Today was my last 20 miler before the Maui Oceanfront Marathon in 15 days. After a leisurely breakfast, watching a couple episodes of Season 4 of The Tudors, and making a new "Motivation Mix" on my ipod all in the name of "waiting for it to warm up outside", I couldn't stall any longer. And when Adam got back from a great 10 miler, there was no question that I had to get out there! So, I left this:
To head out into this:
I carried my Nathan Hydration Pack (as per my New Year's running goals) so that I wouldn't have to stop running to drink. Well, the best laid plans......by mile 1 the water in the tubing was frozen solid. Harrumph. I guess a benefit to running in 16 degree weather is that one does not get all that thirsty! I was able to run 8.5 miles before I had to stop for a drink.
I tried to take it easy for the whole run. I stayed at a comfortable pace and was never short of breath or pushing too hard. I had a few slow miles (10:30 range) due to ice. There were a few segments of path where waves from the lake were crashing onto the path. Pretty, and entertaining to dodge the waves, but slow going.
I felt pretty good until Mile 18. 18-20 were hard, but not terrible. My pace (not counting my 4 water breaks where I had to pull the water bag out of the backpack since the tube was frozen) was 9:49 min/mi. As I wrote on daily mile, I'm not sure how to interpret my pace. Glass half full would be "hey, that's only 4 sec/mile off my marathon goal pace, and it felt easy". Glass half empty would be "yeah, but you had some breaks to pull the water out of the bag". The reality is probably somewhere in b/t. Regardless, I think I'm ready for January 23rd!
I ran with my camera just to make sure that would be okay for Maui. Hence the pictures. It was fine.
A bonus was that one 5K of this 32K run counted as participation in Adam's (of I Am Boring fame) Freeze Your Thorns Off Virtual 5K. For the non-runner-bloggers out there, a virtual race is when a blogger hosts a race of a certain distance on a certain day that people all over the world can participate in. We then report in our results. Just one more way to keep each other motivated!
Looking forward to a cross training day tomorrow. I think I earned it:)