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16 Miles O’Fun

47

August 24, 2012 by Katie

Happy Friday!!!! Again, I think we all feel the opposite today: you’re excited it’s Friday and I’m sad that it means one day closer to summer being over! Ahhhhh! Haha oh well, it can’t last forever!

For those of you who follow me on twitter and instagram, you probably know I had a 16 miler that I needed to run last weekend, and I had to do it on Monday because of my schedule last week. I had wanted to do it on Saturday morning with some other girls at HLS, but legs and knees were soooooo sore from my hike on Thursday that I knew it just would not have been a good idea!

Since I got in late Sunday night I decided to just not set an alarm and then get up, get ready, and go whenever I woke up. I ended up heading out around 8:20am, which I was fine with since it was pretty cool on Monday. I actually got really excited when I saw it might rain! Although as I headed down the lakefront path towards Navy Pier it was very windy and started to rain and I could hear the thunder in the distance. At that point I turned around a little early and decided to head further North than I’d planned.

photo 1

So far this all sounds nice and jolly, but let me tell you: it was ROUGH. My legs were exhausted from all the walking around I had done all weekend, and tons of it on Sunday with Sara! It was a blast but definitely not the best idea for a pre-long run day (learned my lesson for the marathon: mom and dad I will NOT be walking around Chicago! Perhaps Molly can pull a skate board that I can sit on…).

Anyway, by about mile 3 I felt like I had already run 12 miles. I had to really push myself mentally to get through the run. At 4.5 miles I stopped for a Cliff Shot. I picked this up at a water station the week before during my CARA run because I wanted to try Vanilla (and I’m cheap). I loved this flavor!!

photo 2

I also took another one around mile 9. I try and get in fuel started at 4.5 miles, and then each 4 miles or so after that. So far I’ve only gotten up to about 300 calories of fuel (100 3 times) but we’ll see what I do for the 18 miler. This is crazy – haha I used to barely take 1 for my long runs. I actually discussed this with a friend at HLS this weekend. I used to count long run days as “extra calorie burning” days. I’d actually try and take in LESS calories these days because I didn’t want to counteract everything I was burning.

Um SERIOUSLY?!!? Yes, that is beyond insane. No wonder I hit a wall during my first half marathon training and started binge eating. I was starving for food! This is a great thing that has come out of running for me: I learned that if I want to run, enjoy the run, and do well then I need to actually take care of my body rather than torture it and myself. I’ve learned from both Annette and Ashley (LOVE my blog friends) about loving myself and eating well to fuel my workouts!

Annnnyway, tangent over. Just thought that might be helpful to some of you out there to know you’re not alone! Around mile 11 I passed an open bathroom on the lakefront, so I decided to stop in and was inspired by Janae to take a photo in the bathroom. You’re welcome. It was a much needed breather, but I had to get back out there since the sun was coming out and I needed to finish!

photo 5

I had 3 cliff shot blocks starting at mile 12, and I finished them off around mile 13. What I love about those is they taste like gummy candy to me and I can slowly eat them over a mile! I think: “Just go .25 more miles and you get one!” haha.

Finally, I FINISHED!!!

photo 2 (1)

And I immediately sprawled out in the grass. I. Was. Ex. Hausted. Yes, that needed to be split into two words.

photo 3 (1)

See that smile? That’s a strained smile. I wanted to just take a nap right there. However, I had to pull myself up because people were walking in the park and I didn’t want to alarm anyone that I was dying… The run was definitely very tough, although I think it was a mental battle. Yes, my legs were tired but I was in no way injured or had any pain. I was just running on tired legs with no group there to keep up my spirits! I missed them!

Oh, and because I’m sure you love all my pictures, here’s a pretty one I snapped right after I finished!

photo 1 (1)

Anyway, I stretched out in the grass and then walked my butt back to my apartment where I made a super quick shake with 1 T PB2 and 1 T Sunwarriror Vanilla Protein powder to get something in my system. Then I showered and put on this fancy outfit because I had places to be!

photo 4 (1)

Yep. Compression pants. In public. I ate a quick breakfast #2 (#1 was 1 slice Udi’s bread with PB before my run – no banana because I had no groceries) and then headed out the door! After an exhuasting morning I was not prepared for what came next: I had to pick up my brother’s car from O’Hare, one of the airports here, and then drive south about 2 hours to meet my sister-in-law’s sister to pick up Molly. Simple, yes? NO.

It took TWO HOURS to get to car! The bus ride downtown and then the L out to the airport took way longer than I thought and then I got soooooo very lost in the airport trying to find the shuttle out to economy parking. Let’s just say that when I called my brother for help I was staring at a map near tears. I’m sure my exhaustion had nothing to do with the irrationality of that…

Luckily I found the car (and the key taped underneath… we won’t go there) and headed out to get MOLLY!!!!! I made great time and was excited to talk to Liz and John, who’d taken care of her all week! We called it “Camp” and to be quite honest I’m pretty sure she really misses them, she had attention all day long AND a backyard! Lucky gal.

I loaded Molly up and we headed home – arriving in Chicago a little after 7!

photo 5 (1)

WHEW! It was a long day. But I did it. And then I slept. Oh, and ate a lot all day… the gas station where I stopped probably thought I was insane when I inhaled a bag of (non-soy sauce) jerkey and string cheese in about 2.5 seconds. So good.

 

Do you prefer running in a group or alone?

How do you fuel your workouts?


