One Step Closer to the Marathon

This morning I took on my longest training run of 23 miles and finished it strong. It’s amazing and awesome how far I’ve come since starting my Galloway marathon training back in June. I feel as though I’m a better and smarter runner now.

23 miles done with a smile still on my face 🙂

This morning, I woke up before 2:30am to get going for my 3:30am run. I had some stomach issues right off the bat and began to get concerned that I wouldn’t be able to run at all. Thankfully, after taking something, my stomach calmed down enough for me to get dressed. I was out the door by 3am, a little later than I would have liked, but I knew I’d be okay with time (as I had to pick up ice and set up water/gatorade before I headed out to run).

Once at the school, I set up the water and all and at 3:30am, we were off and running. There were three of us starting off this early and we would be running 8 miles then heading back to the school to pick up the other runners at a quarter to 6am.

We did 30 second run intervals followed by a 1 minute walk. I thought this was a good way to start things off since I knew once we met up with the shorter mileage folks, it would be more difficult to keep the pace down. I was feeling pretty good, just a bit tired in the legs by mile 5. When we reached the school at 5:45am, I was still feeling pretty good overall.

With the addition of the “new” group, there were about a dozen of us at this point. We switched to 1:1 intervals and headed to a water stop 3 miles away. Things went pretty smoothly from here and I was feeling good. We then had a bit of a drizzling rain start which went away just about as quickly as it came.

At the water stop, we kind of split up. Some of the runners headed back to the school, while the rest of us continued onward. I then ran with some of the pack going down to 30 second runs to 30 second walks. This would be the interval we would stay with for a few more miles before finally going to 20 second runs to 40 second walks.

Again, the rain came down, this time a bit heavier than I would have liked, but it wasn’t a downpour, so that was a plus in my mind. The rain calmed again, but never completely went away as I finished up with a bit of a drizzle lingering a bit.

On this run, I noticed quite a difference from my 20-miler a few weeks ago. I felt a lot stronger and wasn’t experiencing the “lead legs” that I felt during the previous long run. I contribute the difference this time not only to getting the 20 mile run done, but to the compression sleeves I wore on this run. I think that helped my legs this time around. And, I added a couple of Ibuprofen around mile 12 today after a recommendation from one of my group leaders about using it.

I finished this run strong and felt as though I could have run more even though I was feeling it all over (especially my right foot). Made me feel so accomplished and really start to see that I can in fact do a marathon in a couple of months (I’m doing the 26.2 with Donna in February).

I felt like a strong woman this morning.


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