I slept later than planned today (shocking, I know) and my run suffered because of my inability to obey the alarm. It has been unseasonably warm all month but today was ridiculous. Instead of getting up at 6:00am and getting out the door by 7:00, I slept past 7:30 and didn't get out the door until after 8:30. Oops. It didn't make a big difference in the actual temperature of my run, but it meant a lot more time in the sun and that's always draining. It did help that it was a little windy today. While running into the wind might have slowed the pace a little, it also helped keep me cool.
My list of gear is getting a little ridiculous too, but I suited up and prepared myself mentally for 3 hours of running. I had my Garmin GPS watch, my Road ID dogtags, my Amphipod water bottle filled with orange-flavored G1 pouches, and my new Amphipod arm band to hold my Flip camera. I might as well cover myself with sponsor decals like Nascar. It was hot enough today that I also took a bottle of water and stashed it on Central in Eureka so I could steal a drink later in my run.
I decided to mix up the course a little today to keep the terrain changing and to better simulate an actual marathon. I ran all over town and tried to capture some of the places I often talk about in my blog on video. Here's a sampling of what I saw today:
(The infamous Eureka trains - The fountain on the way to Kircher Park - Entering Rte 66 State Park - Running by the pond in Rte 66 - Running by the trees in Rte 66 - The hill on Central
- My 2nd encounter with Liz - Six Flags - The Days Inn hill)
I intentionally took the pace slower today than on my 20-miler two weeks ago. Back then, I wanted to flirt with The Wall by going out fast and seeing how long I could last. The problem was, I was pretty spent for the entire week after that run. So today was all about getting the mileage in and not worrying about the pace.
I also played with the camera a lot which meant occasional stops to record something without the annoying bouncing that I get when I record while running.
I ran to Route 66 and then did 4 laps around the park. That meant I left the park with 11 miles under my belt and 11 to go. At that point, I was feeling totally relaxed but not completely comfortable. I was getting hot and the sun was getting higher in the sky. It was going to be a long second half.
I ran back into 'downtown' Eureka and grabbed my hidden bottle of water. I drink a G1 pouch every 6 miles so I had already gone through two of the three pouches in my water bottle. I drank some of the regular water and then mixed the rest with the remaining G1 in my water bottle. It was all warm by then and didn't feel as refreshing going down, but I was definitely in need of the fluids so I wasn't complaining.
As I was getting ready to start the Allenton Loop, Liz came riding down Central on her bike. She was just getting started on a tough bike ride into the wind and over the hills of the Legends. She stopped to make sure everything was going okay and then we both set off toward Allenton. (She made better time on her bike.)
I ran the Allenton Loop back to the house and stopped for a quick bathroom break and a few swigs of cold Gatorade. I also dumped some ice into my watered down G1 before going back out for the last 5 miles.
By now, I was jogging more than running. I wanted to get all 22 miles in but I didn't want to strain myself so much that I couldn't be productive during my taper. So I tried to think of it as if I was just starting a slow 5-mile jog and hadn't already run 17 miles.
I ran back into downtown Eureka (passing Liz again on her way home) and ran the Old Town Eureka Loop with the City Hall extension. This meant I was running the most hills (and the biggest hills) in the last 3 miles of my run. That might not have been the best plan.
The Elks or Lions Club or some group like that (I was getting a little foggy at that point) was having a charity barbeque on Central and they were kind enough to give me some ice for my water bottle as I prepared to climb the hill on Central for the last mile-and-a-half home. The ice only lasted a half-mile before it melted but it was much appreciated for that half-mile!
I had to add one lap around the El Nopal parking lot to make it an even 22, but I got all of the miles in despite the heat. I'm hoping for temperatures about 30 degrees cooler on Race Day.
After a refreshing shower and some stretching, I was surprised by how good I felt. I definitely took the run slow today, but I still expected to be more tired, stiff, and sore. Just to be safe, I got out the foam roller and gave the old legs a good once-over.
"What doesn't kill you makes you stronger." I ran 22 miles on a warm day after a week of high mileage. Surely, I can handle 26.2 miles on a cool day after three weeks of recovery mileage... right?
Goal For The Day: Long Run.
Distance: 22.00 Miles.
Time: 2:45:08. 7:41 Avg. (7:20, 6:58, 7:01, 7:07, 6:55, 7:01, 7:06, 7:08, 7:15, 7:13, 7:06, 7:15, 7:23, 7:17, 9:45, 7:27, 8:07, 8:15, 8:11, 8:45, 9:47, 4:36*).
Route: To Rte 66/4 Laps/Allenton Loop/Old Town Eureka Loop w/ Hunters Run and City Hall Extension.
Conditions: 68 degrees at the start/80 degrees at the finish. 8:45am.
Notes: I was stopping my watch when I stopped to shoot video. At one point, I got mixed up with starting and stopping my watch and starting and stopping the video camera. I realized I left my watch running while I stood still and stopped it while I ran a half-mile. So my time isn't completely accurate but I made sure I ran the whole distance. If anything, I might have run a little extra. That's why my times look a little off and I only have a half-mile time for my last mile. My watch only showed 21.5 miles because it was turned off for half a mile. What a mess!
Daily Miles: 22.00 Miles.
Run - 480.51 Miles.
Bike - 144.45 Miles.
Swim - 12,050+ meters.