Mike and I raced the Cheshire ½ marathon on Sunday. Mike was a last minute entry. I convinced him that a little speed racing is the best thing for a sub-20 hour 100 mile run. I don’t think he was quite convinced but he had a great race and surprised himself. He didn’t surprise me. I knew he would run well. He has been logging minimum 80 mile run weeks and not just sloggy miles but doing some pick-ups and speed intervals. With a 2:55 marathon last year, I was sure he’d be able to stay with me. So, off we went together...Anders with Nana and Papa on the race course. Mike helped keep me from running too fast in the beginning as I tend to go out a bit harder than I should. We slowly began to pick up the pace around mile 4 and kept it steady with Mike constantly reminding me to eat and drink. I attempted a bit of a different eating plan this race which ended up wreaking havoc on my stomach. Mile 9 and 10 were painful with my stomach doing flips though it was good to experience as I know that I have to work out a new plan next race (that happens to be Sunday!). Triathlon is much different as I can eat real food (dates and nuts) and drink coconut water until the run then I just banana it with maybe a swig of coke at the later miles of the marathon. Can’t do that with straight up running. I am moving at a much higher heart rate and need to keep my source of calories simple and accessible. I definitely do not have an iron stomach. Mike could eat a massive salad and run perfectly comfortable. Jealous!
We finished up the race pretty much together. Mike was only about 10 feet behind me. I enjoyed crossing the line in first and while my time is quite a distance from where I think I should be it is a step in the right direction clocking a 1:22. Every race gets me more excited to work harder. Next weekend I am running a marathon but not an ‘i’m going for it superhero style’ type marathon. This is a training marathon with the goal of simply breaking 3-hours. All that means is I have to hold onto 6:51 pace. I know I have that in me for 20 miles though unsure how my body will hold up for the last 6 miles. The goal is to run 6:40s for as long as I possibly can. I think that will give me a nice buffer if my body decides we aren’t ready for 26.2 though even if I feel unbelievable, I cannot let myself run fast until after 22 miles. I think the hardest part will be fueling and holding back in the beginning. I have to keep reminding myself that this is a training run - building a strong base. I hope to finish knowing I could have run faster. I would prefer not to be crushed and in a heap on the grass praying for mercy so just break 3hours. That’s it.