06 December, 2010

The 20 Mile Milestone!

** Taking a quick break from my Disney Running 101 to give everyone a training update!  The next Disney Running 101 post is almost complete so I should be able to post it after handing in my final paper for one class on Wed! **

Wow, another training week is complete....and this weeks was a biggie!

I was feeling pretty good after the 18 last week so I decided to push and try for the 20 this week so I can get back to my original training schedule.  My two mid-week runs were jammed together since the first few days of the week were packed with school and going to Rockefeller Center to see the Christmas tree lighting.  I'll try post some of those pics after I'm done editing them.

12/2/10: 6 miles of Intervals 3 miles of street running, 3 miles on the treadmill (Garmin Data for the 3 outdoor miles)... My body was tired from the crazy 3 days prior and I really couldn't stomach sitting on a treadmill for 6 full miles doing intervals.  Decided to break up the run and at least get the distance in.  Ran outside for 3 miles, which wasn't horrible minus the pitch black streets, the iPod that died a quarter mile in, and the COLD!  It went by quickly though.  After I got back to the gym I jumped on the treadmill and quickly pumped out the last 3 miles while listening to a few podcasts on my other iPod.  Didn't feel horrible after and glad I got in the distance.

12/3/10:  6 miles steady pace 2 miles of intervals... I know...I was supposed to do 6 today too but after doing the 6 the very day prior, my legs were spent! Jumped on the treadmill to do at least a few miles of intervals and by mile 2 I was SO bored and tired.  I could have pushed for 3 but honestly didn't feel like doing anything.  There was also a line for the treadmills so I reasoned with myself that I should get off.  :(

12/5/10:  20 miles (Garmin Data)... The BIG one! This day seemed SO far away when I first started thinking about running a full marathon and here it is and I got through it pretty successfully!  Tried to get out to the park earlier than my last few long runs so I met up with my BFF Christina (who's running the half!) around 9am so we can start our runs together.  Excited to say we're both pretty much where we need to be in terms of distance now to be ready for our races! 

Did I mention it was COLD??? Like 32 degrees cold and the windiest it's been in a few weeks so who knows what the wind chill was.  We've ran in colder weather last year but we were both completely blank as to what to wear for the run, it was quite entertaining over text messages before we met in the park.  Ear warmer?? Gloves?! Fleece? Decided on my CW-X Performx running tights (they've kept me warm in 17 degree weather and I ran the half last year in them), 2 long sleeve running shirts, ear warmers, gloves, and my Helly Hanson fleece jacket which I was prepared to shed along the way and pick up when I looped around if I had to.

Having pockets in the fleece jacket also allowed me to carry more fun food items to test out...plus my phone!  A friend of mine the night before suggested that I carry my phone during really long runs...not even for safety purposes (I have a RoadID for that too) but when I start losing my mind and determination, to just text someone or update Facebook with a quick few words if I take a walk break.  I figured why not, right?  It won't hurt!

The run itself was decent.  I think I was definitely sluggish from my 18 miles only 7 days prior.  No matter what I tried, it was a struggle to keep  my pace over 11min/mile.  After awhile I realized there was no point in trying to struggle with it and to just run at whatever pace my body wanted.  Just like last time, mile 15 and the subsequent miles were even more of a struggle.  I just couldn't keep my pace up at all and it slowly slipped after every mile.  The weather might have played a factor too.  I ended up keeping the fleece on and just unzippnig it when I got warm.  Whenever I turned a corner and the wind was whipping me around, I was completely glad I decided not to take it off!  The wind was BRUTAL!

One of the lakes at the barren park....looks thrilling, right?

