Friday, September 14, 2012

A very rainy 20-miler

Earlier this week, when I checked my marathon schedule, it said 20 miles this Friday (today). I was surprised, because I could have sworn it was 18! So I spent all week nervous about my long (long, long) run today. Last night, I got a text from Renee, and low and behold, she was running 20 miles today too!

I wish I ran at her pace, because I would have LOVED some company on a 3 1/2 hour run, but she's much faster than me. So I knew I'd be running alone this time. I've only run this far twice before, so I was super nervous about it. Last night, I plugged in my Garmin to charge, plugged in my iPod, laid out my running clothes, filled my water bottle and stuck it in the fridge--got everything ready so the morning wouldn't be hectic.

When I woke up, I could hear the patter of rain on the windows. Bummer.
It certainly didn't look like it was going to let up, either. But because I had such a hard time getting in my long run on Monday (and therefore, didn't end up doing it), I had to get it done today. It wasn't an option to put it off any longer.

I mapped out a different route today, because I was hoping I'd run into Renee a couple of times, and the new scenery would hopefully make it go by faster. I grabbed an extra shirt and pair of socks to throw in the car, in case the rain really didn't let up. I drove to the public parking lot where I was going to do three out-and-backs from my car--six miles, then eight miles in the opposite direction, then six miles.

I sat in the car for a couple of minutes, really not wanting to get out. The rain wasn't just a drizzle; it was coming down pretty hard. Finally, I got out and started running. The first two miles was along a busy road (I was on the sidewalk). Then I cut across to go two miles around a large park. It was completely empty, which was unusual (and totally creepy). The path is gravel, and it goes right up against the woods, and then cuts across by some soccer fields, and then goes around a pond, and then goes back out to the busy road.

I was really nervous to be there all alone, because if a creeper pulled into the park, I would be trapped in the back near the woods, basically. Thankfully, all the creepers were hiding from the rain this morning, and I didn't run into anyone. The rain was a total downpour the entire time I was at the park. Renee sent me a text when I was 3.5 miles in and said she was just heading out.

My iPod headphones were soaking wet and they stopped working, so I put them in my pocket. Normally, I don't use my iPod unless I'm doing a really long run, and usually then I only use it for the first half or so. But today, I was looking forward to listening to a podcast, and the headphones quit working. I stopped at the car at mile six in order to throw my iPod in there, and also to see if I had a plastic bag to wrap my phone with. Thankfully, there was a plastic grocery bag in the car, so I tore off a big chunk of it and wrapped my phone before putting it back in my little belt pouch.

I started the eight-mile out-and-back from the car, which went in the opposite direction, through the State Park, and back. At mile nine, I ate my first GU. I was starting to feel kind of sluggish, so I hoped it would pick me up a little. The State Park is extremely boring to run (the entire trail looks the same), so I wanted to get it done. I worked on drinking my Gatorade so that I could refill when I got back to the car.

I didn't run into a single soul in the park, which is unusual. But it was still raining, of course, so naturally everyone was inside! When I got back to the car, I HAD to change my socks. My feet were totally soaked, and I could even hear a "squish" noise with each step I took. So I refilled my water bottle, and took of my sopping wet socks. My feet were all wrinkled from being so wet:
I put on my dry socks, and tried to wipe out the inside of my shoes with a towel--I wished I had brought a change of shoes, too, but I had to make-do with the wet ones. I felt MUCH better once I changed socks. My hips and knees were starting to feel a little achy, and I really wanted to call it quits. Renee sent me a text then, saying she was done with 10 miles. I ate my other GU and headed out for the final six-mile leg of my 20-miler, which was the same route as the first leg.

A mile and a half later, I ran into Renee. I could see her pink Women Rock MN jacket coming toward me. She was all perky and feeling great at that point--she asked how far I'd gone, and I said 15.6. She said she had gone 15.3... so she was CRUISING. She said her pace was 8:48/mi. That's super fast for doing a 20-mile run. We chatted for a minute, then headed off in opposite directions.

