Nine before nine
Despite my desire to remain in bed while the rest of the world continued to enjoy their slumber, including my husband who was sawing some serious logs, I was up with my alarm at 5am for my long, nine mile run. I’m always thankful that I remember to pack everything that I think I will need the night before because no matter how hard I try to get out of the house in a reasonable amount of time it’s always at least 10 minutes later than I want to.
I had to get really creative with my gels because I seem to have lost my little fuel belt pouch last Saturday after my awful eight mile run, so I safety pinned one to my Camelbak strap and the other to my pants. Hey, it worked! I also decided to take along a wet wash cloth to help with the sweat that I knew would be out of control in our crazy heat wave (it was 80 degrees at 5:30 this am!) that we’ve been having the last few days. I ate a honey graham Cliff Z bar after I stretched and I was off.
Since it was still pretty dark out when I left at 5:30am I decided to do a lap around my neighborhood before heading out and going down another road before heading to my usual running spot. At mile 3 I took my first gel, a razz flavored by Cliff, and realized why I don’t usually buy Cliff brand – yuck! I was nearly 4 miles into the run before I hit the neighborhood that I usually run in and I was close to five miles when I realized that I seriously had to go to the bathroom! Luckily the neighborhood has a clubhouse so I snuck in behind an older gentleman, who was getting ready to start a hot and humid morning out golfing, and made my way to the restrooms. By this point I was so sweaty that I was a little worried that I wasn’t going to be able to get my pants back on because I was so soaked it was like I had gone swimming in my clothes! Yuck!
Before I knew it I was finishing up mile 5 and was getting into mile 6 and I was still feeling pretty good! This run was a lot different than last week because I used a lot more of positive self-talk to get me through. I kept telling myself “the more you run, the faster you’ll be done” and set small goals like “run to this pole” and “now to that sign” and actually said “good job!” when I passed each one. A bit much yes, I realize, but it really helped since a lot of my running long distances is getting past the mental part that wants to hold me back and say “you can’t do this”.
At mile 6 I took my second gel, mocha by Cliff with a shot of caffeine, which was gross again but it did the trick because I was able to continue on strong through to the end. I noticed during this run that I only had to “walk through” a run three times, which is really good for me, and showed me that I was pushing myself but not so hard that I would be struggling at the end (which happens quite often!).
When I got home I was super sore so I decided to take a mini-ice bath, which was really just some cold water with a decently sized bowl of ice. When I took my shoes and socks off I realized that I have a few blisters where my big toe must rub on the second toe – I even have a blister inside of the blister on my left foot! Not so fun. I’m guessing that I’ll need to tape my toes so that they don’t blister on my next long run. At this point it’s all about discovering what works and what doesn’t on the long runs so I can minimize the things that will go wrong when I run the marathon.