I will not be earning my marathon training merit badge. Or at least, I haven't been on that track for the past 2 weeks. I had my glorious 7-miler the Sunday before last and then got in a tiny bit during the week. I was supposed to do 8 last weekend, but I was in a Girls on the Run training session (which I'm super excited about!) for 8 hours and spent 10 hours driving, so I decided to push it to Monday. It was raining cats and dogs on Monday. Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday afternoons got packed before I could speak up, and that led us straight up to this weekend.
I decided that I just needed to get up and run 9 miles this morning. Get back on track.
I was totally unprepared. I had a few dehydrating beverages last night, my iPod needed charging, my GU Chocolate Outrage stash was depleted, my favorite running socks were hiding at the bottom of a laundry basket of clean clothes, and it turns out, I had no idea what temperature to dress for. (I'm really bad at paying attention to the weather forecast. Last night, the guy on the news said it was about to warm up. I listened. I just pulled on shorts, a tank top, and a long sleeve dri-fit, thinking I'd loose the sleeves a mile in. I was still wearing it at mile 4 when I noticed the puddles I ran by were frozen over. Apparently the warm up hasn't started yet.)
I knew it was time for 9 miles though. I went out the door with confidence and visualized myself calling my mom and my marathon partner afterwards with my successful news of a great run.
It worked. It was a great run- 9 miles, not fast or anything, but not painful in the least. It's almost a little scary how great I felt and feel now.
As I mentioned last time, I don't plan on ever running more than 7 miles again without some kind of fuel. Since I was out of GUs, I dug around in my running basket and found a package of Power Bar Strawberry Banana Energy Gel Blasts (what a mouthful!) from an old race pack that I decided to try out.
I can't really review this product accurately, because apparently, at some point, I had left these gel blasts in a position to be melted. (Back seat of my car, perhaps?) Around mile 4, when I opened the package, instead of finding 9 neat little gel blasts, I discovered one giant clump of gummy material.
The task before me was to consume what looked and felt like a small jellyfish jammed inside a plastic package without breaking stride. Fortunately, I was on the outskirts of town at this point and there were no passer-byers to gawk at me while I tore off pieces of the hunk with my teeth like a wild animal. It was kind of ridiculous.
It had the intended effect, however, and it was as tasty as something resembling a jellyfish could be. I ate in a couple different segments over miles 4-7 with a little water in between, and I had energy all the way through. (Even the last 3.5 miles, which I, (gasp!), ran without my iPod, since it died because it wasn't fully charged.)
Anyway, I think I've tested fate long enough and intend to actually get back on my regular training schedule now. Just registered!