Saturday, July 30, 2011

18 Miles Is Far

I've had a couple of good weeks in a row now. I'm expecting that I'm turning the corner and getting past some things that have been hindering my running. Also, cooler weather can't be too far around the corner, can it? And, I took a look at the calendar yesterday... If I'm going to run a fall marathon, I have to start getting in marathon shape!

This summer has been admittedly a struggle. I've had some lingering personal issues that I just haven't been able to shake. Those have ZAPPED my motivation. I've been substituting 12-13 mile runs for long runs. While those are okay, they are no substitute for 18-22 milers. My weekly mileage has been in the 45-50 mile range. While that isn't terrible, it's not where I need to be if I want to run a 3 hour marathon.

One positive thing about this summer so far... I have been doing most of my quality runs. I've done tempo and track work and several races as additional tempo runs for the week. I'm probably in as good of 5k shape as I've ever been in (not the best I could be, but as good as I've ever been in). I don't think I could have dropped a sub 19 at this time last year. I think I have a very good chance to break 18 minutes this fall.

So, today, I decided I'd just run far. I planned for 15, then to just see what happened after that. Well, I was feeling pretty good at 13, so I thought I'd try for 16. Late in a run, my math gets pretty bad, so as I was trying to figure out where to run to get 3 miles before I got home, I got all mixed up and ended up running 18 miles. 18 is a lot farther than 12. But, I needed a good, long run. I was exhausted, but it was a good exhausted. I'm glad I did it, and I need to keep doing that.

It's time to get ready to run a marathon.


Dana said...

I am SO SO SO glad to know I'm not the only one who can't do math toward the end of a "long" (for me) run. Emily H talked to our group (long course tri camp) this weekend about nutrition...she said glycogen depletion causes loss of mental capacity. She said if you have trouble thinking that's a good sign you aren't taking in enough calories. What do you think about that from your experience??

reachdown said...

From my experience, there is some truth to it. I find, though, that pain and fatigue interferes with my ability to think clearly, too. I can't do that kind of math at the end of a 5k or 10k race, and I know that glycogen depletion is not a factor at that point. But my mind definitely gets foggier later in long runs. And, that long run was completely devoid of nutrition. I was only taking in water. I just didn't plan to be out long enough to need calories, so I was definitely glycogen depleted! And I was definitely in a mental fog.