I ran into the wall on my long run yesterday, 4kms before I was done, and in my extremely hilly city, I still had 2 major hills ahead of me. I was feeling quite unhappy and disappointed in myself when I got home when a wise friend and marathon runner told me that you have to have some bad runs in order to have good ones – true, but the bad ones still really bite. After a bit to eat and a warm shower, I wrote in my log and realized what I did wrong. I thought I would share it on the blog in case it helps anyone else.
1 - I was hungover. I make it a habit to not drink the month before the race but I am still 7 weeks out so I had a few too many on Saturday night, at the time thinking it wouldn’t be a big deal. Well it was. Dumb, dumb, dumb. No more drinking on Saturday night, or if I must, I’ll schedule my long runs on Saturday.
2 - I was tired. Five hours of sleep is not enough.
3 - I didn’t eat enough before I went out. All I had was a small whole wheat bagel and peanut butter. That was gone by the time I finished the bridge to Halifax.
4 - I didn’t eat enough during. I only brought one gel with me, which I took at about 8kms but since I didn’t eat enough before I went out, at about 14kms I was feeling very hungry, and even a bit dizzy. (although this also could have been a bit of vertigo as I was back on the bridge and it’s a bit freaky looking *way* down at the water while you’re running)
5 - I started out too fast. It was a gorgeous day and I felt pretty good starting out and eventhough my sister-in-law had just the day before reminded me to slow down because I am not good at knowing my pace (and my Garmin was working fine so I have no excuse), I kept on trucking. When I review my pace chart, the first half I was actually running close to or faster than my race pace - way too often.
I should have known better. I am glad I did this now and not a few weeks before the race because this will definitely smarten me up.
Next week is a cut back week on my schedule so I will be running less distance than this past weekend. I will also do my best to chart as flat a course as I can so I can get my confidence back. Maybe I’ll take another trip out to Winnipeg…