Saturday, September 21, 2013

20 miles and the work is done!

Three weeks from tomorrow is the Chicago Marathon which means that this weekend is the marathon training favorite...the 20 miler!  It was my second 20 miler and, as is usual for me, went much better than the first one!  I didn't even have to walk this time.  The best thing I did was to slow down to the pace I should be running my long runs.  What a difference it makes!  I can make it all the way through the run at the same speed I started at instead of much slower!
Here's my Garmin shot of my run.  This Garmin leaves whatever is showing as the pace when it is shut off instead of showing the average for the whole run.  As soon as it turned over to 20.00 I stopped running.  I didn't stop the Garmin until my last mile split displayed.  I was right by where we end and the few steps I took must have been really really slow - 35:06 minutes/mile!!  20 miles in 3:32:35 is actually a 10:37 pace.  This pace is actually a little off because on the second half of the run I wasn't turning it off when we stopped at the water stops.  I've already messed up two runs by forgetting to turn it back on after a water stop and I was getting tired and didn't want to take the chance of forgetting to turn it back on.  I did turn it off at a water stop where I took a gu but there were three water stops where I just let it run.  We didn't stop long so I'm thinking maybe 2 minutes between the three stops. 
20 miles in 3:32:35 (10:37/mile)
I got to try:
Salted Caramel Gu

I'm not going to say that it is sooooo good, just like gooey caramel smothered over ice cream.  It's doable for me.  I've mentioned a million times that I just can't get past the slimy texture of Gu.  This really does taste like caramel and almost feels like caramel.  I also tried Chocolate Raspberry Gu.  When I squeezed the packet in my fingers it didn't feel like the gel texture of Gu, it felt more solid and thick.  It wasn't that bad.  I'm not sure if I'll use it in the race.  I also tried Honey Stinger Vanilla, didn't like it. 

After my run, all I wanted to do was to go home but...
I had to go to the downtown branch of the running store.  It's only a block away from where my group run meets.  The running store branch I go to on Thursday nights for running group is on the west side of Ann  Arbor.  Thursday I tried on new running shoes.  I've been wearing Asics Gel Foundations for years but they just discontinued the Foundations and replaced them with a new model called the Forte.  I tried on the same size I currently wear (10.5) but I felt like my toe was pushing against the top of the shoe.  They said I really needed to try on a size 11 but they didn't have a size 11 in the store but the downtown store did have an 11.  One of the employees took the 10.5s to the downtown store on Friday so that I could try on both sizes after my run today.  I ended up getting the 11s.  When they held my current shoe sole to sole with the new 10.5, you could see that they didn't quite match up; the new model is just a tad shorter.  The 11s fit perfectly.   I kept "warning" them that they might need nose plugs and I should have come in tomorrow but the woman who waited on me said that it was the best time to try on new shoes because feet swell during a run and my feet would never get any more swollen than right after a 20 miler.  Then I hobbled two blocks to where I parked my car and headed home.  I so wanted to take a nap but had to hurry up and shower so I could help my neighbor.  Their daughter was getting married this afternoon in their yard and they didn't want a bunch of cars to be showing in the pictures so we let them park some cars here.  One of their guests with a mini van shuttled the wedding guests to their house.  After the ceremony and pictures were done, several of the relatives made a few trips to get all the cars back to their place. 
I never did get my nap and I'm exhausted this evening.  Tomorrow I will run an easy 3 miles and then begins the three weeks of........  TAPER!!!!!!!!!!
I am so ready!  I'm tired out from all this running! 

Runner Nerd
happy taperer


  1. Have you tried Power Bar gels? I like them better than Gu because they are more liquidy.

    Congrats on the final long run! Isn't it a great feeling to know that the hay is in the barn and now you just have to focus on recovering from it all and trying to keep your excitement in check! :)

  2. Yes! I have been looking forward to this for 4 months! I'm ready, I'm tired!
    I have tried a couple of Power Bar Gels, they were so sweet.