What’s worse than running 18 miles?
As I mentioned on Saturday, I was so pumped to have Sarah come into the city to keep me company during my 18 mile run. As I was waiting for her to arrive I opened the windows to the apartment and I heard what I thought was rain. I looked outside and it looked wet, but for all I knew it could have rained during the night. A few minutes later I heard the downpour. When Sarah got to my place it was more of a drizzle again, but it was definitely not what either of us expected. I was told it only rains in San Francisco in the spring. Obviously whoever told me that didn’t know what they were talking about.
We hesitantly took off, Sarah on her bike and me on my trusty legs. Not even a few blocks later it let loose raining…and didn’t let up for another 13 or so miles. Sarah hadn’t gotten to tour Golden Gate Park before, so now she was getting to see what it looked like wet and without a lot of tourists. She was great company and never once complained, even though we were both soaked and literally ringing water out of our clothes. For a number of miles she got off her bike and ran next to me while pushing her bike. It was quite impressive! And, since her job requires her to return to NYC a lot, and for a number of weeks at a time, it was really great having dedicated time to catch up with her. We tried a few new things during the run: caffeine, sliced apples, and ibuprofen. I’m not sure which one of those I loved the most, but I will be incorporating all three of them into my marathon.
I found on the way back that since the ibuprofen did its job I wasn’t in much pain, but my breathing was not keeping up with my legs. I’m sure a huge part of that was my lack of running the last few weeks. After the rain let up we were finally able to see again (“I can see clearly now, the rain is gone…”), but we found that even in being able to see the gigantic puddles did not mean you could avoid them. Ugh. Our feet sloshed through the entire run and never dried.
Per my original training plan, this week I was supposed to be doing 20 miles and my longest training run was going to be 22 miles in two more weeks. I was really bummed to have not gotten my long run in last week and therefore no longer be able to train up to 22 miles (you don’t build more than two miles at a time). But at the end of the run Sarah, being the incredible person she is, offered to push me to do 20 miles instead of 18 since I’d had an extra week to rest my legs. It definitely wasn’t easy – for me to do it or her to motivate me. But, we found one of the few flat areas in the city and circled one of the block a couple of times. By the time we reached my front door again her GPS watch said 19.74 miles. Granted, it was .26 miles short of 20 miles, but I was very ok with it. And to finally be able to peel my shoes and socks off. So, what’s worse than running 18 miles? Running 19.74 miles in the rain.
I feel like my attitude towards the marathon has totally shifted and I realize now…I’m going to complete this thing! Come hell or high water or rain.