The miles are piling up lately – no wonder since I kicked off my marathon training for the Little Rock Marathon two weeks ago. According to my Nike Plus account dashboard I ran over 160 miles in the last 30 days. That number would be even higher if I would have skipped the Kosama workouts and would have went for a run instead. Internally I count each Kosama workout as an equivalent of a 5 mile run, but let’s not go there. 160 miles in the last 30 days is way more than I had expected. Saturday was my long run day and I had hoped to use the warmer weather midday to get out, but it was dark by the time I was ready for my run due to some work related stuff going on.
I had run 14 miles the weekend before and my minimum goal for this Saturday was 12 miles, but preferably match what I had run the weekend before. Last weekend though I ran a fairly flat course along the South Platte River towards downtown Denver coming from the South. This time I started my run from home and that’s where hills are a given on any run. There is simply no way to avoid hills from where I live. The only choice I have is to get most of the hills done early on or face some grueling up-hills on the last 3 to 4 miles of my run. I decided to get most of the hills done early on and then at least have only minor hills to face towards the end of the run. Early on in each of my marathon trainings hills are the enemy and it was no different this time around. I paid the toll of taking the early hills and my overall pace was a bit slower for the entire run. I knew this would happen and so it did not bother me too much. I know that these hills will make me stronger and I will reap the benefits when race day comes.
I ran for 15 miles with an average pace of 9.30 minutes per mile. This pace is probably perfect from a training perspective since your long runs are supposed to be slower anyway. I definitely felt the effort on this run and I was happy when I saw my house coming closer in the distance. I had started to get cold outside, it was dark, and the thought of warming up and relaxing near the fireplace was comforting and motivating at the same time. I had three smaller breaks during my run. As mentioned it was dark and I used the breaks to refuel with Gatorade Chews and to drink some Gatorade, too. This is training and there is no need to force something in the dark that is not necessary. Taking some strategic breaks does not affect the results of such a long run anyway.
At home I refueled with Lactose-free Chocolate milk from fairlife and SOS Rehydrate (read my review here). I also had a banana to eat, but as always I usually cannot stand any food after a long run and rather use liquid refueling options like Chocolate Milk. The fairlife lactose-free chocolate milk offers 13 grams of protein and 13 grams of carbs per serving size (which is one cup). Well, let’s say it this way – I did not stop after having one cup because that stuff tastes so awesome and allows me to refuel at the same time. Last year I had tried some recovery shakes from Gatorade, but they tasted horrible and since then I discovered fairlife chocolate milk so that I can ignore the Gatorade recovery drinks.
Here is the mileage for the last week. I am also including one Kosama workout in that list. Not included are lots of crunches, high planks, and pushups for core and back exercises which I randomly do here and there through-out a week.
12/08 = 5.25 miles
12/09 = Kosama Workout
12/10 = 7.03 miles
12/11 = 7.19 miles
12/12 = 7.17 miles
12/13 = 15.02 miles
Interesting side note: On Saturday’s long run my Nike Plus GPS Watch almost ran out of battery even though it was fully charged when I left. I hope this was a one-off and it will not happen again. It would suck having to replace my GPS watch just 16 months.
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