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MCM14 Training, Week 7: Holding Strong (Enough)

Avg Pace
Monday, 8/25Regular Run39:30
Tuesday, 8/26Regular Run910:45
Wednesday, 8/27Yoga0--
Thursday, 8/28Regular Run79:47
Friday, 8/29Rest0--
Saturday, 8/30Long Run189:54
Sunday, 8/31Rest0--

Total Weekly Mileage: 37

Last week started out a bit rough: I overslept for my Monday morning run and ended up doing three instead of four miles (not a huge deal, and not enough of a shortage for me to want to make up), and I decided I also didn't want to get up early on Tuesday morning, so I decided to do my nine miles that evening. And that was one of the worst runs I've had in recent memory. I haven't run in the evening in some time, so I wasn't used to the lingering heat and humidity from the day, and my stomach wasn't accustomed to running during that part of the day, so I had all kinds of cramps--side stitches, water cramps from drinking too much, and, er, BM cramps. But on top of that, my body had no energy. And my head started hurting. I was just off in every way. But since I'd gotten myself four and a half miles out on Bayshore, I had to do the four and a half miles back to where I parked. I ended up walking a total of a mile or so, which partially accounts for my slower pace that day. I was glad to have done it once I was finished, but doing it was literally painful. I was back on track for my Thursday run, which I did in the morning and had no trouble with. So the only remaining run was the 18-miler on Saturday.

My biggest concern going into this run was my foot; while the pain I'd recently and once again experienced seemed to have eased after some treatment, I knew that a big run like this could potentially cause damage and prevent further training. I must have adjusted the laces on my shoes five times before starting my run "with" the Sharks training group on Davis Islands (I don't actually run in pace with anyone, but I like that other runners are around in the dark), and once after I was 10 miles in. I can't seem to loosen my laces enough on that left shoe, same side as my foot pain, and I wonder if my laces have been a culprit this whole time. Wishful thinking, probably.

I did one mile prior to the group start time of 5:30 a.m., which wasn't much, but anything helps. Soon after, the group began the official run, passing me by like a herd of cattle, at which point I told myself that everyone else was running less mileage and therefore could afford to run faster. What's funny (and sort of annoying) is that I often end up playing leap frog with some of these faster runners, as they tend to stop more and linger at the designated water stops. One great benefit of the Sharks runs is that the organizers provide water and sports drink at three different points along the route. And that's three different opportunities to stop, along with what I consider the main stopping point at the DI Yacht Club, which has a water fountain and real restrooms (as opposed to the port-a-potties in the neighborhood, which I I'm also thankful for). But with so much mileage ahead of me, I didn't want to stop if I didn't really feel I needed to. So my first stop was around seven and a half miles, around the same time others also arrived at the yacht club. But I wasn't even halfway done. I refilled my handheld water bottle, popped a Shot Blok in my mouth, and carried on my steady way.

I got back to the starting point and then proceeded to run another small loop. When I was almost back at the starting point, I realized I'd have to add on about a half mile of distance to get 18. My legs were so over the run. The just didn't want to turn over. When I first started running years ago, I used to have a silly little mantra, more like a cheer, that I said in my head over and over again when I didn't think I could go any farther. It was very simple and to the point: "Go, legs, go!" repeated over and over again. So I revitalized this mantra, if for no other reason than the diversion. I knew I would eventually finish, but focusing on how awful I felt would have had me finishing crappier than finishing with a positive message in mind--silly as it was. Tim also ran 18 and was waiting for me in the parking lot. We were both pooped, but we had a beach vacation to look forward to next!

Probably the very worst thing we could do after running 18 miles was sit in a car for two and a half hours while driving to New Smyrna Beach, on the other coast. But for the sake of beach and family time, this is what we did. As soon as we arrived, we rewarded ourselves:

The rest of the holiday weekend was spent visiting my family--more than I usually get to see at one time these days--playing on the beach, and lounging by the pool. The youngest generation now totals seven, and I loved getting to spend time with all of them!

Tim took one for the team so the whole family could be in the shot.

After walking back and forth on Flagler Avenue multiple times over the weekend, in flip-flops, and not having iced my foot since my long run, I started feeling a bit more pain in my foot again and knew I needed to take better care of it. Luckily I had a massage appointment with Pete in the upcoming week, and he would be able to fix me up.

This coming weekend I have my first 20-miler ahead of me, and I'm feeling pretty confident that I can get it done and not hurt myself much. Those are my lofty goals. Check back to see if I met them!


B.o.B. said…
Great long run and smart to try not to stop every time. I do that now and again but man I love a water stop. (And those neighborhood port-a-potties.) I love New Smyrna. That's the beach I went to went I lived in Orlando. It's much nicer than Cocoa.

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