Friday, April 8, 2016

30 mile training run

I was hoping to try a little of everything while running,
and had no idea what I might want!
This morning I set out for a 30 mile training run. I am 3 1/2 weeks out from my 50 mile Ultra and really felt like I needed one more good set of back to back long runs in (30 today, 10 tomorrow). I haven't done a whole lot of long runs due to my Achilles Rupture (back in January here) so with my physical therapists on-board, I set out for this last hurrah to give myself piece of mind.

The sunrise around mile 3

I woke up at 5:45 am (after working until 11 pm last night) and ate 2 small pancakes (with chocolate chips of course), half of a banana and a glass of water. I got dressed, packed all my gear up and left around 6:40 am. I mapped my route in advance and planned for my bike support to meet me around mile 10 (my husband carried all my Gatorade and some of my food for me so my pack wouldn't be tooooo heavy). I planned to use the run/walk method with 5 minutes of running and 1 of walking after mile 18 and hoped to eat a variety of foods while running so I would know what and how much I could tolerate without getting myself sick.

The high was 82 so it was a very warm run. My route included an overpass (twice), a bridge (twice) and the huge toll bridge (twice), along with some dirt trail.

This was around mile 7, coming up on my first set of
bathrooms (next bathroom on my course was at
the mile 20 turnaround!) 
My first 10 miles were pretty slow and steady. My husband ended up getting a little bit of a late start and met me around mile 12. This run was a very challenging run for me mentally. In ALL my long training runs and races I have done over the last few years I have never experienced mental challenges like today. By mile 18 I was already throwing in random walk breaks (not timed, or scheduled). I was really struggling... yes, I said I was really struggling at mile 18. In my head I thought, "if I am struggling this much now, there is NO WAY I will be able to finish 50, what was I thinking?" I got caught in this negative thought process I couldn't shake myself out of. My husband seemed to be at a loss for words the entire ride so I had nothing to distract me or get my mind off of it. Around mile 22 I was crying and feeling so overwhelmed by the idea of running 50 miles when I already felt so miserable. I thought to myself "I obviously have not trained enough to complete this task. I am going to fail."
Over the bridge, one thing I love about my town are the
beautiful views!
I finally snapped myself out of it around mile 26 remembering "I have trained for this, I can do this all day, it will be over before I know it, I am just going out for a little run..." Most people have 1 mantra they use for their long runs, those are mine. I had a whole series of phrases I "reminded" myself of, not sure if that's what did the trick, but I think it definitely helped me to overcome myself, and finish strong. I finished 30.10 miles today. Physically this run was pretty easy, I was tired and that didn't help my mental status but overall I felt great. My Achilles didn't give me ANY problems and I had no pain. My legs felt good, my breathing was good, everything was on - except my brain!

I finished in 5 1/2 hours averaging 11:20 per mile. Once I finished I had 45 minutes to re-coop at home before I had to head into work for a 2 hour mandatory meeting. I was famished.

My average heart rate was a little
higher than I'd have liked, but I
think that mostly had to do
with the warm temperatures.
This was my cadence and elevation.
Have I mentioned how much
I LOVE my new Garmin 235?

All of my average stats for the run.
Green graph is my elevation, bottom
is the amount of time I spent
in each cardio zone.

During my run I consumed:
2 Honey Stinger gel packs
1 pack of Honey Stinger gummies
3/4 of a PB&J sandwich
2 Pringles
6 Salt Capsules
3 mini Gatorades
3 liters of Water

I will say I felt like I did a great job on my fueling/hydration while running, and I felt pretty good the whole time. I didn't get hungry, or GU gut. I never really felt thirsty and experienced no cramping. After I finished I realized I didn't do as good as I thought. With the warm and sunny day I didn't pee my entire run, or for over 3 hours after I finished running. YIKES! This run was great because I learned that I could make myself finish even when I don't feel like it is going to be an option, and that I will need to make sure I consume MORE than 3 liters of water by the 30 mile mark of my 50 mile Ultra. I feel like those are both very valuable lessons that will benefit me for the big race. I hope I enjoy it more than I enjoyed today's training run!
Me and my Love going over the toll bridge
I also want to give a HUGE shout out to my amazing, supportive husband who rode 21 miles at a very slow pace on his mountain bike carrying a ton of Gatorade, extra water, food ect. He was so patient with me while I was grumpy and miserable, and helped encourage me after mile 22 when I became very vocal about wanting to be done running. He helps me push myself, and see what I am really capable of.

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