I woke up bright and surly on Saturday morning, hoping to get my 18 miler in before it got too hot and humid - and to leave plenty of time to shower before Jack's swimming lesson. I dosed myself liberally with Body Glide, hydrated well, and took off.
Three hours, 22 minutes later, it became apparent that really, there wasn't anything I could have done to avoid that humidity. My clothes were so soaked in sweat that I could literally wring them out. It looked like I'd been swimming, and my skirt clung to my legs. I had painful chafing on my chest and back from my sports bra and on my thigh from my (still awesome) new Amphipod.
This incredibly sexy result aside, it was a really good run and left me feeling strong. Even though I'm a member of Club 26.2, the fact that I can run 18 miles at all makes me really proud. I also did an experiment to see if I could keep up a solid average pace and still walk at water stops. When I was approaching my house and my mom's (my two designated places), I picked up the pace for about a 1/4 mile, stopped and walked while I drank and refueled, then picked up the pace again for that 1/4 mile back. My pace for the miles including breaks is definitely slower, but other splits are faster. I don't know; I think it works for me.
My focus has improved, too. I only took two walk breaks beyond those for water, one of which was because I gave myself a gigantic hill at mile 17. I definitely want to include some hills in my training, especially in anticipation of the Bix, but my marathon is not a hilly one, so there is no need for me to force myself to run hills while fatigued. When I do my next 20 miler on Sunday, that loop is going to be one of the first ones, not the last.
And now for those splits. The goal pace for this run was 10:46. Here's how I did:
Mile 1: 10:13
Mile 2: 10:24
Mile 3: 10:21
Mile 4: 10:31
Mile 5: 10:44
Mile 6: 10:24
Mile 7: 12:24 (walk/water/Gu break)
Mile 8: 10:24
Mile 9: 10:07
Mile 10: 11:55 (walk/water/Sport Bean break)
Mile 11: 10:48
Mile 12: 10:54
Mile 13: 13:09 (walk/water/Gu break)
Mile 14: 10:37
Mile 15: 10:51
Mile 16: 10:46
Mile 17: 13:30 (the aforementioned hill)
Mile 18: 11:08