I have hit the peak of my training. I am now in the taper. Thank God!
On Friday, I did the longest run. 20 miles. Ouch.
I started the day with peanut butter, my food of choice before a run. Since it was twenty miles, I decided to have granola bar dipped in peanut butter for extra calories. I later learned this was a bad choice.
As usual, the first two miles were just HARD. They always are, I feel like I can't get my breathing regulated, and it seems to me with all the running I have been doing it would be easier to get started. Anyway, the weather was cooler which was nice, and I actually wore a top over my sportsbra. That only lasted about a mile and a half though. I had worn a bike jersey with a pocket in back, for my phone and sportbeans. I pulled it off and put it on a sign for a church- I figured no one would bother with it there!! At around 3 miles, I was running down Suber Mill road, where there is an old corn mill. There were also some horses in a pasture which made me smile. There were morning glories blooming all over the place and the air seemed to have a slight scent of cinnamon to it (which I love). I picked a beautiful magenta flower and put it into my hair clip- I decided that since this was a monumental day for me, I would celebrate it in style.
I ran a different route than usual- since it was 20 I wanted to try to do an out and back or a loop. I put a good chunk of the run on Buncombe road. I didn't realize that during the day there are a TON of 18 wheelers and dumptrucks on that road. NOT FUN. When I finished the run my chest and neck were gray from all the dust and exhaust.
Once I turned of of Buncombe, it was much nicer. This big chunk of the run was on backroads, including one of my favorite, Gibb Shoals Road. This is the road that has a lot of subdivisions, but tere are also big green pastures and cow farms. Hilly, but just the right amount. I tried to hit the hills better than usual. At 5 miles, Phil met me with a bottle of Gatorade. At ten miles, I was at my gym, where I picked up another bottle and used the restroom. Uh-oh- I mentioned the granola bar right? Well it gave me intestinal distress while I was running. Yup. Horrible.
I made my way down the road from the gym and my stomach really started bothering me. I was on a new road which was a really good hill- down the first half then straight up the second half. Now my legs and lungs were doing OK, but my stomach was really bothering me! I started getting cramps and thought I was going to poop myself! I ended up walking until the cramps went away. Then I would run until the cramps returned. At the end of this road, Phil and Jacob met me again, with another bottle and words of encouragement.
The rest of the "run" went like this- run til I thought I was going to go on myself, then walk til it went away. A couple times I thought I was going to have to run behind a bush!
When I got to mile 17, the blister on the back of my left heel popped open. This sent a searing pain through my foot. I felt like I could only tiptoe on that foot. I called Phil and told him and asked him to pick me up. He told me that I was only 3 miles from home, didn't I think I could make it that far? I said yes, I could, and I continued my pitiful shuffle. I did actually run on and off that last three miles, although anyone driving by would not have called that running! I was worried someone was going to pull over and ask if I needed a doctor!
I was thrilled once I got home, of course, and celebrated by climbing into a tub full of icewater. With ice cubes floating in it. UGH!! But I made it.
The total time for this suffer fest? 5 hours. Yes, 5 hours. It scares me that I won't make it across the bridge in time to finish my marathon! But all I can do is do my best. I have trained hard. I have lost weight and done the best I could. Now I just need to concentrate on doing my best and finishing!
And by the way, during all this time training for the marathon- my daddy has gone through his entire chemo regimen and is now officially in remission!!!