Tomorrow I am doing THE long run of my marathon training.
More planning has been put into this training run than many of the races I have run!
First of all, it will take me close to 4 hours to run this distance. Finding 4 consecutive hours on my schedule during the next few days has been tough. This weekend there are special holidays (Shemini Atzeret and Simchat Torah) so I'm going to synagogue both Saturday and Sunday. It is my 20th High School reunion on Saturday night - so I really did not want to run this on Saturday morning and then be dead tired on Saturday night.
I have some vacation days to burn at work, so I decided to take tomorrow off. Excellent! I can run on my day off, right? Well...my older son has a half day due to the holidays - which means there is less than 3 hours between the time I drop my younger son off at school at 9:15am and when I would need to pick my older son up at noon. UGH!!! I coordinated to have my older son go home with a friend until my wife can pick him up later so I can get my run in. Go figure, I'm taking the day off and don't have time to pick up the kids. Did I mention how much I love my wife....
Next I needed to find a route. 22 miles is a lot of ground to cover. I also want some change of scenery so I'm not bored to tears. I have decided to connect the CCT trail to the Rock Creek Park trail route that the Parks Half Marathon is run on. I'll park at or near the Rockville Metro, take the Metro downtown to either Dupont Circle or Farragut North, and start running from there towards Georgetown to pick up the CCT trail (hopefully about a mile). I think it is about 8 miles up the trail to Bethesda and then another 13 miles to the Rockville Metro station if I follow the Parks Half Marathon route. There's 22 miles for ya!
Another cool thing about this training run is that I'll be running it at about the same time of day that I'll be running the NY Marathon. Since I need to drop my son off at nursery school, I probably won't get downtown until a little after 10am. This will be good for me since I'm so used to running at 6am...I need some more practice running later in the day.
This run will also give me a good chance to practice nutrition and hydration. Since I'm running at the same time of day, I can simulate what I will eat on race day before the run and during the run. I need to give this a little more thought this afternoon and evening so I have a plan tomorrow morning.
I'm usually not nervous or anxious for a training run, but this had so much planning going into it that I'm a bit jittery. Perhaps that's also good practice???