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Tackling 20!

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I was planning on 18 but was feeling really strong at mile 14 and decided to go for 20. I called Brandon and said, “I’m going for 20. Go buy me a bag of ice.” I felt like today was the day to get the 20 done – I was originally planning on running 20 next weekend but I have to teach classes Saturday and Sunday and was feeling stressed about also getting the run in. I wanted to do the 20 on fresh legs and not before or after I taught a class.

Backing up. I slept in until 8:30. I had nothing to do today but get the run done and the temperature was supposed to be cool all day so I didn’t have to worry about beating the heat. I had my standard pre-long run breakfast.

Black coffee and toast with almond butter, honey and sliced banana.

I started my run with a three-mile loop with Sullie.

I’m so happy that it’s getting cooler so that I can run her more. She enjoys it so much and I love having an in shape pup! 😉

I dropped Sullie off and got suited up with my Fuel Belt and gels and headed out for the rest of my run. I felt really good throughout the whole run with the exception of my calves. They were so tight for the whole entire run. I stopped and stretched them several times but they just wouldn’t loosen up. The good news is that my hamstring felt great – no pain!

I had Gu at mile 9 and a Hammer gel at mile 14. This was my first time trying the Hammer brand and I will definitely be sticking with the Vanilla Gu. I did not care for the flavor of Hammer at all. I only take gels if I’m going to be running for more than 90 minutes. It is essential for me to take in calories on the run and I cannot stomach Gatorade. I used to hate gels, they literally made me gag, but somehow I have gotten used to them. I much prefer the energy boost they provide to various chews and sports beans you can get. I’m not kidding – I can feel a noticeable increase in energy when the gels hit my system.

Happy and excited to be DONE! 20.03 miles in 3:06:06. I averaged a 9:17 pace.

I think the best part of my run was the realization that I was going to survive the Marine Corps Marathon and might even finish right at four hours – which I would be thrilled about. It would be a 45 minute PR from my first marathon. I’m not putting pressure on myself but I have felt very comfortable running at this pace throughout my training!

Jen inspired me to suffer through an ice bath when I got home. I put on a bathing suit and a hoodie and hit the tub.

It was mentally tough but I set a timer for 10 minutes and just focused on the promise of a hot shower immediately after. I’m hoping that this pays off with soreness – especially with the calf tightness. I have to teach BodyPump at 6 a.m. tomorrow and the ability to use my legs is pretty key! 😉

I was so hungry after I showered and immediately got to work putting together lunch.

I made a salad with spinach, roasted acorn squash, roasted brussels sprouts, dried cranberries, feta, pumpkin seeds and homemade balsamic vinaigrette. On the side, a buttered piece of toast. Perfect fall salad! We’ll see how long this lasts me. I will probably be making multiple trips to the kitchen to forage today!

And backing up once again…we had such a lovely evening last night. I just have to share it with you.

My sweet husband went out and purchased a fire pit for our patio yesterday. He put together this set up last night for us to grill and watch the Georgia game.

We had an outstanding dinner. I think we said to each other at least 20 times, “oh my god, this dinner is so good!” I picked up a ribeye for Brandon and Alaskan Coho salmon for me at Earth Fare.

His and hers plates! I served roasted brussels sprouts, roasted acorn squash and Great Harvest dinner rolls on the side (had to get those carbs in for my long run today!).  This dinner inspired a lengthy discussion between us about how it was worth it to splurge on high quality, natural, local or organic meat when we do purchase it.

I loved this salmon. It honestly might have been the best salmon I have ever eaten. I seasoned it with olive oil and Dizzy Pig’s Shakin’ the Tree and Ragin’ River. Brandon grilled it on the Big Green Egg and cooked it to perfection. I am so very, very thankful to have a husband who is a talented grill master! I was so spoiled by my dad’s grilling skills growing up (seriously, amazing) and I’m so happy that Brandon has taken such an interest in it.

Long post! Off to relax and rest my tired body for the rest of the day. I think I’m going to watch a movie on OnDemand while Brandon is at the Y. This might be my only chance to take a break from football all day!

{ 14 comments… add one }
  • 1
    brannyboilsover October 3, 2010, 5:41 pm

    I experimented with ice baths when training for Nashville 2010. I never really saw a benefit to them – but was never *too* sore following my long runs either. I remember sitting in that tub and playing bejeweled to pass the time. Good call on the hoodie to keep your core warm — I was never that bright!

    And I’m also dedicated to Plain and Vanilla Gu. Almost yummy!

    • 2
      Jen October 4, 2010, 2:19 pm

      Yeah, this was my first ice bath experience and it’s hard to tell if it’s actually helping speed recovery or not. My legs were really sore last night and this morning but I’m sure that I didn’t help matters much by having to teach BodyPump this morning. Wish I would have thought ahead to get a sub for my class. SO ready for the race now that the 20 is done. And I will ONLY be purchasing plain and vanilla Gu for race day! 🙂

  • 3
    Jen October 3, 2010, 9:24 pm

    Ahh great job! So smart of you to go for 20 in the middle of a good run! You were so speedy! Go you 🙂
    Isn’t the ice bath hard?!

    • 4
      Jen October 4, 2010, 2:16 pm

      The ice bath was not fun but I seriously just bundled up, set a timer and channeled you. I just kept telling myself, “this is going to be worth it in the end.” Despite the ice bath, teaching BodyPump was agony this morning. I should have gotten a sub for my class. My legs were killing!

  • 5
    Nicole - yuppieyogini.com October 3, 2010, 10:52 pm

    That’s awesome. You ran that 20 fast too! Maybe a few weeks off gave you the time you needed not only to heal, but to really rest. I’m so happy you’re feeling better!

    • 6
      Jen October 4, 2010, 2:15 pm

      Thank you so much, Nicole! Your comment brought a smile to my face remembering the panic I was going through when the injury first occurred and I was talking to you about it at BodyPump. It was great seeing you last weekend!

  • 7
    Liz October 4, 2010, 1:32 pm

    Just found your blog for the first time, I’m running MCM too! 🙂 Great job on your 20 miler…I’m doing mine in one week!

    • 8
      Jen October 4, 2010, 2:14 pm

      Yay! Love finding other MCM runners. I am so excited about the race. It will be my second marathon but first “big city” marathon. Would love to hear how your 20 goes!

  • 9
    becca October 4, 2010, 2:30 pm

    congrats on the 20-miler; that’s amazing! and a such a great pace too. that bath looks absolutely torturous! here’s hoping that it helped you out… & i love how you guys watched the game on saturday. your own mini-tailgate! will have to keep this in mind for our next game 🙂

    • 10
      Jen October 4, 2010, 2:34 pm

      Thanks Becca! The game set up was awesome. Just wish we would have won 🙁

      You guys KILLED Florida Saturday night. Amazing! Boo Gators.

  • 11
    Brittney October 5, 2010, 8:47 am

    Late in commenting, but GREAT JOB on your 20!!! So glad to hear you’re back in action and pain free! Keep rocking it- you are almost there!

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