5 miles to go. That’s what I get for planning a route that included a lap around Contra Loma reservoir after 3 days of rain. Actually, my original route had 2 laps around the reservoir, but we nixed that idea once we hit the mud and used my brother’s phone that had a handy ap that was keeping track of where and how far and fast (or slow) we were running to complete the 10 miles a different way.
This Monday I went 8 miles and felt pretty good until the last few miles it got hard, but not nearly as hard as the 10 miles were the previous week and I kept with my just under 12 minute average mile pace. I went at 0530 in the cold dark because I was going to be leaving to spend the day in SF with my best buddies that morning. We took BART into the city and walked everywhere we went- my legs and feet were so tired at the end of the day! The next day (new years day) I had to do a 3 mile run. My right knee was hurting, my legs were sore, I wasn’t watching my diet as carefully with it being new years eve the night before so my stomach wasn’t feeling so great with the cheese cake and snacks I had that night, I was still super tired, everything in my body seemed to hurt, my endorphins never kicked in and those 3 miles were the hardest 3 miles I’ve ever run since starting this thing. I thought I was the biggest idiot for agreeing to this. I was sucking wind and wishing I was back on the couch as soon as I started…and I started DOWNHILL. Hopefully tomorrow’s 4 ¼ mile run will be more enjoyable. My legs are still tired but not as sore as they were yesterday. Today was a rest day and I haven’t even been doing my strength training on my off days the last 2 weeks. I’ve been so tired! I bought some iron supplements today. I don’t plan to take them every day, but I think taking them maybe at least once a week as well as a few other days at certain times will help with some things.
This coming Monday I get to go 12 miles and I’m freaking out remembering how hard 10 miles was. I couldn't imagine going one step further than I did. On our 10 mile run on Christmas eve we had a water fountain we stopped at on our route not quite half way through and I still haven't run with water or food. I got a hydration pack to wear on my back for Christmas, so I think it’s time to see how that feels running. I bought a couple Power Bar brand activity energy gels (non caffeinated, 110 calories, vanilla flavored with some potassium, sodium and carbohydrates in it- they sound like a condensed gatorade). They recommend one every 45-60 minutes of activity along with water. I plan to use one after about half way through my run on Monday and I’ll see how I feel with it. If I like it I’ll keep with them since they seem like the easiest thing to consume on a run. They had bars, jelly beans and gummy blocks, but I figured I didn’t want to have to chew forever to get something down. A lot of them also had caffeine in them, which I’m too afraid to even try. I’m hoping that these gels will help keep me from feeling so awful towards the end of my long runs. My legs get to the point where they just don’t want to go and when I do slow to a walk they hurt so bad for a few steps until they loosen up and adjust to the walking pace. The beginning of my long runs are always pretty good. The ends are always pretty awful. Mondays aren’t exactly my favorite anymore.
I’m surprised at how well my feet have been doing. Still no blisters. They don’t hurt as much as they did when I first started, and they hurt even less after my last 8 mile run than they did after my first 8 mile run. After my 10 mile run I had a sharp pain whenever I stepped on my left heel just right that lasted a few days and worried me at first, but eventually faded away after about a week. I didn’t do anything special for it and still ran every day I was supposed to. I think it was just some bruised tissue in there.