Today I met up with the 2 Sue(s) for our weekly long run. The temperature was in the 20s, much warmer than what we have gotten ourselves used to. I had to ditch a layer on the bike path, behind a tree. We all had challenging weeks, including minor surgery for me on Wednesday, so we were ready for a nice chat on a beautiful day.
The challenge for today was to run 20miles at 9:35 (OK, we settled on 9:20, cheating a bit on the FIRST program), and to do a few hill repeats. We went on our usual route on the Minute Man bike path, 2 loops around Fresh Pond, but we ended up running toward Watertown before turning back into Belmont for the humongous hills. Around mile 6 I realized I forgot to eat my banana with peanut butter and salt, and freaked out a bit that I may be too low on calories. I only had oatmeal and coffee in the am. Yikes! I had 2 gels but did not think that would be enough. I ended up telling myself that I would buy a banana or a bagel on the route if I got too hungry. I never had to do that. The pizza, squash soup and a bit of icecream I had the night before, and the 2 gels were just perfect. I felt strong, so strong. We averaged 9:13 for the run, including 2 hill repeats of .5 mile up each, and a few other (5-6 ) smaller hills on the way. I felt tired during the last 2 miles I did on my own at the end of the run, but decided this would be an opportunity to push myself a bit, to get my mind and muscles used with what I would be feeling at the end of the marathon (hopefully not sooner), and I ended up averaging 9:03 for the 20 miles. Still, it is hard for me to believe that I am going to be able to run Boston @ 8:35 min/miles, but I have 4 other 20 milers, each faster than the previous one, so I have to trust that I am going to pull it together.
At home, I continued to feel great. During the last 3 weeks I napped after each run and I was still queasy and tired and out of it. Not today. I think my body is getting used to the long mileage. Hoo Ho! I feel so awesome! Next week I am going to be in Miami and then Bahamas for a cruise with my family, but the boat has a treadmill and a pool and a gym and a daycare, so I will be able to do my workouts. And next Saturday, another long run:)
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