Sunday, August 1, 2010

16 miles of UGH!

Yesterday morning, way before the sun even thought of coming up, I headed out to meet up with the group for our Saturday long run. We all had different schedules . . . but everyone's had a common theme - 5 miles easy followed by lots of fast miles to total 15 miles for the day! Everyone except for me, that is. Mine totaled 16 miles. I know, you're thinking "what's an extra mile, Jaime?" After fifteen miles, an extra mile is eternity!!

My splits were all over the place all day! At 4:45AM, it was already 85 degrees with the humidity in the mid 90% range.

Miles 1-5 were probably the most exciting of the day since we were on a new route. The group stayed pretty intact which turned out to be a good thing because I had no idea where we were! We looped back around beside the cars at mile 4 and already had to grab some gatorade and water. I even gelled here, which is pretty early for me! I had a pretty good idea that I'd be doing very well to get in all 16 miles and that my schedule wasn't even going to be attempted (6 easy, 4 @ 8:10, 2 easy, 4 @8:00).

Miles 6-10 were the worst. I had slowed down in pace. The air was still so thick that I could have probably taken a knife to it and it wouldn't have made a difference. UGH! I was struggling mentally and was without my music. My legs were tight and I couldn't find my groove. Instead, every single mile, I could only dwell on how many more that I had. Around mile 9, I decided to try to pick up the pace. It felt good to stride out, but I was still ready to be finished.

A little after mile 10, I reached the yacht club water fountain/pool/bathroom. It turned out that mostly everyone else was struggling, too! You would have thought this was the new hang out! It was still mentally discouraging to know that I had an extra mile than everyone else. I was actually feeling much better at this point though and made my little pit stop a fast one and was on my way!

I knew that if I followed the normal course back, I would hit the starting point at 15 miles. I had debated quite a bit as to where to run this extra mile. I was pretty scared that if I ran back, I would not add it on. There was another great spot to add it on, but it was very close to the end. I could already imagine that conversation in my head (turn to make it 1.5 back to your car or keep going and you have less than 1/2 a mile left). So, around mile 12, I decided to take a small side road out half a mile and then back. This actually went by pretty quickly and I was pleased that I added it in.

After this little mile, I got back on course and noticed one of my friends walking up ahead. As I reached him, I told him to run with me in. He was ready to be finished as well and so we ran pretty hard for the last mile and half (averaged slightly under 8:00 pace). I also saw another runner friend slightly ahead and I told myself that I wanted to pass him before I finished . . . which I did, but just barely!

Overall, it was just one of those runs that I wanted over from the beginning. Luckily, I got my second wind after mile 10 but I struggled with the distance the entire time.

Total distance: 16 miles
Total time: 1:19:32 (8:44 average pace)


  1. definitely brutal conditions! i hate it when my splits are all over the place too but you finished the run. and i totally agree that at that around the 14-15 mile mark an extra mile or two feels like an eternity. way to power through :)

  2. That's still an excellent pace for a long run - nothing bad about that, especially in that heat/humidity. I think I'd suffocate in that stuff...I admire anyone who can do it! Way to get 'er done, Jamie!! :)

  3. Wow, that is ridiculously hot for so early. That's an impressive training run, great job!

  4. I am so inspired by your determination. Keep it up!