Monday, October 08, 2012
It turned out that the longest training run before my upcoming marathon came on a day we would be visiting my daughter and the grandkids. We take our RV, park on her covered RV pad and sleep there during our visits. I wasn't too eager to do my run there, because it's hilly where she lives.
The morning of my run, all my 'stuff' had been laid out the night before, so I was ready fairly quickly once I woke up at 5:30 or so. It was foggy, 100 percent humidity and 72 degrees at 6 AM when I started out. I got out alright, but developed a problem with my Timex GPS watch at mile 1:29. It started beeping and there was a message that the memory was full. So I had to delete some previous runs, and restart the watch. In the dark. On the side of a rural road adjacent to an orange grove
Got that done, but was frustrated that I already lost time messing with the watch. I kind of wanted to get an idea of how long it would take to run 22 miles in relatively warm weather. I forgot to look at the time before I restarted the run, but I guess it was around 16 minutes, since I started slowly. So, I never got an exact run time.
I went out for a mile and a half, turned around and came back to the lake that I usually run around. It's 2 1/4 miles one way on the lake running track, but I decided to continue and go off track and return to my starting point, all the way around the lake. That was just about 3.33 miles one way. I did a couple of these, then backtracked on the running path, just trying to change up to not be so bored.
During the run, around mile 11 or so, I saw my daughters BF standing on the side of the road, next to his car. He had a cold bottle of water, and was checking up on me. That was cool. I stopped for a bit, ate another fig newton and had a sip or two of the cold water. It was getting warm already, the cold water was good. Better than the warm water I had been drinking from the fountains placed around the running/walking track on the lake.
Being a Saturday morning, there were other runners and walkers out there. Lots of them. When I started out in the dark, I was the sole runner for what seemed like a long time. Then they came, in droves. Mostly all cheerful smiling faces. Old guys walking and talking. Young runners flying by in each direction. Women with kids in strollers. Moms and daughters. I like seeing other runners, makes it more fun.
So, I continue to run, it gets warmer and eventually, I am the only runner out there again. Wow, this is a long run. No runners, some runners, lots of runners, the herd thins out. Now they've all gone home, because it is too hot to run. But, I continue. And man, it feels like a hundred degrees out. I'm really wearing down. And there is daughters BF, Tom, again.
More water, and best of all, encouragement. He took my picture, told me I was looking good. And being the nice guy he is, asks me if I want to sit down for a while. I smile graciously and said, "Naw, I think I better keep going, but thanks anyway". I drink some of his cold water, and am silently grateful that my daughter chose such a nice guy for a boyfriend. He asked how I was doing and I checked my watch, told him I had about 5 more miles to go.
I run some more. Now I have about 2 miles to go to make 22 miles, I head back to the RV. I'd underestimated how far it was to the house, so it turns out I was to run farther than 22 miles, about 22.5 actually.
The sun is beating down, and I am whipped. My heart rate is over 170, and I am concerned it's too high. So I walk more. I try to run, but almost immediately the HR goes up to 170 plus. I had read about being careful in the heat, and pay attention to heart rate, so I'm going to play it safe, shelve my ego and walk the last mile. It is now 82 degrees, and I'm in direct Florida sun, I try to run, but that danged HR keeps going up. Besides, the way home is uphill. Like I said, there were lots of hills on this run. So, I mostly walk back, and soon enough I am done.
Total mileage was about 22.5 and the time was just about 5 hours and 7 minute. Not a bad effort for the conditions. I was pretty tired, but still resisted the effort to crash. I did my foam roller and stretches for a short time. Rested a bit then did the stretches and rollers again. I remained kind of tired all day, this run took a lot out of me.
Oh yeah, my knees were perfect! No real pain. My new Altra zero drop shoes are working fine for me. My feet were sore. No pain like I'd been having. Sore is fine, though.
Today, 2 days later I feel fully recovered. So, my longest run ever was a success. I sure hope it is cooler in Savannah when I do my marathon. That would be good. But, even if it gets up to the 80s, I know I can finish.
Thanks for reading and have a great day.