Sunday, September 09, 2007

My 15 Mile 18 Miler and Back on the Road Again

I set out today for an 18 miler - thinking it would be a good step between last week's 16 miles and next week's 21 miler. But alas, it was not to be.

I was pretty tired from the previous week of traveling - and stayed in bed on Saturday morning until 10:30 am! I was kind of dragging the entire day. I wasn't sure how I would feel for the run today. For today's run, I wanted to make sure I got out early enough, so I planned to be running by 6:30 am (I cannot bring my self to run as early as Susan...too dark). My husband, who is training for the Walt Disney World Marathon was due to run 8 miles, so I decided I would run my first 10, then swing by the house and we would do the next 8 together.

I started my run with this week's Phedip to get me through the first hour. The run was feeling pretty good - and I was excited that my total pace was staying under 12 min/mi. But by mile 4, my heart rate was starting to climb - a sure sign that I was starting to wear down. Stubbornly, I worked to maintain my sub 12 min/mi pace, and managed to do so for those first 10 miles. But by the time I got back to my house - I was already pretty spent. My clothes were drenched with sweat, so I used the stop to change into some dry running clothes. I also shed the Camel Bak for my Fuel belt, figuring it would be lighter to carry. I warned my husband I was moving pretty slow - he was happy to go slow and take it easy.

It didn't take long (less than a mile) for me to realize that not only was I not going to finish 18 - I was going to be lucky to finish even 15. I couldn't even maintain a slow run for 2 min with a 1 min walk with my husband. I finally told him to go on ahead without me, and that I would hook up with him while he was on his return trip. Then instead of running by time, I used my heartrate as my guide to when to walk and when to run.

My MHR is 182 bpm and the top of my aerobic zone is 156 bpm. My running strategy was to run until my heart rate passed 171 bpm, then walk until it was back down to at most 158 bpm. My heart still got the work out (in fact, was anaerobic) and I didn't over exert myself. I made it back to the house after finishing a total of 15 miles. My pace in the last 2 miles was over 14 min/mi but my overall pace for the entire run was 12:35 min/mi. Not too bad.

I don't feel bad that I didn't finish 18 - it just wasn't to be. I would rather hold back and make it through next week's run. The key will be to get plenty of rest this week - probably a pretty tall order given that I am back on the road again, in yet another hotel. There is a nice neighborhood I can run in not far from here so I have the Garmin along in case I can get out for a run before dark (or after sunup). There is also a 24 hours exercise room - I will need to see what the treadmill limit is there....


Petraruns said...

Well done for getting the 15 in Chris - it sounds like the conditions and your condition were not perfect so I think you did really well getting out there for 15. You were wise not to push yourself too far - you've got to leave some juice in the box. Good luck with all the travelling - do what you can and don't beat yourself up for the rest. The rest of our non-running lives can be REALLY big sometimes..

Susan said...

I think, all things considered, you did an EXCELLENT JOB! Pushing through to 15 is admirable when you feel like poo -- in my opinion!

Do rest. That is the ticket!

And 12:35 -- I'd murder for that these days! :)

Marathon Maritza said...

Great job pushing all the way to 15, Chris, sounds like a test of will.

Just wanted to stop by and tell you how much I enjoy your Running Adventures podcast and TEM - I actually just called in with my first update for it!

Take care during your travel!

ShirleyPerly said...

You did the right thing. Pushing yourself when you're overly fatigued often results in poor running form which can lead to an injury. It's not worth it, IMO.

Hope you get some rest before next weekend. Try starting out slower, say, a 13:00 pace. I often do my long runs at a pace that's 1-2 minutes slower than my marathon goal pace, esp. when it's hot out.

lizzie lee said...

Hi Chris. I am happy reading what common mortal runners do, instead of what Elite and Kenyans do.

I got so upset one day when somebody told me, after my longest run ever (10 miles): 12min/mile? That's so slow...

And that day I was so happy that I could run 10 miles!!!!!!!

I also found really nice running during my trips. I traveled a lot between Arlington, VA; Long Beach, CA; and Seattle area (home). I understand you live in Vienna? Maybe one day that we have to do a long run, and I am in VA, you can run towards Arlington and me towards Vienna, and meet mid-way and have a cup of coffee! or a BIG GLASS OF WATER. That'll be fun!!!!!!!!

Anyway, nice checking your blog. Take care

Maddy said...

1. Travelling is hard

2. 15 miles is better than none at all

3. Be proud of your run.

4. Have a great week in Virgina and rest up for your long long run.