When I got to the park, I was relieved to be running on the gravel--it was much softer than the concrete sidewalks and the asphalt trail through the State Park. My legs didn't feel so achy when I was running on the gravel, but I still had to stop and stretch my legs a couple of times.

Finally... FINALLY... the car was in sight! I picked up the pace the last mile a little, even though my legs were super tired, and was so relieved to make it back to the car.
I was really happy with my 10:26/mi overall pace! My pace has stayed consistent for all of my long runs--I expected to get slower and slower as the mileage picked up. But, despite the rain, I am loving the cooler weather! I was actually a little cold today! My splits:
I was very excited to plug my run into Weight Watchers when I got home, to see how many activity points I earned:
I earned 38 PointsPlus for that! Which is good, because I had already gone through 25 by lunch time--I had to count the PP in the GU and Gatorade, and I ate a bigger breakfast to prepare for my run. ALSO--can you believe that wine is 4 frickin' points for a 5 oz glass?! That's just not fair!

Speaking of WW, I'm actually kind of liking the program this time around. It's nice to do something different. And I hate to admit it, but I think paying the money for the online program has kept me on track ;)  I so badly wanted to binge yesterday, but I kept thinking about the money I paid to try this program, so I didn't do it. If there is one thing I can't stand, it's wasting perfectly good money! ;)


The winner of the giveaway for Pete Thomas's book, "Lose It Fast, Lose It Forever" is:
Congrats Karen!! Please send me an e-mail at SlimKatie (at) runsforcookies (dot) com within 24 hours with your full name and shipping address, so I can pass it along to the publisher. I hope you enjoy the book as much as I did!

32 comments:

  1. Katie girl, you are one dedicated runner!!! I cant even comprehend 20 miles, alone, in the rain!! My 18 miler(my longest thus far) is tomorrow...but I run with a training group. I dont think I could push myself out the door on a rainy day to do 20 miles!!! I hate having to count my GU/gatorade calories too....not fair! I have even gained 7 lbs since I began training for the marathon...total craziness!!! -Deb from TN

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  2. Good for you girl! Way to rock that run and in the rain...pshht, dedication!!

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  3. I'm really impressed with your long run paces. I keep getting slower, and slower, and slower. I'd be happy to see ONE mile at the average pace you put out today. You're going to kill the marathon at Detroit. Maybe I'll see you at the start before you take off!!

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  4. Awesome job running in the rain! I backed out of my 5 miler on Wed because of rain. You are an inspiration! I will think of you on my 10 mile run tomorrow and remember if you can trek through 20 miles in the rain, I can definitely suck it up for half of that!!

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  5. I'm so looking forward to running in the cooler weather as well! I'm determined to stick with running throughout the winter and I even bought a running jacket yesterday :)

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  6. I have started running this week, and today was my day off. Thank goodness because it rained all morning. We drove up to the Henry Ford museum to see the Titanic Exhibit, since my son didn't have school today. Can't imagine you running in that weather!

    Thanks for posting all of your inspiration. I am working towards a 5K at the end of October!

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  7. Look at you KILLING IT! I would expect no less. I've missed chatting with you, lifes been crazy, nana passed away and school started so I've been kinda layin low. Glad to hear you are doing well with your training!

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  8. I am so impressed that you ran in the rain this morning--and that you ran TWENTY MILES in it!! You are a running machine!!

    I have to tell you that when I saw the points you earned for the 20 miler, I laughed out loud--a huge belly laugh that had my husband asking me what on EARTH was so funny! Thirty-eight activity points in one fell swoop--bwahahaha, that is awesome!!

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  9. Holy dedication! I felt so blah I barely got a one mile walk in today!

    Rock on!!!

    Ps are you still looking for a home for Paleo? (Did I spell that right?!)

