|Twenty four miles on one bowl of oatmeal.|
Just this morning I finished what will probably be my last long run (24 miles on the treadmill) prior to my first race of the year, the Rat Race 50k. It felt good for having not run much in the last week due to work obligations and some family celebrations. I know a whole lot of people will disagree with my opinion, but it wasn’t that bad doing a long run on the treadmill. Especially since I have a pretty solid spotify playlist prepared just for such occasions. The other benefit of long runs on the treadmill is the ability to set the pace and stick to it mindlessly, which is what I had planned for this run. I ran the first 18 miles at my target race pace for the NJ Novo Nordisk Marathon, (8:30/mile) which would be under my marathon PR by less than a minute. After that I increased my pace slightly until the last 2 miles when I ran sub 8 minute miles. Being able to run 22 miles at my target pace without feeling like I was struggling at all and then being able to pick up my pace a bit at the end is a huge confidence booster for my PR goal at the NJ marathon. However, I still have my doubts about whether I’ll actually pull it off. Not because I don’t think the fitness or ability will be there, but because the Hyner 50k is the weekend before. And not just because the Hyner is a tough 50k with some big climbs, but because now that I’m committed to running the PA Triple Crown Series all three of those races (which begin with Hyner 50k) are my “A” races for the year. This means that I intend to not hold anything back at Hyner and if it goes well and there’s nothing left in the tank at the finish, I likely won’t be fully recovered after one week when I go for the marathon PR. Whether I blame poor planning or just myself for making stupid decisions doesn’t really matter because I’m not changing my plans regardless of how dumb they may be. The way I see it is if I do run a good time at Hyner and still hit my marathon PR goal it will just be that much more impressive. Additionally, it will likely motivate me to go for another marathon PR soon after in hopes that I could surely run a better time on fresh legs.
Before I wrap this up, just a side note, or more so a bit of a humorous story. One of the earlier mentioned family celebrations was a trip to Great Wolf Lodge in the Poconos of PA. While this trip took some time away from what would have been dedicated training time, I still got on a treadmill to run at the Great Wolf Lodge resort. While it wasn’t a great work out or run, it was a pretty entertaining one. The fitness room is small even by hotel fitness room standards. And one of the three walls is made of glass windows along a busy hallway. This hallway is a pretty high traffic area between the water park, arcade, and a wing of the hotel rooms. Never before have I had more ice cream eating children stopping to stare at me running on a treadmill than during this treadmill run at Great Wolf Lodge. I’m not complaining about this. I actually found it pretty humorous at the time and still do. It was somewhat surreal as I kind of felt like I was an attraction at the resort with all of the attention I was getting. If you’re ever at a Great Wolf Lodge don’t totally blow off your work out if the weather is crappy, you’re slightly drunk, or just feeling exhausted. Find the fitness room and run some miles on the treadmill. It will entertain the kids roaming the halls and if you’re like me you’ll get a few chuckles from their fascination.
March 2, 2019