I have previously commented that I barely remember my first NY marathon. I wasn't blogging, I did not keep a running log, and really don't remember much about it. And as my recent training has been going on, I haven't been blogging, and have missed providing some of the crucial details that allow me to remember and be more invested in the travails of my training to learn from the good and the bad.
First -- a couple of weeks ago I served as a pace leader for a long run in Central Park. I had planned to pace for 11 miles, and that worked great. I was spot on. They needed pace makers for miles 11-16, and though I had originally planned to bail, miles 5-11 felt great, so I figured, .. Why not? Well, now I know why not. I had a...ummm.. GI issue at mile 11, and missed the gel and food station, so I had zero calories in me. Fluids yes, calories no. About mile 14, I turned to my co-pacer and said...I don't feel good. As in I REALLY don't feel good. Felt nauseous. Could hardly run. I cracked off the back of the group and walked half a mile or so, then trudged home in a slow mile 16. Ugh, not a good ending to an otherwise great day. Note to self -- eat calories during long run.
Last weekend I decided to run 15 miles in a long run. By the way the day worked out, I had to go at 2 pm. It isn't boiling hot here this summer, so I really didn't pay much attention to the weather. Plus I had just bought a fluid belt, so I knew I could carry water with me. (More on this later.) BAD plan for a run. I ran 6 miles over hills and then a flat 10 or so. The first 6 hilly miles blew up my legs, and I did Ok on the flat part until about mile 11 or so. And then I noticed, Gee, it is kind of hot out here. And humid too. In fact, it was actually 86 degrees, with 80% humidity, heat index of 91. And I had not eaten much the couple days before (still on a diet trying to lose weight). I was sweating like CRAZY. I drank 20 ounces at mile 6. Drained 20 ounces from my fluid belt over miles 6-11, refilled at mile 11 (thanks Dunkin Donuts!), drained another 20 ounces on way home in miles 11-16. And still felt terrible. I am hitting the wall around mile 13 or 14 or so.
These long runs make me think...no way can I run a marathon in two months. Doing a post mortem, I am not so harsh on myself; I can see the heat was really brutal. And the fact I basically ate about 2000 calories total in the two days before really did not set me up well to run 16 miles in the heat. Thankfully, I had my fuel belt with me. Seriously, it was the first time I had run with one ...ever...and it really saved me. I was never in real danger or anything, but if I had not been able to consume 40 ounces of water over the last 10 miles, I would have had to abandon the run and found water. And it wasn't that cumbersome or jiggly or anything. Very good addition to the gear repertoire.
So after that shitty long run on Saturday, I took Sunday off, and ran on Labor Day. Labor Day last year was the day I hurt my calf so I kind of have bad karma for runs on Labor Day. This run started off super strong...I was crushing the pace. I started to feel something in my right high ankle/shin but kept running through it, figuring it was just one of those running pains. Ran 6.3 miles in 51: xx; great run.
Except for that shin pain. And when I stopped...oooouccch. Hmm. This is bad. Stress fracture? Overtraining injury can you say? Ice all day. Compression sock. Elevation. Very sore to the touch. Some Dr. Googling, and it is either a shin splint or the beginning of stress fracture. Felt MUCH better Tuesday, so I am guessing shin splint. And I think I am right, btw. But what could have caused it? I have never had a shin splint in my life.
The victim: a new pair of shoes! My trusty Gel Kayano 19s, are worn out. I felt the worn out-ness in the last run, so I brought home my gym shoes to run in (I keep a pair of shoes at the gym.) Those are Nike LunarGlide5. Really comfortable, cool shoes. And I had run both Labor Day weekend runs in them (23+ miles) in two days. Hmm, and one of the causes of shin splints are shoes not appropriate for foot and pronation type. Hmm, doesn't take Sherlock Holmes to connect the dots...So LunarGlides are out. Back to Asics (order new pair of GT-2000s (more support) and Brooks GTS 19 (Have run in Brooks before and love them).
So, this weekend...a 4 mile race in Central park. I plan to tack on another 10 miles or so to get my long run in at the same time. I have never done that...run a race and then add more to get miles. The pace and adrenaline from a race messes up the "long run mentality" for me. So I will see if I can do it...But I will eat today. And not wear the LunarGlides.
And I haven't even discussed the new Garmin. All I can say, new Garmy is like old Garmy ...finicky, unpredictable, but a thing of beauty when it works. Like an old friend, but one that is crotchety and one you have to invest care, time and energy to maintain the relationship.
And I need to keep blogging so I can recall the details, the ups and the downs of training.