Saturday, March 15, 2008

Saturday Morning Long Run

Yesterday's Total Calorie Intake:  2225

This morning's plan was to wake up early and do a 17.2 mile out-and-back/loop from my neighborhood to the Rockville Millennium Trail and back.  The training plan calls for a 16 mile run, but this seemed like a good course that I'm familiar with - so I decided to do the extra 1.2 miles.

Since we had to leave to go to synagogue around 10am, I needed to be home around 9am.  I figured this run would take me about 3 hours and 15 minutes, so I needed to get out the door by 5:45am.  5:45am is exactly when I got out of the house - and 3:15:10 was my time...not too bad on the planning side!

My plan was to try to keep my heart rate under 150 for as long as possible - staying at a nice even pace for the entire run.  I decided to pick some mellower music to help out with this.  I had a collection of Indigo Girls, Joni Mitchell, Crosby, Stills and Nash, Rufus Wainright and Don MacLean among others.

It worked for most of the run - my average heart rate was 153.  I know that towards the end of the run my heart rate was in the low 160s, so I did a good job regulating my pace at the beginning of the run.  I seem to have a problem regulating my speed when going up a gradual incline...I have a tendency to keep my normal pace which sends my heart rate up.  On bigger hills, I slow down more, but on the gradual hills I don't do such a good job slowing down.  I'm going to have to work on this before the marathon.  It will actually help me for all races in the future - not just the marathon.

I ran pretty much the entire 3 hours, 15 minutes and 10 seconds.  There were a few times I had to stop.  Just as I was getting onto the Millennium Trail, I had a pebble in my shoe, so I stopped, took my shoe off and got it out.  On the Millennium Trail, there are only two trash cans so I was going to take my GUs a little before each of them so I could throw the empty packets in the trash cans.  However, the first trash can caught me by surprise, so I stopped for a few seconds to do my GU shot and take a drink.  There was also one traffic light that I had to stop at for about 1 minute as cars were turning - I had good luck with all the other traffic lights (of course, there's not too many cars on the road between 5:45am and 9am on Saturday morning!).

About 13-14 miles through the run I still felt great!  I was thinking, "heck, there's nothing to this...once I get started I can keep on going forever."  However, around mile 15 my legs started to feel sore.  It didn't stop me from finishing out the last 2 miles, but those two miles were not easy.

My hydration/fueling plan for today - I ate a chewy granola bar before the run and brought 3 GU packets - the plan was to take one at around each hour into my run (or at the trash cans on the Millennium Trail, which happened to coincide pretty nicely with hours 1 and 2!).  I added the 3rd water bottle to my AmphiPod RunLite, so I had 24 oz of water with me.  The water belt with three water bottles was a little strange at first, but I got used to it pretty quickly.  I rationed it out the water pretty well, but I think I would have drank more if I had more.

After I got home, I took a quick warm shower and then a cold bath (no ice - I whimped out).  This supposedly helps with inflammation and to bring your core temperature back down quicker.

So this was my longest run - 17.2 miles - and my most weekly mileage - 34.3 miles!


tootie said...

Congrats on your long run!

By the way, is there a flavor of GU that you recommend? I haven't bought any yet, but I know I'll need it later in my training for the long runs. Thanks!

Zia :-) said...

Hi Mike, I'm a little behind on your blog so I just saw this. 17 miles?? That is SO AWESOME! I am doing 11 this weekend with my running group. The 1/2 we are doing next month has a huge hill in it so we are taking a road trip Saturday for our run so we can practice the huge hill in our 1/2 marathon course. Wish me luck!!