Sunday, August 9, 2009

The Last 8 Days in Review...

Where have the last 8 days gone?? I can't believe it's been so long since I've posted. Between working at school, working two nights at Weight Watchers, helping my daughter fix up her condo, fund raising for team Autism Speaks, and doing yard work and other jobs at home I still managed to run six of the last eight days. For most of you, that's not a big deal. For me it is. I usually run three or four days per week for reasons I have stated in previous posts and won't repeat.
Last week I ran a total of 36.1 miles, including a 20 miler yesterday. Lately I've been running 36 miles in about two weeks, so I feel like I've accomplished a lot lately with my training. Even though it's summer, we haven't had a 90 degree day in Connecticut since April. Weird. However, it's been close to 90, and the humidity is still here. So my daily runs have averaged anywhere from an 8:29 per mile pace (a week ago), to a 10:34 per mile pace during my 20 miler yesterday. I really don't have any great stories to tell or memorable moments to tell about any of my runs, other than the 20 miler. So I guess I'll give you some highlights of the 20 miler...
Before starting, I did my pre-long run ritual of mixing up two 24 oz. bottles of Hammer Nutrition's Sustained Energy. I also filled up my two 16 oz. bottles with just water. The reasoning behind this is that I run half of my long run with a bottle of Sustained Energy and a bottle of water. The Sustained Energy, as I said in another post, "One of the original long distance fuels, Sustained Energy has attained a legendary status in the world of endurance sports since its introduction in 1992. Tested and proven in virtually every endurance event on the planet, Sustained Energy's unique 7:1 carbohydrate to protein ratio, and it's neutral flavor, is still the first choice of thousands of athletes. After about two hours of exercise you need to have some protein in your fuel or you will start to cannibalize or break down precious muscle tissue." So I alternate drinking it along with water, and honestly believe it helps. Most importantly, it doesn't give me stomach cramps or other issues. I also downed a Vanilla Bean flavored GU Gel 15 minutes before I started. I was disappointed that I didn't have any Hammer Nutrition Endurolytes to take, since they offer "Superior cramp prevention, a full spectrum electrolytes in a balanced formula, and a versatile dosing for a variety of conditions." Turns out I could have used some "Superior cramp prevention." More on that later. (Busy, busy, busy-I'm continuing this at 4:30 a.m. Tuesday!). I decided to run from my home and to the Farmington Canal Linear Trail, which is 2.75 miles, then run an additional 2.25 miles on the trail, and back home. This way I would have run 10 of my 20 miles, be able to switch water bottles at home, and go out and repeat the first 10 miles. Clever, huh?! I decided the nice scenery and flatness of the trail would make up for having to twice go up and down a steep hill to get there. Also, I'd be passing by a water fountain twice, where I could refill my water bottle if necessary. In theory, "Yes"; in reality, "No!" Things were going as well as they could be for a 20 miler. I was feeling good, my fluid intake was good, and the weather was perfect. The second time around on the trail, I saw "roller blading, disco dancing, karaoke singing, linear trail lady." See my May 20th post for more about her. Also, left brain (April 21 post) was telling right brain that it was time to start thinking about walking. After all, I had run 14 miles at this point, I still had the steep uphill battle ahead for miles 18-19, and I should conserve my energy. I ignored left brain, and ran on. I had also forgotten at this point that there was an uphill incline leading to the "killer hill." So as I reached the steep uphill, I was running on reserve energy. I had taken the GU Gels at the 45, 1 1/2 hour, 2 1/4 and still had one left, so I sucked it down, and chugged some water. I attacked the hill, and made it to the top without too much of a struggle. I need to remember to use crosswalks, however, as I dodged a few cars without thinking clearly to cross the street and head home. I had less than a mile and a half to go. I felt the beginning of possible leg cramps in my left leg, and slowed down. I was wishing that I had taken the Endurolytes, as I've never had even a twinge of a cramp after taking then. Just as my Garmin beeped and signalled mile 19, my left leg went into major cramp mode. Damn, it hurt! I swore out loud, stopped, and grabbed and massaged it. I decided to walk the last mile, but quickly changed my mind as the one minute walk had decreased the pain. I resumed a slow jog, then felt well enough to run a normal pace. About a quarter mile from home, Garmin beeped for mile 20, and displayed a 10:08 split, which amazed me. I guess "No pain, no gain" in this case. Overall, it's Tuesday, my initial aches and pains are gone, and I have new dull pain in both my sartorius or adductor magnus muscles...I think! I'm going away for a day with my wife to Mohegan Sun Casino, so I'll catch up on your blogs soon. I hope everyone is doing well, meaning running pain free and enjoying the weather and hopefully getting some rest and relaxation.

4 comments:

lindsay said...

nice job on the 20! always feels good to put one of those in the bank. hope you win big at the casino!!

Meg Runs said...

Wow, great job on running your 20 and I appreciated the details on your fueling and hydration. I want to try the Hammer Sustained Energy Drink...sounds promising for me(I have some stomach issues).
Super post, thanks!

Katie said...

You are welcome to "stalk" my blog just as long as I am aloud to stalk yours! Wow... what an impressing run you had! I cant wait until I can take a 20 mile run (without dying first)! I hope you had a great get-a-way with your wife! Much deserved, I'm sure :)

Mel-2nd Chances said...

Great job on the 20!! I always like reading about what everyone does for nutrition as well :)