Someones gotta yack for it to be considered a work out...right!?!

After a lazy Saturday putting gutters on 1 side of the garage before getting rained on I joined Steph and here sisters & brother-in-law for dinner at one of our fav. places to eat...The Chatterbox. Love that place! I had the make your own Mac and Cheese. Mine had sausage, grilled chicken, bell peppers and onions. It was delicious! Mmmmm....

So Mn was hot and rainy all weekend and I had an 18 miler on the schedule. Earlier in the week Pharmie and I decided to join up and tackle the heat together. So Sunday morning at 5:30 am I showed up at her place ready to run. Kinda. I set everything out the night before knowing that 5am would come to quickly and I would forget something...well even with setting everything out I forgot something....the bottles to the fuel belt. Ugg...Pharmie was nice enough to empty one of her's and throw some of my Gatorade in there.
The beginning part of the run was pretty uneventful, which is good! When we left that morning the weather station had St. Paul at 75 degrees and 85%+ humidity (if I remember right). We just cruised along and grabbed a drink around mile 3, refilled and kept on our way. Mile 3 - 5'ish we were along the marathon route (going backwards) and I was getting that "urge." Well shortly Pharmie and I got off the path to hit up the restrooms at a local Dunn Brothers....whew, that was close. Back on the trail, Miles 5-7 are just cruising along..drinking (maybe hydrating is a better term?) and chatting. Miles 7 - 9 I was starting to feel it a bit...I think the heat was starting to get to me. The sun was stuck behind some clouds but I just felt zapped on the smalled of inclines. At mile 9 we turned around after a short discussion about how far we were going and i was confused (maybe still asleep).
We reached a drinking fountain at 8.8 miles, according to Mr. Garmin, and Pharmie said lets just go .2 more and turn around and then hit up the drinking fountain. I'm like, what? But then we would be turning around at 9 and the drinking fountain would be 9.2...are you trying to make me run an extra .2? DUH BORSCH! If we turn around at 9 and go back the way we came will we finish with 18 miles. I don't know what my deal was, somewhere in my head I was fixed that the "Bubbler" was the mid point.
After that brain fart we ate, drank and were under way. I was feeling better simply because Pharmie took the water bottles...I carried both on the way out and she got them on the way back. I was hoping that would slow her down on the way didn't. Maybe a mile after the turn around I was feeling the heat again...we stopped at every possible drinking fountain (about every 2 miles) for me to drink, refil and throw water on my head and back.
With a little over 3 miles to go Pharmie was still feeling great and I had an HR in the 170's at a 10:20 pace...ekk! Borsch is burnin up! Pharmie gave me a bottle and went on her way, she wanted to push it home and I decided to settle into whatever pace held me in Zone higher! Well with the toughest part of the marathon course coming up I was in for it. The chart below shows our route...we pretty much started around mile marker 22, rank to around 13.5 and headed back the same way.
Right about that nice spike in the middle of the hill is where I decided I could no longer keep my past few hours worth of gels, shot blocks, water and Nuun in my stomach anymore! YACK! I felt better after yacking but man that sucked! A nice lady stopped and gave me some water, since my bottle was already out (only 1.5 miles up the hill). I thanked her and she went on her speedy way...she had to be doing 7's. I made it nearly home before I felt like yacking again so I called it quits at 17.8. This week 17.8 miles = 18 miles. The walk back was nice and calm...I'm sure my legs would not have felt that good without it.
Steph and Steve made us all a delicious breakfast...pancakes with blueberries, strawberries and chocolate chunks...mmmm...what a wonderful variety! Thanks guys!
The run is a success in my book! I worked hard, covered the miles and am happy with it...all before 10 am to! I think I'm on my way to my goal for the year...finish Twin Cities, have fun and be able to say I ran hard.
Today I'm heading out for a nice recovery ride and I'm going to enjoy this long awaited recovery week!


What a weekend!

I had an awesome weekend! First thing Friday morning I left town with Steph and 4 other friends. We headed north to a State Park for some camping, canoeing and relaxation. Lets just say that after 2 full days of drinking with friends I found myself in pretty good shape Sunday morning, ready for my long run for the week. This week scared me a little, 16...something about that 14 mark seams reachable (being only 0.9 milers farther then a half marry). But 16 seemed long. I helped some of the friends pack up sunday morning, did a little reading for school and took a nice nap. :-) Then woke up, ate lunch and got ready to run. I'd say I was off and running a little after 1'ish. The plan was to get in 16 miles however I could. The first few miles felt great. After about 30-40 min of running I noticed the slight breeze died down and the air got humid and stale. Everything seemed hotter. At 4.8 miles I reached a small beach, I grabbed some water to refill my Fuel Belt and ate a small Rice Crispy Bar. Side bar...some how I forgot the nutrition I purposely bought to bring along...whoops! So the "snacks" we brought with had to do. I decided to ditch the trail through the woods and run on the road now. It helped. There was a little more air movement on the road but it really wrapped through the woods well and stretches that were lined with trees on both sides just seemed to have that stale hot air.

Eventually, I reached the road that led into the camp ground and saw Steph...driving out to bring me water. She noticed just sitting at the camp site that the air got stale and humid. She must really love me to jump in her car and drive around hoping to offer me more water! I was actually ok for water at the moment and declined. I made my way back to camp, re-fueled and went out for a little out and back stretch to try and get up to 13 miles. Looking back that stretch, from the campsite (10 miles) to 13 miles (back at the camp site) was ROUGH! I was thinking about throwing in the towel. My Fuel Belt chaffed, my thighs chaffed...I could feel the heat from my legs rubbing with nearly every stride. Back at camp I refueled and hydrated again. Steph was waiting, ready to join me for one last out and back...3 miles...less than a 5k.

As soon as we started I noticed I was getting tight. Steph asked me before we started, "How are you doing?" And my simple response was, "I'm running low & hot." It was nice to have someone with me, we didn't say much and that was ok. On the out stretch I managed to eat bugs #1 and #2 for the day...GROSS! I gaged and only wanted something to drink. Normally this is where I reach back and just take a swig from the Fuel Belt... I left it at the camp site. I figured on these two out and back stretches I didn't need the weight and could like for 3 miles without water. Eventually I tried not to think about water and just kept looking at my watch to see when I could turn around. Steph and I hit the turn around, she kept going for a little bit..just to the next sign and I took that as a short walk break. 1.5 miles to go...and we're off. Gradually I lifted the pace, unconsciously that is. I didn't realize it until I heard Steph breathing harder and harder. I looked down at the Garmin and we went from 10:30's to 9:30's...then 9:15's. It was nice to know I still had a kick at the end of 16 miles but man, I really was just running for high quality H2O.

I made it home and finished the all 16 miles. I drank a crap ton of water and threw ice under a hat, held ice on my neck & thighs. That was really good! I got in a nice stretch and then Steph treated me to an ice cream sandwich at the little store near our camp site. Mmmmm....

Recapping the run, it felt ok. It was a little slow but that is just fine with me. I've moved on from trying to beat last year's time. Today I just want to finish and finish being able to say, "That is as hard as I can run 26.2 miles today." That is all I want. I'll take whatever Mother Nature throws at me on 10/4 and just run with it...pun intended! :-)

Monday I felt pretty good, just stiff and sore. I am a little shocked that I feel this good. Today I'm headed out for a 3 mile easy run and I'm actually looking forward to the 18 miler that looms for this hot weekend they are forecasting for us in MN.


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