I've always kept an open mind with my training and like to stay as open as I can to shifting things around. This week was a prime example of what I'm so flexible. On Wednesday, the day that has become my long run day, the weather was awful. It was humid beyond belief -- the heat index was near 110 in the afternoon. Thankfully some storms rolled through to cool things off, but they came at a time that I would usually run. Earlier in the day I made the decision to cut my long run by at least half and just do it over the weekend. When the threat of storms grew, I was forced to cut things even shorter, only getting in 3.1 miles. By moving my long run to today, little did I know I would be greeted with low humidity and temperatures in the mid-60s at 6:15 a.m. Awesome would be an understatement considering how hot and humid it has been in recent weeks.
I ended up having a good 12.4-mile run without having to take a water bottle with me for a change. I ran 4.2 miles with my dog, stopped at home, took a gel, drank some water and headed back out. About three miles later I stopped at a water fountain at some local baseball fields. I then ran a big hill, looped around the Elks National Home and got some more water a mile later. It set me up well for the final 3 miles or so. While I'd like to be faster, I did today's run in less than 2 hours, which is actually 4 minutes faster than last week's 12-mile run in the heat.
I have some work to do on my long runs, and next week I'll be doing the Lynchburg Half Marathon that should help get some speed work in on a distance run. It's not a race ... at least that's what I have to keep telling myself. I'm in a much better place with my Richmond Marathon training than I was the first time I did this. I have more miles overall, my longer runs are already longer, I'm faster even though I feel slow, my weight isn't as high and I think I have a better attitude about this.
Less than 98 days to go!