Prep: I trained using a plan from Runners Connect which peaked at ~42 miles. I followed it EXCEPT for:
- One week skiing (I only did one brief run that week)
- 2 illnesses: flu/rona + a cold, which I had 3 weeks apart. I only missed 2-3 runs with each of these, but they were annoying! Luckily, I was totally healthy for this race.
I did long runs up to 15 miles.
Last few days: I tapered big-time! Very short/easy runs this week. I ate a lot of carbs. I did not calculate actual grams but I definitely ate far more than usual (bagels, gatorade, pretzels). I did eat pizza/bday cake which is not exactly how one is supposed to carb load (too much fat!) but hey, it was a bday party.
Fueling during race: I used Skratch gummies, taking in about ~5 gummies (~20g carb) every 3 miles. I took water or sports drink at EVERY stop (IT WAS HOT). Mostly water up until mile 8 or so and then I switched to whatever they were handing out which was . . . okay. I felt VERY well-fueled for this race. And I did notice a little uptick in performance every time I took in more sugar. Possibly psychological but I’ll take what I can get.
Conditions: Hot and sunny. The first few miles the sun wasn’t up yet, and those weren’t bad. The LAST 4 were brutal – sun beating down, no shade, ~73F and 80% humidity, and a (WARM) headwind. Yuck! I kept saying “only a 4 mile training run left! only a 5K left! only a 2 mile run left” etc. But I definitely felt quite challenged the last 4 miles or so.
Of note, it was SO crowded at the start (and NOT ENOUGH BATHROOMS OMG) that I almost didn’t make it onto the course on time! We left our house at 4:30; our babysitter who is amazing arrived at 4:15 (!).
Overall: I was super happy with this race!! The conditions were pretty tough, or at least definitely not optimal. But I ran faster than Jan 2020 (and those conditions were ideal). So yes, training works! And I am excited to do more of it!!! But first . . . hopefully a loooooong nap.
Josh had a rougher day – he did amazing for the first 10.5 miles and then had a cramp and slowed down significantly toward the end (I mean, his time of 1:41 is still beyond my wildest dreams but he is capable of much faster). AND my super fast friend came in as second woman (!!!). (I told you she is super fast! Amazing + inspiring.)
Thanks to all who cheered me on virtually + wished me luck! And CHELSEA wins the race prediction award (sorry there is no prize but I am impressed)!
Oh! And here’s a rather unflattering pic, haha: