20 Miles Without My Watch

I ran my first 20 miler last week.  It shouldn't be that big of a deal, at least that is what I kept telling myself to prep for this run.  I had already run 18.  What is 2 more miles?

I'll go ahead and answer that for you... if you ran almost no miles the two previous weeks, those two more miles are everything!  That one number 20, those two more miles, feel very large, like they may take you all day to run, maybe impossible!

20 miles


Last week, while we were on vacation I thought it would be doable to run 10 miles each day and get a 50 mile week.  That way, even though I wasn't doing a 'long run' I would still be getting my miles in, and that would be just as good.  Of course I ran nowhere near that on vacation!  I ran a 10 miler and 8 miles.  Pretty sure that was it!

The week prior to leaving I was going to run the 20, but I ended up feeling sick that Wednesday and Thursday I packed and Friday we left for our trip.  I ran hardly any miles that week either!

I was anxious for this run.  I get anxious when I make a plan, and don't stick to the plan!  I want to be prepared, so I can run my best.  But, always, ask any runner, things come up, life happens etc.  We just have to be flexible.  I have to talk myself down, or up, however you want to think of it.  I will be ok.  What are my goals, what is my purpose, do any of those need adjustment?  There is still time to train, my pace has been just fine.  This process, for me is to be enjoyed, I am not aiming to be any kind of super star.  I have to remind myself of that! 

The story of my watch is that it is dying, or some component of it is dying.  It worked fine while we were gone.  It's old.  Probably time for a new one.  So, I went to head out for my long run and it was dead!  Awesome. 

I had already planned to stay near home because I didn't want to carry my fuel.  That honestly is my biggest gripe with distance running, the blasted running belt!  Since my watch wasn't working I ran my 5 mile routes, because I know them.  I know they are 5 miles.  I wouldn't keep track of my time, but of course need to make sure I'm going the distance!

I ran the 'hilly' 5 miles 2 times, coming back to my house to start again and drink.  The second time I ate a GU.  My next 5 miles was my flat route, then I did the last 5 on the treadmill.  The rain was coming and I'm less positive about how many miles are exactly what on that route.

I think my first 10 miles were around 7:50 - 8 pace.  The next 5 felt slower, but as I checked the time when I got back it was around an 8 as well, maybe 8:10?  The last 5 I ran at an 8 pace on the treadmill.

treadmill running

My first 5 miles were classic torture I like to put myself through.  Why am I running a marathon?  I could just do the half, not sure how I feel about these 20 miles.  This is going to take forever, my legs feel heavy etc.

My second 5 I was able to tell myself to just be quiet!  I felt just fine, the first 5 weren't bad at all, so I kept going.  I am doing this race and all will be well, even if this run is hard.

My third 5 my right butt and hip were feeling really tight.  They have been giving me problems for a while.  I've not been able to work the issues out.  I made it through though, and felt pretty consistent.

My final 5 were a fight mentally.  My body felt ok, relatively, but I was ready to be done! 

I'm glad I wasn't wearing a watch for this run.  I was able to just get my miles in without focusing on pace.  Sometimes the focus does need to be on pace, but not this day!  I just needed to get these miles logged this time.  Done.  My first 20 is done!


I had my highest mileage week.  I ended up with 52.  Here is how the rest of my week went.

MONDAY - 5 outside // 7:29 pace.  wu and cd were @ &7:50.  middle 3 @ 7:15.

MONDAY #2 - OTF - This day we ran in 1 minute intervals all the way up to 15 incline, then back down 2% to finish with all out pace.  I ran the whole thing.  I didn't change my pace until 7 incline.  It was tough, but got another 2.5 miles in, along with strength too!

TUESDAY - 8 outside @ 7:50 pace.  My legs felt the work I'd done the day before.  Not sore, but I could tell they were feeling worked.

WEDNESDAY - 5 easy on the mill 8 pace.

THURSDAY - 20 miles - see above

FRIDAY - rest.  I went to E's field trip and tried to run to the front door, as to not be late... it wasn't happening!  I considered a little recovery run, but opted to stretch and rest.

SATURDAY - I did a 3 part workout.  Ran 4.5 to OTF worked out ran 4.5 home. 

My watch was actually working this day.  I'd gotten it to charge.  I now can't get it to find power at all, either to charge or to turn on.  I think my 4 miles were around 7:50 on the way out.  On the way home I was at an 8.  As I headed to my workout I was feeling like I should be running faster!  It was only 4 miles.  I tell you what though, just putting all the miles on my legs last week was good for me.  There was no moving faster!  Although, I was able to pick it up at OTF on the mill.  There was a bunch of rowing Saturday that worked my legs!  The run home was a steady recovery pace!

Last week was my highest mileage so far.  The Buffalo Marathon is Memorial Day weekend.  I've still got some good training weeks ahead of me.

My plan this week is to run similar to last week.  Next week I'll back off a little before I push up again. 

I still haven't signed up for the 50K, but I'm still preparing for it.  Can you say chicken?  Yep, I have a fear of that commitment!  I don't think I'll taper for the marathon, because I really am planning on doing the 50k.