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Saturday, September 8, 2007

Galloway Training, Week 17

I know I've been doing my marathon training blogging on the private blog, but I am SO PROUD of this run today... probably the most proud of any run I've ever done that's not a race.

So, the alarm went off at (UGH) 3:30am. I was at the parking lot by about 4:30 and we started running at 4:45am. Yes, it was dark and early. Sunrise wasn't until about 6:45, so we had plenty of dark time. We started out going north and I was in the lead since I was the one with the light and no one wanted to run in the glow of my lamp. I was half asleep and not particularly social, getting pushed a little by Nancy & Tom, and wasn't paying attention. Sometime around mile 3 or 4, I looked around to find that the only people running with me were Tom, Kristy and Nancy (Nancy usually runs with Maria's group). I had no idea we'd left the rest of the group behind and if I did realize it, I would have slowed down.

I did feel like we were going pretty fast. We were going around 13:30-14 minute pace. Too fast. But I kept up with it anyway... peer pressure. It was gorgeous outside, though. There was just a little sliver of moon and the stars were bright and pretty and at one point around mile marker 6, there's a bridge and a barn in the distance. There was fog around the barn and the moon above looked so beautiful. Awesome.

So, my blisters were acting up. My usual ones from last year on my left pinky and next-to-pinky toes weren't too too bad, because I'd worn my toe tube for the first time this year, and I'd wrapped the pinky in a blister bandaid. There's another one that's been popping up lately on my left instep that I think is caused by the orthotics I wear. I'm too lazy to go to the podiatrist to get it looked at. I was worried because I had a long way to go and they were hurting before even the first water stop. I decided to make it my goal that I would make it back to Monkton after we turned around.

So, first water stop at Monkton (mile 7) and Karen's group and Todd's group (he was running with Andrea) showed up right afterwards. I'd gone through 2 bottles of Nuun and filled up, and ate the Saltines that I'd dropped off at the running store yesterday because lately I've been craving salt and not sugar during long runs. It was rough after the break, hard going up north. At last, we made it to White Hall where there was a second water stop. We were going to turn around at mile marker 11, but we realized that in order to get our full mileage in we'd have to go to Ashland at the end, so it seemed more appealing to turn around at half way between 11 and 12. So, that's what we did.

Back at White Hall again, we stopped for our second break. I was having trouble eating and I could barely drink. I was basically feeling pretty awful. Todd was at that water stop as well, and he headed on as we left.

We decided to play the movie game that I'd suggested earlier in the run. Basically, it's like six degrees - you name a person and a movie they were in. The next person picks another person that was in the same movie and then names another movie that they were in. And so on. This kept us occupied all the way back down to Monkton and the miles really went by fast. It was actually a lot of fun and helped me to get my mind off how much everything was hurting.

So, we made it back down to Monkton. Things had leveled off on the blister front, so I decided to head on. However, it was only about a half mile to 3/4 of a mile before I realized that I couldn't keep up with that pace we'd been running and I fell behind. I told the others to go on... I was feeling so bad. Nausea, a headache, legs and feet were hurting. The arthritis in my feet was so bad I couldn't stand it. I made it my goal to make it only to Sparks and then have someone pick me up. I switched to 1:1s for maybe 5 minutes, but I couldn't even manage that. I was feeling terrible.

So, I walked. I walked for a mile and a half. I was a mess for a while, I had no idea what mile marker I was at, I had no idea what was going on . It was weird. I would have liked to have walked it in, but I knew that if Sue and Debra caught up with me, I was either going to have to stop, since I didn't have a cell phone, or I was going to have to try and keep up with them. Trying to run again after walking 2-3 miles was going to be too rough, so I switched back to 1:1s and found it wasn't too bad after the first few minutes. Amazingly, I was keeping a 15 minute pace pretty much on the dot.

Brenda was on her bike on the trail, asking me how I was and I was letting her know that I was ok, but I cannot thank her enough for being out there - I really needed to know someone was keeping an eye on me.

Finally, I got to Sparks. There was a car that looked like Todd's car parked there and I know for certain that if it had been his, I would have gotten in and gone home and forgot about the rest of the run. But as long as Sue and Debra hadn't caught up with me, and since I was happy with my pace, I decided to press on and make my goal Phoenix. If I made it to Phoenix, I would have run 20.5 miles, which was very respectible. So, onward.

Some other people had passed... Bobby's group, Lori, some others, and I was telling them I was doing ok as long as Sue and Debra were behind me. Brenda told me she could call someone if I stopped at Phoenix. Phoenix came and I realized I was feeling pretty horrible, but I could make it another 1.5 miles to Paper mill. It was the point of no return - there were no cross streets between Phoenix and Paper Mill, so if I passed Phoenix I had to make it back, even if I walked it in. But, like I said, it was only a mile and half when I'd already gone 20.5.

I went on. It was hot and miserable and everything hurt. It's a weird way to describe it... everything hurt. I was hungry, but couldn't eat. I was forcing myself to drink. I managed to keep that 15 minute pace and Sue and Debra, Natalie and everyone caught up with me right at the Paper Mill parking lot.

I MADE IT. I FRICKIN' MADE IT. I MADE IT 22 MILES THAT I NEVER THOUGHT I'D FINISH. And I was positive at the end. As happy as I was for finishing the 2 marathons. It was a frickin' accomplishment. This was longer than any training run that I did last year. I ran the last part of it by myself when I hate running by myself and have so much trouble running alone.

Here's a crazy thing...

Today, I ran 22 miles in 5:41:46. That's a pace of 15:32. 26.2 at 15:32 is 6:47:18. I estimate that the water breaks were a total of 23 minutes, bringing my time to 6:24 for a marathon which is... my Disney marathon time.

I ran marathon pace today.

Weird. And if I had to, if I would have gotten a medal for doing it, I could have gone another 4.2 miles at that 15 minute pace doing 1:1s.

Not that it's any revelation that I can run a marathon in 6:24, and my goal is 6 hours this year, but somehow that still is really impressive.

Anyway, post-run, things are sore. I went home and Todd, who also had trouble during his run, had bought me a quarter pounder from McDonald's (did I mention he is the best guy ever?). Getting my shoes off was rough, my blister on my instep is bad. My joints in my feet are KILLING me, my legs are very sore. I'm definitely in the worst pain I've been in for training this year. I ate the McDonald's and took a shower and then tried to sleep but only managed to dose for 30 minutes or so.

I've sort of laid around all day and finally slept for about an hour and a half around 6 or 7pm.

I'm exhausted, but happy and proud.

1 comment:

Lyss said...

Congratulations! Keep up the good work!!

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