Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Last Hurrah

Today, I did my last "long" training run before the marathon - a measly 8 miles in Rocky River. :)

It's great how, around this time of year, every week is different and exciting, because the trees look slightly different.  Last week was a bit wet and soggy because of rain the day before, and I was a little worried about slipping and sliding.  Today was just gorgeous.  The only "wild card" was that so many leaves had fallen that it was sorta hard to see the ground (and any bumps, grooves, or fallen branches that might be hidden).  Luckily, I ran the entire thing without incident!

Another aspect that was different as a result of the leaf-laden paths was that sometimes the mile markers were also hidden.  Hence, the weird split times which I will share below.  Also, I feel that some of these miles are very long, and others are SUPER short.  Oh well.  I guess it all evens out.  You'll see this happen twice, as it's an out-and-back course.  And by the way, how sweet that I got to turn around so early...after weeks and weeks of doing anywhere from 12-20 miles on this same trail.

I wanted to do this at marathon pace or maybe a little faster, just to make the pace next week feel easier.  Again, the voices in my head were debating: push, or hold back?  I know that right now, it's best to play it safe...still, I couldn't help going for my goal time of an hour and 30 minutes.  Let's see how it played out:

Mile 1 - 11:14
Mile 2 - 12:26 (this was one of those "didn't see the marker" splits)
Mile 3 - 9:24 (and I obviously missed it about 1 1/2 minutes back!)
Mile 4 - 12:33
Mile 5 - 12:34
Mile 6 - 9:55
Mile 7 - 12:30 (again, just missed it so I estimated)
Mile 8 - 8:52 (hmmm.)

Total time: 1:29:32 - yes!, 11:11 pace (perfect for marathon or maybe that's a little faster)
First half: 45:39 /  Second half: 43:53 - yay negative splits!

The thought that kept going through my head was...this is it.  This is the last long training run for this marathon!  You've done it!  No matter what happens next Sunday...I'll know that I trained my best for this race.  I mean, there's always MORE we can do (like not eating like a pig? doing more weight training? etc.) but I think I did a pretty great job.  Now we'll just have to see what the day has in store for me.

On tap this week:

Monday - OFF
Tuesday - 4 easy
Wednesday - OFF
Thursday - 3 easy
Friday - OFF - travel to NY!
Saturday - 2 just to loosen up
Sunday - RACE!

Also, I am a carb-loading machine.  That's all.

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