Mentally though throughout all 20, I felt pretty decent!  It was probably a combination of constantly eating, as well as updating my Facebook.  Around mile 7 I took out my phone and updated my status with something quick like "7 of 20 down..." and then put my phone away immediately.  At mile 9 I took it back out again and saw I had at least 6-10 comments of encouragement from friends and my Running of the Ears gang and it put a smile on my face.  Loved it!  I think I updated again at 10, 13, and 18.  It was great!  I might have to actually carry my phone with me on the day of the race! The virtual cheering squad totally helped!  There were also a good number of other crazy people that braved the weather and were out enjoying a run or walk.  The smiles and nods from passing runners always give me a teeny pick-me-up.   

In terms of food?  I found I totally LOVE Twizzler Nibs (the cherry ones) to run with.  They're hard when it's that cold out but they didn't get stuck in my teeth.  The Gu Chomps worked too but they were a little too  chewy for me for some reason.  I know they're needed though.  Another mini bag of pretzels was consumed on this run and I really enjoy them.  Plus?  I had bought electrolyte caplets to test out towards the end of the run.  I was warned that they can wreak havoc on my stomach so I waited until I only had about 5 miles left.  Took one every mile for 3 miles and no stomach problems at all!  I'll try them out again soon on my next long run to double check.  But as of now I'll be taking all 4 items with me on race day. 

Just me and my shadow

After a fabulous stretch and chugging a coffee flavored Honey Milk (my recovery drink...it's fabulous!) I quickly jumped in my car to warm up and headed to my dads to spend the rest of my day (and shower!).  As the day wore on, I wasn't horribly sore.  My lower back started to hurt but I laid on the floor and stretched a few times and that did the trick.  This morning isn't so bad either so hoping I don't get much worse tomorrow. 

Seriously...I never thought I'd see the day when I actually ran 20 miles...ME!!  Again, it's still hard for me to comprehend that I have to add 6.2 more to that on race day but mentally I know I'll be ok.  It doesn't seem as impossible as it used to and considering that I ran by myself without any crowds or awesome Disney scenery around me, I believe I'm ready.  I still have my 22 mile run to do in two weeks but will totally be ok if I have to bump that down to another 20. :)  "Easy" week coming up of 4mi-6mi-10mi so hoping I can stick to it perfectly!

5 weeks to go!!!


  1. Twenty miles!! Holy cow!! I can honestly say that I don't really know that I will EVER do 20 at one time. That is so cool!

    I'm looking forward to your upcoming post with racing advice. When I ran yesterday I had thought of some questions I had for you - and of course once I stopped running they just vanished!

  2. I can't even imagine that.. I did 7 this past weekend (my 3rd 7 ever) and it still seemed insane to me.. I like the twizzler nib idea! All of the protein bites I've tried are disgusting! I'm sticking with chocolate gu.. hopefully that's all I'll need for 13.1!

  3. I've been reading your blog for a while. I found it through a Google search on WDW marathon topics. Great blog! And like you, I am both running the marathon in January and addicted to Disney.

    Congratulations on the 20-mile milestone! It's a great accomplishment. Keep up the good work.

    Remember, less than 1 percent of the population has ever run a marathon. If it was easy, everyone would be doing it. You'll be joining a very rare club!

  4. Congratulations!!! How exciting to hit that 20 mile goal!! Not too much longer until the race now! :)

  5. @FruitFly...Never say never! :) Before I ran my first half marathon I SWORE and would have bet LOTS of money that I would never EVER run a full marathon. Only CRAZY people do that, right? Well...I crossed that finish line last January after my first half and instantly said 'OK, when's the full?' :)

    @DisneyBabies...Congrats on the 7! You'll get to 13.1 before you know it. Why can't companies create nutrition stuff that actually taste good? The chocolate gu is my favorite but the consistency is what gets to me. I can't just 'shoot' them quickly. It takes me time to finish one!

    @Anonymous...can I call you anonymous? :) Thanks for reading! So glad I found other Disney running freaks like me. We can all be crazy together, right? Thanks about the 20! How is your training going?

    @Niffercoo...Thank you! I can't believe it's like 30 days away from today...omg!