Woo hoo, another 20 miler in the books! I decided to up the ante a bit this time around and made my route include about four miles of basically UP at the very beginning. It was tough and not surprisingly, did take a toll on my legs and time, but I was glad that I went that way. I also made two decisions that made my run fun...amazingly enough.
For all of my training up until this weekend, I had been listening to music - A LOT of 2Pac, Snoop Dogg (excuse me, Snoop Lion), Method Man & Redman mixed with Papa Roach, Red Jumpsuit Apparatus and Alien Ant Farm - and that had worked well for the last few months. I kept my runs gangsta and rocked my way up the hills. However, I finally reached a point where I'd heard every song on the ipod too many times. I knew I'd hit this point when if I ever heard a song that was on my ipod while not running- on the radio, in a store, etc. - I immediately got tired as though I had been running and wanted to take a nap. So, I switched to a booktape and voilà, the time passed in warp speed.
2. Peanut Butter Sandwich Bites
So, I've been struggling (and whining) about my fruitless search for a fuel source that didn't plague me with stomach cramps or side aches and/or inspire a case of the urgent shits. I'd tried sports beans (they were the best, but still gave me a side ache), honey stinger energy chews (wowza, those combined with the pressure of a waterbelt...yikes) and Roctane GU. None really worked and I still hit the wall on long runs. However, taking a suggestion from my sister in law's husband, I made half a peanut butter sandwich, cut it up into little squares and stuffed them all into a plastic bag and that into the tiny pouch on my handheld water bottle Fortunately peanut butter sandwiches are delicious smashed or not and best part of all, I felt GREAT after eating them on the run. I pounded all the squares and probably could have brought more! This was seriously exciting as I didn't hit the wall and I felt good eating...I'd feared I'd never find anything that worked.
Those two changes made this run leagues better than my first 20 miler...particularly at the end. G met me along the run numerous times with his replenishment suite: chapstick, gum, lotion, snacks and water refills. As has become our tradition after the really long runs, he got me into the ice bath and rewarded me with a fat shrimp burrito after the ordeal. I hate to say it, but ice baths totally work. They help wildly with leg soreness and the "dead" feeling post long run; don't get me wrong, my legs were still extremely tired, but after the bath, they didn't ache or feel all that sore...just tired.
I'll detail Graham's recipe for the perfect ice bath on the next post :)