Sunday, December 14, 2008


This long run went okay, but I'm not feeling so good now. I'll try and write about it tomorrow when I'm feeling more myself.

Okay so as I said I enjoyed this run, at least till about 3 hours or so. At the "end" of middlebrook (I call it the end because I actually just don't want to wait to cross the street for traffic) I decided to make a right turn. It had never really crossed my mind before, but this time I saw a piece of sidewalk that turned right and just decided to keep on going. It turned out to be pretty awesome. I ran on down toward an elementary school and then ran behind that. That's when I found the greenway. It went through a nice little park area with lots of open grass. The path wasn't too long maybe a mile or so, but it kind of looped through the park. It was nice to actually be running somewhere I haven't for once. There is something special about going somehwere you haven't been yet, and I was excited to be running there.

The bad part about this greenway was that there was a water fountain just to the right of the path. I know what you're thinking, "isn't that a good thing Ron?". Believe me it would have been an awesome thing, and I was eagerly awaiting a drink from it as I was halfway through with my 3.5 hour run. But when I pushed the button I got nothing. Not a drip or a drizzle. That was a bit frustrating. So that was sort of a downer to the fun. I started back up the hill which led into the park and turned back on to middlebrook. I saw another runner who had a Buddy's t-shirt on, and we both said "Nice Shirt" or something to that effect and laughed as we passed each other. So I went on back down to walmart, through the tunnel under the road which is always a welcome sight, and then back down the rest of middlebrook to the park.

I had originally planned to run the trail that leads off of the tunnel, but I was kind of wanting to get this thing done and had about an hour or less left at that point. I really needed water or a drink, but it was still 20 minutes at least till I could get some. So I just kept on going. I did have a fourth of a marathon bar, which are great by the way, and I had that at around 2 hours. Still, it was just a tiny piece and I was starting to feel a bit empty (probably moreso from lack of fluid) I made it up the final stretch of hill and headed on back to the park. Before I made it there I had another problem and that was I really had to use the bathroom. I've never really "had" to go during a run. Although the feeling was really bad, I just wanted to get the run over, and I knew there were bathrooms at the park...

I got back to my car in about 3 hours and took some well earned and quick sips of gatorade then resumed the last half hour of my run. At this point I really wanted to check out the bathrooms and when I ran up to them I read a lovely sign saying "closed for the winter". That put yet another damper on the run, but I trudged on, my legs at this point feeling the effects of running for 3 hours. Luckily I was on grass now, in the back soccer fields. That felt good, but I was struggling a bit just to keep going. I was listening to podcasts this entire time, namely phedippidations because some of them are an hour long (I listened to almost four...) and I just happened to get to a point when he was quoting Bill Rodgers repeating mantra's to himself to keep going, keep running, run, run, run at the end of a marathon. That actually carried over into my own to run and I suddenly found a bit of extra endorphins to just keep on going and push through the painful achiness of maxed out leg muscles.

One loop around the soccer fields and then a little out and back and the run was finally over. I considered going an extra bit, but 3.5 was a new personal longest time spent on foot, so I somewhat happily ended the run. When I got home I was dead tired. My legs were pretty beat up, mostly the calves and muscles around the knee. I had a hard time standing, and was just exhausted. I took an hour nap on the couch, got up and ate a snack, then went to bed about 3 hours early.

Fortunately I don't plan on running much further than what I did today for a while, and each time I go long it does get a bit easier. Last week my legs were "hurting" with that achiness at around 2.5 hours, this week it was closer to 3. But the overall plan is to keep running long, but sort of not go beyond 3 or 3.5 until midway through my speed training. For one reason it is hard on the legs and requires more recovery, and obviously the second is that it may take away from the quality of my speedwork. So I really want to focus on my speed and not have my long run interfere. But a few weeks into my speed training I will start going back up and get to at least 30 miles. I might be running that now as I'm pretty sure i'm running faster than 8:00 minute miles, but I want to be sure so I'm leaving it as is. Today was 26 miles - actually 26.25 so at least a full marathon. At 8 minute pace my final long run about two or three weeks before the marathon will be around 4 hours and 15-30 minutes. It's just penciled in on my schedule, so it may change, 3 months is a bit of ways out and I'm always adding or subtracting until then.

2:11pm. ball camp+greenway. 52-53 degrees winds 10mph.
3:30:39, bf 843
note: joint pain at the metatarsal base of my big toes.

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