My long run this weekend was strange. This “strange” has been a constant in every long run I’ve done in this marathon training period though.
They’ve been fine. I was able to run a long run and be ok at the end. And I didn’t use to run my long runs: they used to be a “let’s go slow so we can last a lot of miles” thing. I now even think about pace! It’s wild, I know.
1- I think I am in great shape. I am not crosstraining or anything so all I can adjudicate this to is the speedwork. I am also running in minimalist shoes in my easy days and doing drills I coach with.
2- I needed these long runs. I didn’t do a Spring marathon this year, and didn’t train at all for last year’s NYCM so I haven’t done long runs since early (as in February) last year!!! That’s 16 months! I am now I happy I GET to do long runs.
3- My mileage is up. And I didn’t/don’t plan it. It just keeps happening. I hover around 35-40 miles every week and it feels like my old 25 miles. Also not sure how, I am still doing just 4 runs a week, but 4 easy miles just doesn’t do it. My little 4-5 miles recovery or easy run, is now 6 to 8 miles. That’s some addicting habit right there!
4- I am doing a lot of miles at uncomfortable pace. I used to hate anything with 8:xx minute miles on it. I’d do 7s on races and speedwork, and 9s on long runs, and waaay over 10 on easy and recovery. I’d never ever do 8 (only in the marathon!!!). Last Saturday I did a 10 miler, at 8:07 average. Sunday I did a 7 mile recovery also in the 8s. Hello uncomfortable! And thank you.
5- I am eating a LOT less before long runs. Apparently, I didn’t need 5000 calories before a run (bye jar of nutella!); I am now lighter during the run, and I have enough energy cause I am fitter.
My long runs these year have been great. I don’t even feel them. That can’t be normal. Right?
All these workouts have left no time in the calendar for my hill sprints though. But, Berlin is flat (and there’s enough hills in the Central Park already) so I think that will be ok for now. Speaking of, with 41 days to go, I think it’s time to book a flight and a hotel. Quite probably, at this point, I’ll have to run there and sleep under the Bradenburg Gate!!
What have you done recently that has made your running better?