Sunday, March 18, 2012

My long run and a race to the finish

My long runs are always a unique experience. During this marathon training I've done them in the sand, through the wind, pouring rain, freezing temps and now the complete darkness of yet another muddy trail. This by far was the most unnerving start of a 16 miler.

I ran at 6am so I could do my 16 and get to the finish line of the Tobacco Road Marathon/Half by the time the half finishers came though. It's a local race that most all of my friends were running. I never run in this part of town but logistically it was the best location if I wanted to catch the end of the race.

This is the best description of running out of an empty, unlit parking lot into the muddy woods:
Everything in the woods has eyes and with my supersonic head lamp I saw them all. Even the frogs on the trail had glowing eyes. So between that and slinging mud for 4 out of 16 miles I was not exactly relaxed. But I figured if I was gonna go out by a rabid squirrel I was gonna go out fast. So I cranked up my music and just ran. 
the mud was more spectacular going on. lol

I was running on part of the marathon course that I planned to evacuate before any racers arrived. I was successful for the most part but I forgot the water stops are set up an hour early. I cut it pretty close so it kinda sorta looked like I was the lead female, running alone and beating the boys..errr. But the volunteers have no idea so for 2 water stops I was fist pumped through with 75 cups of water held out. I apologized and yelled out that I was on my long run and not racing. A nice lady yelled out, who cares, you look great! That was sweet and a total lie. hehe
The run itself was:
2 mile warm up
2x10 min tempo 3 min recovery
9 easy
15 min tempo
1 mile cool down
I was looking for about 6:40-6:45 tempo pace. I did that ok and just ran what felt comfortable for the 9 miles. I noticed they were staying sub 7 for a while I felt good and went with it. There was about 500 feet of elevation so it probably was a result of the hills.

I also wore a heart rate monitor for the first time.  169 avg. Someone asked me to wear one on my long run. I'll google it.
So I finished 16 miles in 1:52. 7:02 average and hauled ass to the marathon finish in my car. Parked, took a bus and just missed the 90 minute mark of the half. errr.

I got to see all my friends after the half and then waited 2 hours shivering my ass off for the marathoners  to finish. Totally worth the wait to see my sister finish her first marathon and a ton of other friends rock out a marathon in really shitty conditions.
I had no idea I had headlamp forehead dent all morning. lol!
Tobacco Road finish


Another good running weekend!! Have a great week friends!


  1. ugh that's my marathon heart-rate :/

    1. that's good B. That is NOT my marathon pace despite what my coach thinks. Hell no, I am not doing that for 26 miles. Maybe 7:15 for the beginning and then drop it. I don't think I could hold 7 flat for more than 20 miles.

  2. aw don't second guess now! ;)