A good marathon training program is defined by one long run a week. Usually a Saturday or a Sunday. They begin early in the training program at about 7 miles (depending on experience and fitness ) and gradually climb up to 20 miles and beyond. Because of the road trip to Portland my marathon program derailed. Big time.
After 3 weekends without a long run, I attempted to get my training back on track this week. Tuesday was awful. Wednesday good. Thursday mediocre and laced with snot rockets. Friday off, and Saturday is the long run. I wasn’t hoping for anything stellar. I thought, You know, I just need to get the miles under my belt and be done.
I thought ahead and bought a variety of Gu packets for refueling. If you’ve never had it, it’s a little bit like a cross between a liquid Cliff bar and cake frosting. I would even consider frosting a cupcake with the stuff and market it as a GuCake. I also made sure my favorite socks and running shorts were clean and ready to go. The running gods were on my side. I had a hella-excellent run. I did 20 miles at a consistent 8:45/mile pace.
While 20 miles isn’t the 26 miles 385 yards that makes a marathon, I have more confidence as I head into my next week of training.