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  10. WOW you are awesome!!!!! Good job on your run today!! I don't want to sound like an asshole and I'm sure you know it, but if you eat all of your activity points, you know you won't really lose weight, right? I hope you read it how I meant it! I just know how you've been trying to do it "different" this marathon around. I enjoyed reading Pete's advice about volumetric food choices…great fact to keep you full without giving up calories! LOVE your blog girlfriend

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    1. She'd still lose weight. The program encourages you to eat your activity points! Trust me, they wouldn't give them to you if you wouldn't. I forget the exact formula but they basically "let" you eat half the calories you burned.

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  11. Wow! Fantastic job! I need to work on not being so dependent on my headphones. I am
    Only running 5ks as of now but want to get in to long distances, but I'm worried about boredom or going crazy without podcasts or music! Anyone have any tips?

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  12. That, my friend, is dedication. Now you'll be prepared for anything!

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  13. Whew! You are a running machine. You might have to change your blog title to "Runs for POINTS!"

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  14. Great job! I have my first 18 mile run tomorrow and I am glad the weather is looking good so far. I have been getting into the podcasts and really like The Moth. They are short true stories that have had me laughing and crying on runs(I must look silly!)

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  15. I love running in the cooler weather. I run on a treadmill at the gym in the summer, so I can't wait to get outside and run now.

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  16. Great run!! Kudos for sticking it out through the rain!!

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  17. Amazing!! This is so inspiring!

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  18. Dang lady ... Just thinking about running 20 miles makes me want to nap :-) LOL

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  19. I did a 20 mile run this morning, but I can't imagine going that far in the rain! Great job!

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  20. Yay for 20 miles!!! and for sticking it out in the rain!! I wanted to ask you what type of GU do you eat? My longest distance is only a half but I am hoping to start training for a marathon. I know everybody is different and I get some major stomach issues after mile 6:( I still like to hear what works for others! thanks!! Love your blog!

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    1. I love the Chocolate Outrage flavor and the Peanut Butter flavor (although I can't have the PB one for 5 more weeks!) I don't really get stomach issues like some people do, so you may not do well with the GU. Jessica discovered that she can't use GU because of her stomach, so she uses Hammer products without a problem!

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    2. Thanks Katie! I am really starting to like the longer runs but I sure dont enjoy being afraid that I am going to have an accident:( I think at mile 6 my stomach just likes to say "Go ahead, take one more step, I dare you" I'm going to look for the Hammer.

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  21. I ran 16 yesterday!!! Is it totally flat where u run?? My miles are not as consistent as yours!!

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    1. Flat as a pancake! ;) That's why I always complain about hills when I race--I'm just not used to them.

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  22. Wow. What a proud accomplishment to run so many miles in the rain like that! I love running in the rain, but I can't say I've run in a downpour like that. Way to go!

    Cheers!

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  23. Great job on your rainy run! I did my first half marathon in April and it rained the entire time. It was cold, muddy and miserable but I felt so proud of myself at the end!

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  24. Great job on your rainy run! I did my first half marathon in April and it rained the entire time. It was cold, muddy and miserable but I felt so proud of myself at the end!

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  25. Awesome 20 miler! Wow! You are tough - I'm such a big baby about running in the rain and you did 20!!

    I like the latest WW program too. And seeing how many AP's you earn is fun!

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  26. I love your blog and read it daily. I find you so inspiring. I have followed WW for many years and finally made it to goal last October with about an 80 lb total loss. I love the Points Plus program. There is one thing that I thought I would point out to you. You may or may not already know this, but the general concensus of WW board posters and my personal experience is that the Activity Tracker tends to over estimate the APs for people who exercise regularly. It seems to be more acurate for people that are not in such good cardiovascular shape. Alot of people, myself included, calculate APs from using the heart rate monitor and the formula of 1 AP = 80 calories burned. I always eat EVERY SINGLE point that I have coming to me (Daily Points, Weekly Points and Activity Points). So it is important for me to count acurately.

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    1. That's great info to have--thanks so much! I was a little worried about earning so many points, because I, too, will eat ALL of my allotted points ;)

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I'd love to hear from you! I read all of my comments, and if you have a question, I do my best to respond; sometimes, however, I get busy and forget to go back to reply, so if it's important, just email me! :)