Not all runs go well. Instead of trying to forget about this critical run gone bad I rehashed it right here so that I can look back after this marathon to recount how my training went. Let me start off by saying that training had been going superbly until this past Saturday.
I had an aggressive run planned thanks to coach. I was really looking forward to this run because I felt ready for it. I love to run long and I love to push myself. When I was "just a marathoner" I would always put in three 20 - 22 mile runs per marathon. This was standard. This time around is differnt. Up until this Saturday I had put in one 18 miler and one 20 miler making this 20 miler on Saturday rather important.
The plan was to start out easy for 3 miles. Then pick up the pace to 8 mpm for 5 miles, then pick it up to 7:40s for 4 miles, then 7:30s for 4 more miles, then 7:15s for the remaining 4 miles. I did everything to make the run go as smoothly as possible. Off to bed early, healthy eating the days leading up, a good breakfast, brought my own nutrition. I've been wearing the Nathan Belt. It has 3 good sized bottles. I love it because I can get as many liquids and gels as I could can possibly want.
So off we went at 7:am. I kinda knew I was a bit off from the start but nothing was blaringly out of wack to get worried about yet. As a matter of fact I was on perfect course until mile 16. The last mile of the 7:30 leg. I remember feeling like my legs were simply trashed. I was loosing my umph. I was dragging down my running pal Dave. I was gettingn pissed at myself for slowing down. Finally, at mile 17 he let me go. Thank God because at that point I was not sure of what I would do next.
I trudged on back to the car slowly. I thought, I'll gather myself, have a drink, and see if I can pull something out of myself. After a few minutes of rest I took off down the road. After a half mile at a 9:00 pace I realized it was not going to happen. I think it actually got colder at this point as well. My face was frozen. I turned around and said "f" it.
What I did next was another last attempt at finishing on a good note. I went home and hopped on the treadmill to try to force my legs to go faster. I got up to about an 8:45 pace. That was about it. I got in another mile at that pace and ended with 18 miles total rather than 20. Ugh! I looked like hell and Kathy told me so. Thanks! It ruined my entire day. I was totally mentally screwed for the rest of the day. Not only that I was exhausted.
After a good two days of trying to forget about this run I tried to figure out what went wrong. What was the culprit. I will say that my hamstrings felt extremely fatigued. Perhaps I did one to many straight leg dead lifts last week. Perhaps my body was actually fighting off a cold. Or, perhaps I've been under tremendous stress with life in general. Perhaps I'm just a friggin wimp. I reallly don't understand what happened.
In the end I just know that these things do happen and they can send you into a tizzy trying to figure it out. I also know that regardless of how this run went down it is just one training run in the grand scheme. I have trust in THE GRAND MASTER PLAN and know that I am still capable of having a fantastic race. Onward I say!