74 days until the 2017 TCS NYC Marathon. It’s hard to believe that we are just over two months away now. This past weekend, I ran my 20 mile training run, which means just two more long runs to go before I hit taper town!
On Saturday morning, I started at 3:30am with two of my running friends. It’s usually about the 20-miler that we start running that early. Part of me dislikes the crazy early time, but it also helps us finish before it gets too sunny outside. It’s already humid as heck even at that time in Florida, and Saturday was certainly no exception.
The three of us did 8 miles in Baldwin Park before heading back to the school where we had more runners starting at 6am. Despite hot hot and sweaty I was, I felt pretty good. Again, I was using Generation UCAN on the run. I drank a bottle on my drive to the run, and then had two other bottles mixed and ready. I filled my Fitletic belt before heading out for the 8 miles, and that more than got me through that portion of the run.
Upon returning back to the school where we meet up, I refilled my bottle with more UCAN and then went back out for the remaining 12 miles. I also had a UCAN snack bar in my belt as well as Salt Stick capsules. Since I wasn’t sure the UCAN would last me the full 12 miles, I did have a Huma Gel packet in there as well, just in case. Though, I knew that would be at the end if I needed anything additional, since it would take away any further benefits of the UCAN in my system.
During that second portion of the run, I was feeling pretty good. We kept a pretty good pace too, averaging around 15:39 per mile. Considering the heat and all, I was happy with that since I technically should have been in the 16s per mile. Looking back later at my 2015 NYC Marathon training, I kept a much better overall pace on this 20-miler than I did with that one. This time around, my overall pace was 15:49, compared to 17:15 back in 2015.
I just felt good on this run, just wet with sweat. Ha! But, I feel like the training is going well, and it’s showing in my runs this time around. It wasn’t until the last 5k or thereabouts that I felt some tightness/soreness in my quads and hamstring areas. It always becomes mental when that happens, so I just pushed myself to keep chugging along. My buddy, Jenny, who was also running 20 miles with me, seemed to feel it a bit more than I did. But, I wouldn’t let her stop, I know how hard a long training run can be, and I was so proud of her when she pushed and got it done.
When we both got back to the school where our cars were, it’s such a great feeling. We hit that big 20 miles and were rewarded with iced towels, ice-cold water and ice pops. It always feels amazing to know that you accomplish such a huge run like that. Slipping on my Oofos sandals, and mixing up my Vega Recovery Accelerator, I thought about race day.
On this training run, I avoided the horrid rash I experienced on both my 14 & 17 mile runs. This time, I put on some Gold Bond powder before my compression calf sleeves, so I think that helped. There was a couple slightly red spots, but I considered it a win after how bad my previous two long runs were with the heat rash.
Also, unfortunately, despite using my favorite 2Toms BlisterShield, I did get one blister on my left foot. It was in the same area that I got the blister on my 14-miler, so I think it’s now a hot spot for me. Next time, I plan to use more SportShield on that particular area before I put my socks on with the BlisterShield. Despite the one blister, I consider the BlisterShield a complete must-have. I can’t imagine how many blisters or chafing issues I might have without it.
Now, I’ve got three weekends of lower mileage runs before my 23-miler. That long run is scheduled for September 16th. I have a 6 mile run on both August 26 and September 2. Then, a 10 mile run on September 9. Here’s to some ‘shorter’ long runs! 🙂
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