Every other week I surprise myself with each new distance I go. I’m learning that we’re stronger than we know…it just takes a little (or rather a lot) of effort. I’m feeling pretty good right about now. Come May 4th I’m going to be so ready. Today was 18 miles. I no longer feel bad that it takes me nearly 13 minutes a mile on my long runs. They’re HARD miles! Half of it is going up and I’m wearing a water back pack. I think I’m allowed to be impressed with myself. My pace today was just about the same as my pace 2 weeks ago on my 16 mile run, but it was 3 seconds a mile better and I went two more miles. Progress.
I kind of love it when I stop for traffic and realize I don’t need the breathing break I used to love traffic for. I no longer appreciate waiting for cars to pass. I never thought I’d be able to jog and comfortably breathe. It’s a feeling of accomplishment for me- only now I have to get my feet and legs to feel just as good as my lungs. My heart’s doing pretty ok too. My resting rate is in the mid 40’s. I never think to take it when I’m on a run or even right after. Right now, 2 hours later it’s 70.
Today I took 5 energy gels, ate 3 of them and brought 48 oz of water. I didn’t drink it all. I was exhausted by the end and had to lean on the counter while I was making my food, but I still don’t feel as awful or have such a hard time finishing my run as I did with my first 10 mile run. My feet hurt and are tired, but I don’t have any new blisters.
As a side note, the raspberry flavored power bar brand energy gel is a lot better than the vanilla flavor, and also doesn’t have caffeine. I bought a case (carton? Pack?) of 24 online at amazon.com because it was cheaper than buying individual packets at sporting-goods stores. I only use them on Mondays for my long runs when I’m going to be out for more than a couple hours. My shorter runs vary between 3.4-5.6 miles (and next week will go up to 6 miles), and the only thing I bring on those runs is my house key tied to my shoe.
On my 5.65 mile run on Saturday I was able to complete the whole thing, ginormo hills and all with no walking. It was a good week for breakthroughs. I also feel like I should give credit where credit is due: before my feet hit the pavement before every single one of my runs and sometimes another one in the middle I say a prayer. I don't think I could make it without that help
I’m very satisfied with my progress. I’ve got about another two and half months until my marathon. Coming from a girl who couldn’t even make it once around a quarter mile track in high school without walking, I’m feeling pretty good about myself lately.