Sunday, March 1, 2009

Getting Longer - and harder

Get your minds out of the gutter, you sickos! This is a family friendly blog. Naturally, I am referring to the length and difficulty of my run. This morning was yet another milestone as I set out on an 18km training run, well into double digits in miles now (11.18, to be exact). The sun coming in through the kitchen window, warming up the room, was deceiving me and I was hoping that the actual air temperature would be warmer than the predicted -9C. Alas, the thermometer was reading -10C when I left! Luckily the wind was not as strong and gusty as anticipated.

I filled up Owen's big water bottle (since I had none of my own at this point) and put it in his belt (the one he won last weekend), but that proved completely futile. First, the belt was not really working for me today in that the bottle was flopping all over the place and was very distracting, and second because the water bottle was leaking like the recreational real estate market in Florida. Within a 100 metres I was carrying it my right hand and would do so for the entire run.

As mentioned, it was pretty cold, and it took me a while to warm up. I tried to consciously slow myself down at the beginning since this was the longest run I've ever attempted and I didn't want to completely run out of gas before the end. My first kilometre ended up being my slowest (at 5:35), but the variance from the slowest to the fastest was not very much, which was good and means that I kept a pretty steady pace throughout. The fastest split was my last kilometre (5:07) for a nice bookend to the run, and my average pace was 5:20/km, or 8:35/mile, and it took me 1:36:03 to complete the entire 18km run. The route was relatively flat, but there were a couple of pretty long, though not steep, hills near the middle which were a good test. I have to keep including long hills in these long runs as I prepare for the 30k race at the end of the month since the last 10k of that route is pretty much all uphill.

I must admit that it was tough mentally to keep going on this run. I was glad to have loaded up my IPod with some music and I had this along for the ride wearing a cheap pair of headphones that I picked up yesterday. These things were under $20 and very old school indeed - they look very much like the headphones that came with those early 80s Walkmans! However, at no point in the run were they a problem so I think these were the right choice, fashionable or not. Here's a visual:

Later, we went to the Running Room in the Beaches and I picked up two water bottles, one with one of those hand held straps. They are smaller than the one I was borrowing from Owen and I figure I can use his belt to carry one while I hold the other in my hand. This way I can have one filled with Gatorade (which I used today, and it seems to have worked well) and the other with water. I am far from finished with experimenting with the whole hydration and carb thing while running, but I am glad that the Gatorade didn't make my stomach cramp on this run.

Garmin don't lie.

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Blogger aron said...

AWESOME job!!! :)

March 1, 2009 at 8:24 PM  
Blogger Melanie said...

congrats on your new milestone!

March 1, 2009 at 8:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Way to continue to build up the mileage! I hat it when the fuel belts and bottle don't cooperate.

March 2, 2009 at 7:22 AM  
Blogger Marcy said...

I thought you were going to show us one of those MONSTER pair of headphones. (You know what I'm talking about, right?) Those ones are that bad! Hey as long as they work, who cares!

March 2, 2009 at 9:46 AM  
Blogger Chad in the AZ Desert said...

Those really are old-school. Nice job with the 18k. It looks like you are preparing well for that 30k.

March 2, 2009 at 10:37 AM  
Blogger The Happy Runner said...

Great job! That's good that you didn't have any problems w/the Gatorade.

March 2, 2009 at 12:47 PM  
Blogger Blyfinn said...

Congrats on the accomplishment! I remember when I first hit my distance milestone. Great day.

March 2, 2009 at 6:23 PM  

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