At 3:50am, I hit snooze on my alarm but I didn't really need to. I was ready to be up. I had been dreaming about running all night. I think writing my last post and talking to running friends really got into my subconscious and produced amazing, uplifting, confidence-building dreams.
Matt drank the last of the coffee and because we went out for Halloween, I didn't think to buy more until it was too late. Oh well, I thought. My GIANT BOX of Caramel Macchiato Gu will have to do. And it did. I had a Gu thirty minutes before starting and ate a poptart in the car on the way to meet Adria.
|Archie is disappointed that he can't partake in this glorious coffee substitute.|
Adria is running the Space Coast, too, so she met me for the full 20. She is usually a speed demon, easily breaking two hours in a half, so while she did push me a bit for our first ten miles, it wasn't too much. She kept me accountable for how I usually slack on my paces. I could talk easily the entire run, so I knew the faster pace was acceptable, even if my legs felt a little uncomfortable.
|I think the fast pace of this part of the run explains my struggle toward the end (besides, you know, it being 20 miles). But front-loading the run also meant my overall pace was faster!|
The first ten miles flew by. We had amazing weather; it was 59 when we began at 4:30. The route was familiar and quiet. It felt...easy. My hips hurt a little around mile seven but I pushed through, knowing I'd have some recovery time at mile 10.
Halfway through we stopped back at our cars for a food/drink/bathroom break. (I had a second CM Gu. I really didn't feel I needed anything before mile 10 even though originally I'd planned to stop at 7 to eat. The two Gus were enough to keep me going the entire 20!) We also picked up Tracey, who is training for a half and wanted to run the last ten with us.
We started back out (it had warmed up a bit to a lovely 62 degrees). My legs were tired, but I thought back on my 10-mile race and how tired my legs were then, and I knew I could push through it. Adria ended up pushing her pace and Tracey and I stuck together; we all paused at the park for a quick drink around mile 17.
|There goes Adria, leaving us in her dust!|
I slowed down significantly around mile 18, but when I had just one mile to go, I picked it up again.
I told Tracey how amazed I felt...That I, someone who isn't a natural runner, could complete these 20 miles. That I now knew, barring any injuries or race-day issues, I would complete my marathon.
It's been a pipe dream for so long, but it's never been something I was confident I could complete.
But now I am.
The run itself took us about 3:40, but including the stops at the cars and park, we were out for just about four hours. Will I be adjusting my goals for the race accordingly? Probably not. It's my first marathon, after all, and I'd like to keep my goals cautious.
|I seriously don't think I could have finished this without them!|
I'm having some pain in the tops of my feet and my lower back, so I know I need to double up on my core work this month and work on strengthening my ankles, too. I'm hoping this is normal soreness and not injury-pain, but either way I plan to rest for the next couple days, so I'm sure it will resolve itself.
The bottom line here is that I RAN 20 MILES AND IT WASN'T HORRIBLE AND I EVEN ENJOYED IT AND OMG I THINK I'LL ACTUALLY SUCCEED AND RUN MY MARATHON ON NOVEMBER 30!!!!
|My reward: a homemade GF cupcake and playing blog catch-up.|
Thank you all for your encouragement...your words were in my head during my run and you all helped me accomplish something truly amazing today. The success of this run has really boosted my confidence and was the perfect start to November!
How did you feel the first time you accomplished a goal you never thought you could?