Monday, December 27, 2010

Who Ran 20 Miles on the Treadmill??

THIS GIRL, THAT'S WHO!!! From 5:15 until nearly 7:45, I was on that treadmill. Wow.

Prior to this, my longest treadmill run was ~15. 20 is a LOT longer than 15 on a treadmill. A LOT longer. There were a lot of challenges both before and during this run that I could have easily used as excuses to not finish. But, boy, I did not want this run hanging over my head any longer so I got 'er done!

The challenges:
  • Ummm...running 20 miles. Period. Duh.
  • I had heartburn all day, I never get heartburn, so that was wierd.
  • When I got home from work I was STARVING, so I ate way too much (~500 cal) which then sat in my stomach like a ton of bricks for the first 9 miles.
  • I had all kinds of niggles, esp in my knees. This is unusual for me so made me nervous for the first few miles.
  • For the first time ever in my life, I had chafing problems:( My left arm especially. It was like a shock of pain w/ every arm movement from mile 6 on, so I spent a lot of time running w/ chicken arms. I'm sure I looked real cute.
  • Those are plenty of challenges, I think.

But, I did it! Hurrah! I ended up eating a total of 8 gu chomps, starting at mile 9, then every couple miles or so. I took a 1 minute break to refill water and record my times/mileage after each 60 minutes (the treadmill stops automatically so I have to pause), but counted that time into my total time so it's reflected in my pace.

I felt totally fine from a legs and breathing perspective until about mile 15. Then it really started to hurt. My painful left arm became the least of my worries as I had all the pains I usually get late in a marathon- legs, feet, back- you marathoners know what I'm talking about. I don't remember a run hurting this bad in a while. The 18 miler I did 4 weeks ago was pain free! I started to get short of breath around 18 but I think this was more because I was in pain, trying to blow off the lactic acid in my legs (as CO2), than because I was cardiovascularly tired. I'm glad I did this run because it made me realize that if I want Maui to be fun in a few weeks, I better get in some more long runs so the race itself feels easier!

So, now I'm groaning my way around the apartment heating up the Christmas leftovers that my husband was kind enough to plate for me. I don't think I would have ate (due to inability to get off the couch) if he hadn't done that so thank you Adam!

So how did the run go by the numbers? Not too bad:

Total mileage: 20.02 (and yes, I am counting that 0.02 dammit!)
Total time: 201 mins and 39 seconds (~3 hrs, 22 mins)
Pace: 10:04 min/miles

1st hour: 9:31 pace, 9:41 counting the pause
2nd hour: 9:38 pace, 9:48 counting the pause
3rd hour: 10:25 pace, counting the pause
last 21 min, 39 sec: 12:44 OUCH! (no pause, but obviously took a walk break!)

You can see that things would have certainly gone downhill from there. So I think the lesson is that 9:40 is a reasonable pace, but I need to work on leg/muscle endurance, because that's what slowed me down later on.

But you know what? I won the mental game that is running on a treadmill. I won it multiple times as I wanted desperately to stop almost every 5 minutes for the last 1.5 hours. I feel good about that because I think it's easier to talk yourself into continuing in a race situation than on a treadmill in your basement where no one is paying any attention to you, in fact probably would rather you get off the best treadmill in the gym so they can use it! (Don't worry- there were other open 'mills, I'm no treadmill hog.)

Time to relax.


  1. You are amazing!!!! I could never do that on a treadmill.

  2. Very impressive. I love the treadmill, but 20 miles is a long run anytime!