Friday, February 24, 2012

Nine Miles and a Congratulations From Paula Radcliff!

Run: 9 Miles, Long Run
Location: Astoria Riverwalk (a lot of it!)
Run Time (if applicable): 1:18:03, 8:39 splits
Run Start: 8:05 am
Temperature: 42 degrees
Weather: Cloudy


I will admit, all week this run stared back at me in my planner and I was intimidated! "Long Run-9 Miles" sounded painful, it sounded hard. It scared me to think I could hurt myself...was I ready? Was it "too much, too fast"? 

But all in all, if I want to run a marathon, I have to give this training plan a chance.  After all Hal Higdon knows his stuff! So I went into it with Jeff Galloway in my head once more..."go slower, give yourself permission to walk when needed". It was just about finishing the distance, not about speed. Okay.

The sun peaked out this morning and I was afraid to get false hope because the weather called for rain. So I dressed for rain just in case...and I wore a hat. I was not going to let the weather be an excuse for not finishing this important run. I felt blessed that I did not get rained on. 

Miles 1-3 were far east on the Riverwalk, past Pier 39, where the trail becomes quite rustic along the old railroad tracks. I enjoy this area. From the beginning my goal was to keep my pace "gentle" and to really be aware of how my joint were feeling so I did not push it too hard. 

Around mile 4 I got warm so I had to run with my coat tied around my waist. It wasn't the best, but it wasn't bad either. I kept thinking of this running jacket that I would LOVE from Lulumon... And at mile 4.5 I loved hearing the Nike+ tell me I was at the halfway point! 

Then around mile 7 the wind picked up and I started to feel cold so I put my jacket back on (exciting news, right?!?). Only two miles left! 

Then the Nike+ notified me when I had 400 meters left, 300 meters left, 200, then 100. That was pretty cool! But the best part was the personal congratulatory message I received upon completion! 

"This is Paula Radcliff. Congratulations on your longest workout yet!" That was so awesome! I felt like she was welcoming me into a secret club or something :)

Bummer was that I did not map my course very well and I had parked about 2 miles from my ending point. No, I don't count that part, I will still call this a 9 mile run. But those two miles were just a bit too much. I had started to cool down too much and my legs were just tired (understandably). I made myself stretch along the way to the car.

Hydration: I drank two tall glasses of water before bed, then one right after my morning cup of coffee. I had debated whether I should run with an amphipod bottle. I didn't end up doing it though, they drive me nuts. Apparently I did just fine without it because I did not feel any symptoms of dehydration. I guzzled down a bottle of Propel Zero right off the bat as I cranked the heat in my car. Then I showered, drank my chocolate protein shake (yum!) and went about my day. 

I'm pleased with how my body handled the run. I expected a lot of aches and pains. My left lower leg was feeling some shin pain but overall not too bad. At about mile 8 I started to feel the strain in my knees. But after I stopped any discomfort did as well. I will do plenty of stretching and rolling tonight, as well as re-hydrating and maybe I will reward myself with a killer bubble bath :)

And one last interesting thought...the marathon will be today's run times roughly 3!! 

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