I had been dreading the 20 mile run that was scheduled for today in my training plan from Runner’s World. I’ve run 20 miles before a few weeks ago and it was incredibly difficult especially in the last few miles. But I did the run and overall it went well.
Mary and I arrived at the mini-gym at my workplace at about 10:15. After stretching and getting a DVD running (Wonderfalls this weekend) I was finally on the treadmill. I ran. And ran. And ran. And ran. And then I ran some more.
After about 8 miles I was feeling pretty good and was toying with the idea of running 21 miles. Right after I had that thought I figured that the run was doomed. I often get this sort of delusional optimism about half way into my long runs. Things feel good and I think that feeling will last forever. It doesn’t. To get that feeling at 8 miles signaled to me that I’d bonk at about 16 miles. Luckily that didn’t happen.
Today I walked a couple of times and sometimes for more than 2 minutes. Most of the walks were when I was eating or at the 1 hour markers when the treadmill shutdown. I think I may have walked one time other than that. As I said the walks were longer than I usually do but they were refreshing and I think they improved my run overall.
I hit 20 miles at after about 3 hours and 22 minutes. I think it was about 3:22:30 but I honestly don’t know. After I hit the 2 hour mark I tend not to care much about seconds anymore. My last 20 mile run (the only other 20 mile run I’ve ever done) took me about 3:40 so this was a pretty significant improvement. I also felt better at the end of this than the last time. That’s not to say that it was easy or perfect but it was better than the last time and that’s all I can ever really hope for.