Marathon Training Week 11 Long Run

I truly do love to run and one of my favorite runs is the long run mainly because I never know what to expect. In my mind, a long run is any run that is 10 miles or longer. I have to get into those double digits. I understand the value of the long run in teaching my body to use energy reserves differently. Sooner or later in a run, you are going to run through your glycogen reserves and have to start burning fat. This is where the long run teaches your body just how to do that. But for me, the long run is more of the mental challenge, the mental training, the confidence builder. Yep, all that physiological stuff is still happening but it is the mental part that intrigues me the most.

In week 10 of my training I kinda flopped on my long run. You can read about it HERE. I look back on that day as a successful failure. I failed in running 20 miles but I succeeded in running 8 miles and it built the foundation I needed for this past weekend. I really wanted those 20 miles.....deep down inside. I was feeling very insecure, doubtful, and nervous about my capabilities.

Come Friday I was itching to run mainly because I wanted it done and over. I wanted to know I could do it. And it amazed me how doubtful my mind was since this was to be the second 20 mile training run in this training series. I know I could do it. I had....just not the weekend before.

Between texts with dear hubby I clarified we couldn't run together Sunday morning since Mom wasn't in town. I then texted that I really just wanted Saturday morning but that I can't get what I want. I think I was feeling a bit sulky and then I got annoyed. Why can't I do what I want? Why can't I run Saturday? I mean, besides the point that dear hubby works all day Saturday and my go-to for back-up childcare is working as well. But still....what is stopping me? And in all reality, it was me stopping me with my own predetermined mindsets of what could be. I turned to darling daughter and asked her told her that we were going to go to the gym Saturday morning and then we were going to go run with the jogging stroller. We were going to do 20 miles and afterwards, I would take her to the park and out to lunch. That was the bribery part. I did such a good job convincing her this was the best way ever to spend a Saturday morning that I was pretty excited about it too!

Then it was Saturday morning and I had to execute my plan. We got to the gym, she settled into the Kids' Club, and I ran as hard as I could to crank out as many miles in the gym as possible. I wanted to keep the jogging stroller part as short and sweet as I could for darling daughter. I ended up completing 13 miles. I had doubts about the merit of such a long pause in a run to get from part 1 to part 2 but figured getting it done was the most important part. After a pit stop for drinks we made the 30-minute or so trip to our next running spot. I got darling daughter into the jogging stroller quite easily but in that first mile she asked three times if we were done. Oh my! Not a good sign. We also had to make a run back to the car to get a toy she I forgot. And then we ran on and it was probably one of my toughest days on this route.

I don't think it was the running with a jogging stroller per se but people were everywhere today and I felt I had to keep dodging them or come to stops to avoid those stepping out right in front of us. There was also some construction going on that made areas of the sidewalk impossible or difficult to pass. We were nearing the end and darling daughter was still ready to call it quits. I was at 4.76 miles of the final 7 miles I needed and felt hot, lightheaded, and defeated. I called it quits mainly because I feared I was about to pass out from heat (it was now noon) and questioned if darling daughter was as hot as I was. I took her to the park she wanted to play at and tried to run some more but called it quits again at an additional 0.41 miles mainly because all the parents were staring at me like I was a crazy lady and I just wanted to play with my darling daughter.

We had a blast and then headed out to lunch and to do our errands. It was a long day and on the drive home I told darling daughter I wasn't going to take my running shoes off until I finished my 20 miles. She said I better not. I got home, got her situated with a snack and TV, and hopped on the treadmill for my final bit of running. I had about a minute to go and my phone rang and I could tell it was my mom calling the second time for the day. Oops...I never responded to her first message. But I declared I was not going to stop, that I was going to finish my run, that I could finish my run, and darling daughter looked up to me and said, "you better not quit" and I didn't. With about 30 seconds left I felt my eyes swelling up with tears and I was an emotional crazy lady. And yes, at the end I cried because those 20 miles were the best in my life. I fought for them and I won. I was given many good reasons to quit. 17.76 would have been okay. I stopped due to heat. It was a smart decision. Just over 18 miles would have been fine too. I stopped to play with my daughter. But 20 miles was my goal and 20 miles I ran...split between the gym treadmill, jogging stroller, park loops, and incline treadmill. And it was just what I needed to get my confidence back. And now I am ready to complete my training to run my second marathon in September. And I am looking to PR....perhaps not break 4 hours yet but I will PR. I will.

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for my family.
Daily Affirmation: I create opportunities for myself to succeed.

P.S. This is my 13th half marathon+ for 2012.
P.P.S. Correction - this is really for training week 12. Oopsie!


  1. Way to go on getting those 20 miles in .

  2. love the positive attitude! good job!

  3. Great job pushing through on the run! Great way to fit it in, I have split a lot of runs between treadmill and outside or with/without the kid in the stroller. My hubby and I often each run half a long run alone and then the other part with the kid.

  4. that's just awesome! you fit it all in and spent the very important needed time with your little girl!! youre very inspiring! keep up the great work! SPA Love

  5. Nice work!!!! Sometimes it's tough but so glad you got it in there!

  6. Wow, way to make it work! I loved that descrip! -- Ericka @ The Sweet Life (sweetlifeericka.com)

  7. Wow! What an inspiring story. You really persevered and made it happen and yes, partly thanks to co-operation and cheering on from your DD but MOSTLY from your will to WANT to do it. I am so happy for you and you must be very proud of yourself.

  8. You are doing great! Hard work pays off. I love your confidence!

  9. You got it in! Well done!

  10. Thanks for the supportive comments! They do truly help me over any hurdles!

  11. Run lady run .... you did it. I know I never told you how much you rock when I had the chance but now I have to say "you RUN ... and rock". Keep going love. Keep running.


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