Sunday, October 02, 2005

To Life (or 18)

(Before I begin, I have two things to say. One is congratulations to Brent on his marathon today. I’m eagerly awaiting more details. The second is thank you to all the people who wished me well in their comments. I do appreciate it.)

Last time I posted something to do with 18, Naomi pointed out the numerical equivalence of 18 and the word “life” in Hebrew. Well today I ran 18 miles – although “life” wasn’t the word that came to mind for most of it.

So let’s see. I couldn’t get out of bed this morning. Then I couldn’t get out of the house. I think I was just really nervous about this 18. I wasn’t sure I could do it, and I had this feeling that if I couldn’t finish 18 today, I wouldn’t be able to finish 26.2 in a month. So instead of starting at 7:00 like I did last week, I didn’t start until after 9:00. With the forecast for a high of 80, this wasn’t such a bright idea. But anyway…

Today’s run was planned for Central Park. The route is controlled, and I thought the hills would be good for training as well. I was thinking of running counter-clockwise which has a tougher hill, but I was worried about not finishing the 18, so I wimped out and went clockwise.

So just after 9:00 I set out on my 3 hour journey. (A 3 hour tour…) There was a half marathon going on the park, so there were a lot of runners in the park. (In fact I’m pretty sure I saw Chelle there. She blew by me during the race, and then passed me a few times while cooling off with a few more laps afterwards. At her speed I’m not even sure she could see me, let alone notice me.)

Each loop in Central Park is a tad over 6 miles. The first loop went by in 59:28. I was listening to Phedippidations, which today was about the long slow run. I was therefore deliberately trying to run slow, but I always seem to slip into that 10 min mile pace. The second loop also went by in about an hour. I stopped for a trip to the port-a-potty and a few minutes of stretching. The third loop was where it got tough. Last week I did 15 and felt like I could go all the way. This week, that last loop was not easy. (I would really not have been happy to have to run another 8.2 miles after it.) I’ve been trying these new Sports Beans from Jelly Belly. None of the gels are kosher, and I really like jelly beans anyway. I had one at mile 7 or 8, and at 14 I took another one. Although I think I had enough energy, I still felt tired and was breathing heavy. Since this was a training run, I didn’t see the need to push myself, so I slowed down to walk for a couple of minutes. Before it got too hard to start up again, I resumed my running pace. It was pretty hot by this time, and I’m sure this affected how I was feeling. In any case, I pushed through, and somehow finished that last loop in 59 minutes. (Maybe I was subconsciously running faster just to finish the damn thing!) So my total time for the whole 18 was just under 3 hours. Maybe a bit fast again, but hopefully I’ll be ok.

My shins didn’t really bother me. I did feel various aches and pains, but I don’t think any of these were unexpected. When I got home I decided to try one of those ice baths. Except for the ice part. (I don’t know how you guys do that!) I just let my bathtub fill with cold water as I sat in it. I used all the various tricks I’d read, such as wrapping my upper body with a towel, and drinking a hot coffee while in the tub, but it was still pretty damn cold. One nice thing was that the hot shower afterwards felt reaalllyy good.

After drinking a ton and eating a sandwich or two, I found myself really tired. I wanted to write about my run, but I just didn’t have the energy. I crawled back into bed for a nap and afterwards all was good again. (And to think that last week I went straight to work!)

So all in all, I’m pretty happy. I only have one more run longer than this one before I take on the big M. I’m really getting excited and nervous together as it comes so close. I just can’t wait to cross that finish line.


Blogger Flatman said...

Very rocked the 18 like you are going to rock the M!

Monday, October 03, 2005  
Blogger Running Chick said...

You got it done!! One step closer to the big M!

You didn't mention hydration at were drinking during that 18, yes?

Monday, October 03, 2005  
Blogger Danny said...

Of course. I had a water bottle, and I also stole a few cups of water from the half marathon tables.

Based on estimates I've read in other places, I'm pretty sure I don't drink enough. However, I do get at least a mouthful every mile or so, and it seems to work for me. (I've had to take potty breaks on both of my last two long runs.)

Monday, October 03, 2005  
Blogger Yvonne said...

Congrats Danny! I'm looking forward to reading about the rest of your lead up to the big race :)

Monday, October 03, 2005  
Blogger Jon (was) in Michigan said...

Great run, Danny! Sounds like you came through it with flying colors. I think you'll be good to go for the 20 and then the big M.

And the ice bath does best if you start with an inch of nice warm water first, then it eases the temp down more slowly when you just turn on the cold. Screaming is optional. :)

Monday, October 03, 2005  
Blogger Brooklyn said...

Funny thing about the ice bath - you get used to it, just as you do long runs, ice packs, new nutritional regimines, getting up early, etc. Since I moved, I don't have a bathtub, but I found an old clawfoot out back in a little shed that my landlord took out when he rennovated. I'm thinking of dragging it out and hooking up some cheap faucet to it, just to get in those ice baths after long runs. Because it really is that important.

I'd like to try those Sports Beans sometime. We really will have to run together someday. I think 10:00 is your natural pace, so don't sweat that you're trying to start slow, but find yourself there pretty quickly.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005  
Blogger brent said...

you're getting closer! oh so close! can't wait to virtually cheer and read about the experience. i have a feeling it's going to be an awesome day. you've come far in your training! so one more big long run and then taper? have a great run this weekend. thanks for the comments and shout out on my race. cool.

Thursday, October 06, 2005  
Blogger Rivster said...

I didn't know that you could start an ice bath with warm wather! That is very handy info.

I find that if I read, the time passes a lot more rapidly. Well, as rapidly as it's going to pass while sitting in ice-cold water :)

Friday, October 07, 2005  

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