Aug 1, 2011

Long Training Run Number Seven: 16 Miles

Time flies when you're having fun!  I can't believe that I have two races coming up in the next couple of months!   The Disneyland Half Marathon is about a month away and the Long Beach Marathon is about five weeks away!  I am already getting nervous but that's the way that I am.  I am happy to say that my running buddy Shawna and I were finally able to get together for a long run.  We decided to run on Saturday instead of Sunday because she was  heading to Vegas.  I am so glad that I ran with her on Saturday because it mysteriously rained like crazy all Sunday morning. I would have been pretty irritated if I had to run 16 miles in the humid, wet weather!

Shawna and I were so nervous about our long run the night before.  Can you tell by the text messages??

Weather Report: 63 degrees and really nice!

I had the honors of mapping out our long run this week and with Shawna's stamp of approval we went for it.  I really love running in Bonelli Park because the change of scenery kinds of motivates me because it's something new. I get bored looking at the same old trees, buildings and streets every time I go for a run in the neighborhood! So here's what we did on Saturday:
The plan was to run 16 miles at marathon pace (9:05-9:09) and minimize stopping whenever possible.  We can't do much about the traffic signals and it's pretty hard to run 16 miles without hitting a few stops. Shawna has been working on minimizing the amount of stops she makes during her runs so I warned her that I was going to be on her! I make her nervous, I know I do.. but she is an awesome runner so I like to see her challenge herself every once in a while! She is one of those runners who doesn't really have to try too hard  to PR but swears she is slow. She recently did the Camp Pendleton Mud Run so I thought I would give her some kudos here and brag about her. Her team actually came in fourth place! She hates this picture for reasons that I won't mention, but I think it's pretty cool!

The Camp Pendleton Mud Run 2011

Okay, sorry for the interruption. Now back to our long run for the week.  We met at our usual spot at 6:00am!  We were determined to beat the heat and get an early start so that Shawna could head on out to Vegas. Mother Nature was very good to us and the weather was really nice until the last couple of miles when it started to warm up.

Mile 1: 9:01
Mile 2: 9:08
Mile 3: 9:08
Mile 4: 9:01
Mile 5: 9:03
Mile 6: 8:54

We really focused on pacing ourselves and getting a feel of what it will be like to keep our goal pace for the Long Beach Marathon.  There were times where we really felt like stepping it up but we held back and maintained  our goal pace.  We  GU'd at Mile 6 and kept our stops to a minimum.  I think Shawna could tell that I was keeping our GU and water stops really short but she did thank me for it later. 

Mile 7: 9:06
Mile 8: 9:03
Mile 9: 8:56
Mile 10: 9:06

When we reached Mile 8, we were pretty relieved because that was the highest elevation point of our run and we could feel that climb!  Shawna didn't tell me this, but her Dad was waiting for us at Mile 8 with some ice-cold bottles of water.  This was the first time that I met him and boy is he sweet. Shawna always tells me what a great person her Dad is and now I know why.  Not only does he have five marathons and six half marathons under his belt, but he is such a trooper! He once rode Shawna's pink bike beside her during a long run  (his bike had a flat), so that he could keep her company and carry her water. Dad on a pink bike...priceless!

Thanks for the water Dad..

and the photo too!
We snapped Dad's photo and he snapped ours and off we went.  We were feeling pretty good at the half-way mark and our pacing was right on target. We took a much needed GU break at Mile 12 and toughed out the last four miles.

GU saves us every time!
Mile 11: 8:48
Mile 12: 8:54
Mile 13: 9:06
Half Marathon Point: 1:57
Mile 14: 8:46

Bonelli Park was full of cyclists and lots of other runners on Saturday. I thought it was really cool how the passing runners were so encouraging!  We gave each other high-fives and words of encouragement and that really got us motivated and pumped up in the end when we were starting to feel the burn.  When we reached Mile 13, we were ready to be done, but the presence of the other runners really kept me going. It was kind of like that feeling you get when you are running a race. You know what I am talking about.

Mile 15: 8:41
Mile 16: 8:46

This looks like a mountain when you are tired!
Miles 15 and 16 were a little tough because it was all uphill and we were tired. This was our longest run to date but we hung in there because we know that these training runs are only going to get longer and longer!!

Check out Shawna finishing up Mile 16. She was watching that Garmin and just couldn't wait to hear the last lap alert.  I love it when we are running and she counts down the number of lap alerts until we are done! She did a great job and I know she was feeling good about it!  Unfortunately, 16-mile runs and Vegas vacations don't really mix but I love her commitment to the sport!

When Shawna got home from our run, she sent me a picture message telling me that her Dad was just about to leave the house to meet us at Mile 16 with cold fruit on ice. I guess we finished sooner than he thought we would so he was impressed with us! I had that image of cold fruit dancing around in my head all the way home! I guess I was getting hungry!

Here's a little note for Dad: Thank you for thinking of us!  We are planning to run 18 miles in a couple of weeks so we will give you a call when we are almost done so that we don't miss out on the snacks next time :)

I have to say that it was a great week for me!  I ran 32 miles for the week and had a great 16-mile run on Saturday! July was a 116 mile month for me too! Yippee!! I am really proud of myself!

I think I over celebrated my accomplishments this weekend too! Oh well, I deserve a reward once in a while for meeting my goals!

I love ice cream!
I spent some time with my family on Saturday and had a great time playing around with hot pink lipstick and celebrating my niece's "Unbirthday."  Taite is visiting from Florida and since we won't be able to celebrate her 7th birthday with her in September, we decided to give her a surprise "Unbirthday" Party before she leaves back to Florida on Tuesday.  I think we confused the heck out of the poor kid but she went along with it! She wasn't about to refuse birthday presents and chocolate cake! We are all going to miss her dearly until she comes back to California again for Christmas.l
Meet Taite, my beautiful niece!
My Crazy Family! 

My beautiful daughter, Dominique and I!
I ran all of my errands on Sunday and treated myself to some ice cream and a relaxing spa pedicure! Next week is not going to be so great for my marathon training because I have plans that are going to keep me from putting the miles in. It's going to be well worth it though!  I can't give you any details because I might ruin a big surprise for someone but I will tell you all about it next week.  Have a great week and I hope you are meeting your weekly fitness goals too!

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