I just wanted to share my experience about this distance.
I have never run this far before. I actually never thought I would. Take for instance 2 years ago when I started running, the thought of doing anything more than a 5K seemed seriously impossible. My goal back then was to complete that distance and even that seemed super hard.
This is where I truly believe that whatever we set our minds to do and whatever we set our goals to do is what we will end up achieving as long as we do not loose site of that goal.
Many of you have made goals in your life, some you have achieved and some you simply forgotten or put aside. Why? Because sometimes life happens and you are unable to do what you have set. I believe that you must write down your goal, tell several people who care about your goal, write a plan and then start acting on it.
My ultimate goal right now is to complete a marathon and not only finish it, but to do it in a way that I’m not hurting for days or weeks later. I first registered for this back on May 6th. It was on a whim because I was on a serious runner’s high from the Half Marathon I had just completed the day before. The next day I freaked out and couldn’t believe what I had just registered for.
So then I had to make a serious plan for such an event. I booked the hotel my family and I would stay in. That felt like enough, but it wasn’t. I then wrote out a huge calendar of training miles and how I felt I would train. I then talked to several people that have completed multiple marathons. The advice I kept getting over and over was to do as many 20 milers and longer that I could thus making the day of the marathon easier on my legs because they would be used to the long distance.
So this now brings me to my 17.08 miler. I knew all week that I needed to do it on Thursday because on Saturday of that week I would be out of town. I also knew that with working at 7:45a.m. and being the slow runner that I am, that I would have to get up at a horrible early hour to complete this. I set the alarm for 3:55a.m. however my body woke me at 3:35a.m. and so I began to prepare for the run. I prepared by body gliding every part that might rub, drinking more water, eating half a banana, setting the Garmin GPS watch to look for satellites so I could track my distance and then I left. I didn’t end up leaving until 4:20 a.m. Why it took me so long to get ready I really don’t know.
So I left and I have to say it was a very enjoyable run. I decided to visit every street I could. I turned down every Court, Street, Avenue, Lane, etc. that I could find. At mile 3ish I felt the urge to pee badly. Thank goodness at the end of the street it was a field and the field went way back behind houses with lots of trees. I did my business in the nearly dark world. Thank goodness for my awesome squatting skills and the babywipes I had packed along with an extra zip lock bag to put the used baby wipes. If this is TMI by this point then you might as well just stop reading.
Mile 4 and 5 went well until I had that urge again. What was wrong with me? Thankfully I found a port-a-pottie by a new construction home. I used it and was even happier to find it fully stocked with TP!
I did a long loop and around mile 11 I used that same pottie again. During this last loop I saw 11 deer. Deer were something I never had the opportunity to see while running. I’ve seen a lot of bunnies, squirrels and birds, but never deer so to see 11 was amazing. Such a beautiful sight.
By mile 12ish, I came back to the spot where I had set a water to drink. The water was still cold and super refreshing. I filled up my side water that I wear on my hip and went on my way.
I did a short loop of 3 miles, total of 15ish and was back to where my water was. The water was gone. I was confused as my Gu packet was still there, but no water.
I looked across the street to see an older lady with a grocery bag and it looked like she was picking up trash.
I yelled across the street at her saying, “Did you happen to pick up a water that was right here?” She said, “Yes” Then I said in a very NOT NICE tone, “That water was purposely put there by me. I just ran 15 miles and I really needed it.” Then I ran away. I was ticked.
I ran home and got some water, then completed the last mile until I had to return home to stretch shower and go to work.
I made the mistake of not having enough time to stretch. I rushed a few stretches, showered way too quickly and then drove off to work. As a result of this I was hurting all day long, into the night, then I hurt all day the next day and into the next night. It wasn’t until Saturday morning that I began to feel better. I thought I had seriously injured myself, but really all it came down to was muscle tightness.
On June 30th I have scheduled to do 19-20 miles! I’m ready.