I started writing this on sunday last week so I apologise for the delay in posting this blog, better late than never I say.
Every weekend since the half marathon I am training at distances that are entirely new to me. My 24 km a couple of weeks ago was VERY tough (see earlier post) & last weekend I ran 26.5 km which is the furthest run that I have ever done in my life. Thankfully it was much easier on my body (& mind) than the previous week, so I am starting to feel more confident about the marathon which is only 52 days away!!
So last weekend I thought I would change it up a little and instead of running a huge lap around my local area at home, I decided to run 4 laps of the Lilyfield Bay Run (Sydney). A few friends of mine from run club have done this in their training and I thought it would be good to change the scenery and try a much flatter course than I am used to.
If I said it was easy I would be lying. The course is quite flat which is a very nice change to the hilly area back near home. Maybe this also contributed to it being a more enjoyable run, but there was a lot to keep my mind occupied and I even made friends with some people running laps in the opposite direction who were clearly as insane as me. Although I noticed a couple of them dropped off when I got to laps 3 and again on lap 4.
The weather was great, cloudy and cool so it wasn’t too crowded. On lap 4 the clouds started to look hairy and I hoped that the rain would hold off until i finished (but I had packed my light weight run jacket into my pack, just in case). Have I mentioned my Nathan hydration backpack before? Maybe not, but I definitely should because it’s great! It’s a female specific back pack and the strap on the front is adjustable which means no straps rubbing in unwanted places. It hold 2.0 litres and it’s very light weight, hardly feels like i’m wearing it and i think it makes me conscious to keep better posture and stand up tall. Win win!
For the last lap I decided to run it in reverse, that way I would change the view around me and it gave me something to look forward to while running lap 3. So on the last I ran past landmarks and said to myself “I won’t be seeing you again today”. Yes the voice in my head needed something, anything to think about that last lap as I was getting bored. It seemed to keep my mind busy, but I did stop to walk at one point (which i was angry at myself about) only it felt worse to walk so I started running again straight away.
When I rounded the last bend it was such a relief to have made it. Another new distance conquered. What an achievement!!
I found a comfy spot under a tree and laid down with my feet in the air resting up against the tree, my physio told me this helps you recover quicker and it felt great to not have any weight on my feet. I stayed in this position for about 15 minutes, and even got question by a 4 year old called Kimberly as to what I was doing. She was very cute and very surprised at my answer when she asked how far I had run today. I felt proud and happy, and…… exhausted.
Eventually I sat up and stretched my whole body from head to toe. I was a little worried about how I was going to drive home in my manual car but although I was stiff it was not too much of a problem. And I had timed it very well because no more than 5 minutes after I got back in the car it started raining.
Luck was on my side.