It's a strange thing when you start to think of something as long and grueling as 14 miles as an only. But that's exactly what I did. I guess that's the mindset you start to get in when you're training your body and mind to run 26.2 miles.
I know that the race is going to be pretty mentally challenging. This week I'm actually sorer that I was last week after my 18 mile run. That's probably because I kept up a 10:32 pace for the 14 mile run. I don't mind being sore. I even enjoy it a bit because I feel like it's the badge of having really worked my body. And getting through these long runs has really helped me prepare mentally for the task at hand. I remember my first 8k (the Shamrock Shuffle) and I thought that was long. And the first time I did a 10 K all I could think about was how I'd be running for an hour. Yesterday I ran for over 2 hours and it really didn't seem that bad.
Yesterday was the Chicago Half Marathon, and I knew quite a few people who participated. Part of me really wanted to do it so I could have the nice experience of getting a little something during this process for training - having some feedback and support and t-shirt and a medal actually helps sometimes. But in the end, I didn't want to spend the extra money. So as I said on Facebook, I ran 14 miles and some people on the South Side only ran 13.1 and got a medal. Well, I got the satisfaction of knowing that I kept up a pretty good pace (my fastest yet at this distance) and didn't even have a crowd cheering me on and nothing waiting at me at the finish line other than a cup of coffee lovingly made my Mr. H. (come to think of it, that's a pretty good incentive to run fast)
This upcoming week is the last long, long run before I have three step back weeks leading up to the marathon. I'm looking forward to the Ready to Run 20-Miler this Sunday. It will be the first time I run on the lake front path that I don't do a there and back route. Just start up north and keep going to the Museum of Science and Industry.
I'd like to thank all those who have donated to Mr. H. and me in the last week. The Reyes', Jessica, Terri and Dawn. Thank you all so much for giving. If you haven't had a chance to donate to one of us, please check out our pages:
- Johnpaul (aka Mr. H.): http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/johnpaulhiggins/chicago-marathon-2012
- Melanie: http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/melaniehiggins/chicago-marathon-2012
Running stats for week ending September 9
Miles run this week: 19
Training miles to date: 333.22
Miles left to run (including the marathon): 125.2