Maybe just maybe running a half marathon, a 50k and a marathon within a month was a bit too lofty for these legs. Hmmm. The half marathon went better than expected, the 50K was hard on the stomach but I finished and the marathon is one week away. I’m so tired. I hadn’t really noticed it much until my run today. I felt very lucky to get another Mom friend of mine (who also has five children) to run with me today along one of our favorite paths, right along the Boise river. My pal is sweet and funny and amazingly fast! I only made it about three miles with her before I realized I needed to let her enjoy her workout too and do her own pace (which is about 3 min faster per mile than mine.) My first three miles were at a pace of about 9:20 ave. That was fun to see, but I knew it wouldn’t last once I let my fast pal go. I quickly ended up closer to the 10:30 range and started to relax and enjoy the scenery. It’s such a beautiful area and I couldn’t help but smile seeing all of the people fishing on the riverbank, the older couples walking along holding hands and the bicyclers zooming by at lightening speed. The weather was perfect, the trees were lush and green again and I could smell the lilacs blooming just off the path.

I ended up taking a wrong turn somewhere and ran out of path. There I was standing on the smooth stones of a riverbed, with nowhere left to run — and I still had a quarter of a mile to get in before I was supposed to head back. At first I tried to run on those huge, smooth rocks — but it was really slow going, I was out in the middle of what felt like nowhere and I was a little bit scared that a bad guy might pop out of the bushes since I hadn’t seen another soul in at least 20 minutes. So, I turned around at 7.75 ish miles and headed back.

I used the Garmin’s “back to start” feature for this, since the small path I’d been on, forked off and went in various directions. There were logs to leap over, lots of rocks and sticks and various small hills and such. I’d have normally loved being in a place like that, but I was starting to worry since I hadn’t seen my friend and I thought we’d have passed each other by this point.

It turns out, we each took a different fork in the path somewhere and both got a little adventure today seeing new things. She called me a bit later to let me know she was almost back at the car. I still had more than 3 miles to go.

I was feeling pretty beat down by this point, which is not like me on a run of this distance. Usually I’m very comfortable at the 16 mile runs and relax and enjoy the ride. Not today. I’d only taken water in my Camelbak, thinking the Gatorade I usually train with might be part of the GI problems I had at the recent ultra. I’d also brought one pack of Shot Blox. By 8 miles, I was feeling weak and tired — just drained and my feet were aching like crazy. Not normal for me, but that’s what happened today.

My right foot started feeling like it might be broken and I was having a hard time continuing on when it was aching so much. I really wanted to take off my shoes and just go wading in that beautiful, cold river.  But, I kept going, having to take a ton of walk breaks and struggling with hallucinations of Big Macs and fries in my mind. If only someone could have dangled one in front of me, I might have been able to pick up the pace again.

I finally finished the run. Not quite the 16 I had intended – but back at the vehicle. 15.8 miles. Horrible pace. My confidence bruised yet again. I have to tell you, after a run like the one today, I’m not really sure if I’m cut out for the long distances after all. I’m excited to do the marathon next week, but maybe I’m better suited for the half marathons and 10ks and such. I’m staring to wonder.

Stats: 15.8 miles. 11:50 ave pace.  3:07:10 – total time. Just. So. Tired.

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