Sunday morning I defied all the odds and woke up really early and set out for my long run for the week. I had mapped out a 15 mile long route to do and then I would do a 5 mile race in Central Park. I figured getting cups of water at the end of the route was probably a good plan. I also knew that it would be best for me to finish the day with the race since I didn't think I'd really want to run too much after that.
The race started at 8:30, which meant that because I'm not the speediest runner, I wanted to get out the door around 5:30 in order to make sure I wouldn't feel too pressured to get to the race on time. I actually ended up starting a bit late, which of course made me nervous, but it worked out perfectly in the end.
The first part of my run was from our apartment to the Westside Path and then South to the bottom of the island. It was totally dark and pretty lonely out there while I was running. I saw about as many people as you could count on one hand that were exercising. There were some people who hadn't quite made it home from their Halloween celebrations, though! Really, the only company I had were the 4 rats I saw out and about. I learned that if you stomp your feet, they run away. That seems like a really important thing to know.
I have to say that normally when I run south I run to Chambers Street and then head back. Today I went further south and ran along the esplanade in Battery Park City. I'm not sure that was the right call since it was dark and I wasn't 100% sure where I was going or where to turn around, but it ended up being okay. I was a little bit nervous there since there were some Parks Department people patrolling the area, which made me wonder if it's a high crime area? I wouldn't have thought so, but the patrolling didn't do anything to make me feel more confident.
I knew that this run was pretty much the make it or break it day when it came down to nutrition for the marathon. I decided that I would do what I'm planning on doing for the marathon, which is to have water only and then take a Gu a miles 5, 10, 15 and 20. I skipped the last one, but had the 5, 10 and 15 mile Gus and I have to say that it worked perfectly. I pretty much stopped at every drinking fountain I saw and it worked out great.
The truth is that the whole run was great. The first 15 miles were awesome. I was sort-of wondering if part of that was due to the fact that it was dark and a little bit chilly and I knew I had to be done by a certain time for the race? Whatever it was, it was great. I ended up timing it almost perfectly because I snuck into my corral for the race at 8:28, for a race that was supposed to start at 8:30. I will say that NYRR is pretty darn good about starting on time, but they were running just a couple minutes late on Sunday. Which meant that I didn't cross the start line until 8:40. When I started running again, I wasn't overly enthused, but I pretty much just told myself to run to the next cup of water.
I got water at all the aid stations and walked for a few steps to drink my water instead of have it splash down the front of my shirt. That's pretty much my marathon plan as well. I knew that I was doing a pretty good job pacing myself in the race. I started out a bit slow and really, really picked it up towards the end. It was great to know that I could still have a tiny bit of a kick left after 20 miles!
All in all, I just kept thinking that I was wishing the marathon had been on Sunday instead of in three weeks. Although I think I'm ready to scale back on the running, I'm also now paranoid that maybe I peaked too early and wasted all my efforts in getting ready for the marathon.
Distance: 15.00 miles
Running #2 (Poland Spring Marathon Kick-Off Race)
Distance: 5.00 miles
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