RnR NOLA Marathon Training, Week 4 of 12

week of 11.23Wow, 1/3 of the way through and time is flying by. I sucked this week in that I only ran twice – the days leading up to Thanksgiving were busy and tiring as I tried to get everything squared away at work so that we could leave for a 4-day weekend. I feel like this affected me in my long run, and I definitely aspire to run 3-4 times next week.

Thursday, Ran 3.5 miles

IMG_7782This Turkey Trot, which involved 1.5 miles on a trail, was very fun although the trail part reminded me of some of my lingering aches and pains, particularly my left IT band. I did a race recap here.

Saturday, Ran 18 miles

IMG_7812Oh, how I conspired against myself in this run without even knowing it. I knew ahead of time that the temps would be warm, high 60s by 11 a.m. But did I get up extra early so I could get my run done before the heat started rising? Nope, I lackadaisically headed out about 8:30 or so after pressing the snooze button a thousand times. Then, did I eat a bagel and PB breakfast like I normally do for runs of 13+ miles? Nope, the thought of eating breakfast completely slipped my mind! I remembered literally everything else I needed for this run – just forgot to fuel properly. 😛 I did take a PowerBar energy gel before leaving the house.

So I get out to the riverfront path and start running. Pretty soon I see some guys sprinting in the opposite direction on the adjacent road. Apparently there was a 5K downtown this morning. For the next two or three miles, I kept my eye on the 5Kers as a form of distraction. Pretty early on I felt thirsty and knew that because of the warmer weather, I would need to drink more often than I normally do. I turned around at 2.5 miles and went back to my car, grabbing my new Nathan Quickshot handheld water bottle, which had water in it. I at least planned that much. I also put some Gu Chomps in the little pocket. I ran back the way I had just come and saw the 5Kers having their awards ceremony. I had thought about running some in downtown Shreveport, but I am not familiar with the area and thought better of it after a short time. At this point I think I stopped my Garmin for a stoplight and then forgot to re-start it when I began running again, and I am not sure how much distance I lost here. Maybe 0.10 to 0.20. My fault. No more stopping Garmin for stoplights.

At 10.5 miles I refilled my handheld with Gatorade at my car, applied some Body Glide and headed to the opposite path which is 3 miles one way. It ends at a park, and normally I turn around and run back for a 6-mile loop. The downfall of this is there are no water fountains after the beginning of the path, and so I knew I was going to need the Gatorade to keep me going. If I had completed this loop, I’d only have 1.5 miles left when I returned back to my car. Well, the handheld did not leak when it had water in it, but the Gatorade (RED) started flying out and leaking all over my hands and flinging itself on my clothes as I ran. I stopped and made sure the top was secure, which it was, but it kept leaking everywhere. I think I lost about half the bottle due to this. No idea why it started doing this, but I was left with very little Gatorade. At mile 12 I was OVER IT. Did not want to keep running. My proverbial “Wall” was hit. Plus that path is so boring and oftentimes exposed to the sun, and I just mentally hated it. I would have reached the park at 13.5 miles, but at 13 miles I was tired and out of Gatorade and decided to turn around at that point so I could get back to the water fountain. I ran super slow and walked once or twice, particularly when approaching hills – there were a few.

18 miles elevationI finally reached the water fountain at 15.15 miles, and after getting tons of water, refilling my handheld and eating more Gu Chomps, I set out for the “death march” to get to 18 miles. No way was I quitting when I had gotten this far! I passed my car at 15.4 and so I decided to run to 16.7 miles and then I could turn around and run the remaining 1.3 miles back to my car. I walked several times until I got to 16.7 miles, often giving myself a landmark where I would have to start running again. But once I hit the turnaround point and I knew I was really almost done, I felt a boost of motivation and ran the vast majority of my remaining distance. I didn’t even feel super happy to be done, just relieved. This was rough. Definitely only using water in my handheld from now on, eating breakfast before long runs and I need to take another energy gel at some point for this distance. Training runs are good for learning lessons.

I have finally discovered Garmin Connect/Express, the online version, so I synced my Garmin and have been playing around with it. Pretty fun.

18 miles course splits for 18 milesTotal mileage: 21.5

I will run 3-4 times next week.

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