Like Week 11, Marathon Training Week 12 only had one run. Last week, I rolled my ankle, and I wanted to fully rest it before my 21-mile long run on Saturday.
I did the only thing I knew all week: CrossFit. I didn’t run. Instead, I rode Satan’s tricycle or rowed. The wall ball challenge fell by the wayside. Thursday night, I went to the last yoga class of the year to work on mobility. On Friday, I visited Dr. Pain. The good news is, I can still run, as long as I tape up my ankle. He delivered some bad news, though. I’m facing 6-8 weeks of rehab for my ankle.
Marathon Training Week 12: The 21-Miler
Saturday morning, I met up with Sweet Eureka and NP, along with two other amazing ladies. Sweet Eureka and NP planned to run 15 miles, so they would keep me company in the dark for about 7.5 miles. That was really all I wanted: company in the dark. Those two are good company. E Awesome & T planned to run 21 miles at a different pace.
I titled this post “With a Little Help from My Friends” for a reason. I had an interesting week, to say the least. It ended with four things:
- I will never, ever join Bay Area Fit’s training program. The guy who runs does not actually care about helping runners get better or stay safe. Also, truth is an absolute defense to slander.* Before you threaten someone with frivolous litigation over a Facebook post, you might want to make sure she’s not a First Amendment semi-expert.
- Anyone who thinks the qualifications “I do Zumba” and “I have daughters your age” will get me to change my mind is flat-out wrong. Especially when I see said person walking and looking miserable 11 miles into a run – and especially when I know that person is a bib-buyer.
- I had a personal breakthrough that can only be described as exhausting.
- I have a professional dilemma that needs solving.
So, with all that on my mind, I met up with Team Awesome and the Power Posse. These four ladies bolstered my spirits and provided me with hope for humanity. Running is about having fun, about moving and feeling good about it and keeping each other safe. These ladies get it, and I love them.
After warming up, Sweet Eureka, NP, and I set off at a comfortably slow pace. The first eight miles were uneventful, and we found the water jug that E Awesome had stashed for us. Then, we parted ways, and I headed to the Kemah Bridge to train my legs to run when I was tired.
By the time I hit the Kemah Bridge, I was high on the beautiful morning, caffeine, and sugar from chews. I zipped up at a much too fast pace. When I came back, I slowed. E Awesome and T were rehydrating when I passed the water jug again, so I stopped to chat with them. Then came the home stretch.
At a gas station, I bought a Gatorade. At Mile 17, I ate my Bonk Breaker. (I was hungry.) At Mile 18.5, I texted my husband: “This is the hardest thing I’ve ever done!” He texted me back: “You can do it! I’m proud of you!” I was alone with my thoughts, and my brain was starting to eat itself.
Those last 3.5 miles were the hardest of my life. I had to stop a few times. My ankle hurt. My legs felt like lead. When I finally hit 21 miles, a huge smile spread across my face.
I ran 21 miles on Saturday, the longest I have ever run. I feel accomplished, although I am still apprehensive about the marathon. On one hand, I know I can finish. On the other hand, I’m still scared. I will trust my training, go slow – and finish.
Also, I can’t thank Sweet Eureka and NP enough.
*Not legal advice.