47 comments »

  1. Congrats on your 16 miler! I would have stopped at 10 and turn around home with the thunder. Im a big baby. I love your tank top. I like running by myself because I dont want to slow people down so I prefer running alone for my long runs. However if I am doing a 3 or 4 mile I like to run with people who are a tad faster than me to challenge myself. Have a great Friday.

  2. Congrats on sticking it out to the end when you were so tired!! I honestly CANNOT wait until I can just go do a 16-mile run on a regular day (but I know that I need to build up to it, so I’m really trying to be patient!!) – I hope you know that you’re very inspirational. (Great message about fuelling too – I’ve definitely been guilty of it, but am trying to work hard to correct my ways with every increasing-distance long run). Hope you have a fabulous weekend!! :)

  3. Congrats! The more difficult longer runs will make you stronger. No matter how well trained you are for the marathon the last 3+ miles will be tough mentally and physically. Pushing through your other runs will prepare you for that and make it easier to keep running on race day!!

    I’ve never been much of a group runner but I really would like that to change! At first I was worried it was an anti-social thing but I like cycling in groups. Maybe I’m just used to years and years of running alone? Or I just like to be crazy and wake up at 5 to do my long runs, I don’t know many running groups that start that early!

    • I keep thinking that during my runs: keep going because the marathon will be MUCH harder! And I used to be very worried about running with a group, but now I love it, as long as get my solo runs in during the week! And I wake up at 4:45 so I can eat before our runs, we start at 6am!

  4. congrats on a great run, I am glad you are figuring out fueling. it is tough to find how your body will respond. the long runs are where you really learn

  5. You’re my inspiration!!!! haha I just signed up for a half marathon :) Nice job on the run!!

  6. Erin says:

    Great job powering through! Sometimes when that happens you should give yourself permission to go as slow as you want. Just tell yourself it’s time on your feet you’re after. It’s good prep for marathon day!

  7. Congratulations! I couldn’t even get through a 3 mile run yesterday because I had walked for an hour the night before, and I was still sore from my runs earlier in the week. I hope that I build up a tolerance soon!

  8. Congrats on the run! That’s awesome! I am finding out the same things this time around – I need to fuel in the days before long runs too! During runs on my last half I used Gu gels which I liked. I picked up the new Gatorade chews at the grocery store this week because I am curious how well they work. If they are good I might use them more often since they’re so much cheaper! I’ve also been experimenting with a water/gatorade mix during my runs. I got so dehydrated during my last Half, that I bonked about midway through and struggled to the finish. I don’t want that to happen this time, especially since my training this time has been in the summer instead of the winter.

    • I read a review on the gatorade chews by Meghann on Meals and Miles, apparently they are cheaper but they are also only 100 calories in 6 chews, whereas the other brands are 100 in just 3 chews, which is why they are half the price! And I need to figure out hydration – I HATE gatorade but I need to learn to drink a bit while running because it’s much better for getting electrolytes!

  9. Ashley says:

    Strong work on the run girl! What a day – whew! Learning how to fuel for long runs is quite an art, but that’s awesome you’re recognizing what your body needs. :)

  10. hemingwayrun says:

    Excellent work on your miles! Well done!

  11. Cara says:

    I am 6 months preg so I don’t run anymore (i could, but I would rather do low impact) After I found out I was pregnant, my husband and I changed our diet and incorporate Isagenix superfood nutrition. I swear it is the reason I am still able to have energy to workout! I am actually doing a challenge on my blog- you should check it out!
    Enter The 30 Day Cleanse Challenge!

  12. commitcomplete says:

    I eat shotbloks every 7-8 miles. Before I run, I eat almond butter on bread or on pretzels.

  13. Congrats on finishing your 16 miler! It’s actually probably a good thing that you got in a run when your legs weren’t feeling so hot because any practice you can get with running on tired legs will help you during the marathon. (That’s what I always try to tell myself on days when my legs hurt starting at mile 1.)

    Have a great weekend!

  14. Congrats, 16 miles is a great accomplishment! I prefer running alone…but it’s nice to switch it up occasionally and run with a friend (as long as we’re sort of at the same pace)

  15. i LOVE your shirt!!!! i want some tank tops that have sayings like that on them so badly, but have yet to find any good ones anywhere.

    my favorite running fuel is the cappucino Hammergels – they taste like chocolate frosting and have 50 mg of caffeine which is a nice little boost. i used to just eat sour jelly bellies on my runs but i had to stop to eat them because i didn’t want to choke, so i started using gel packets- which are surprisingly way less disgusting that you’d think!

  16. Woohoo! Way to go, girl! 16 miles is super impressive, especially since you did it without your group.

    I’ve been mid-run fueling with Gatorade G Series Pro Carb Energy Chews. THEY ARE SO GOOD. Seriously. They’re also full of all sorts of chemically business, which is normally not my thing, but I got six packets of the chews for free, soo…yeah. Haha. I’m cheap too :) But yeah, I love how they taste, they don’t upset my stomach, and it’s not weird or hard to eat them while I’m running. Win win win. Staying fueled during a run is SO important, and I wish more people (cough myrunningbuddyfortheChicagoHalf cough) would realize that. Yeah, these crazy long runs are great for burning calories, but especially on long runs you’re burning an ABSURD amount of calories. You are never, ever going to recover from your run if you don’t properly fuel. What you put in your body determines what you’re going to be able to get out of it on your runs, which means if you’re not putting anything in, you’re not going to get much out of your runs. I don’t really know why I’m writing all of this here because you clearly seem to have learned this lesson while my friend clearly HAS NOT (which makes me sooo angry. I hate what she’s doing to herself, but she doesn’t listen :( ), but yeah. /endrant. Haha.

  17. onehealthymunchkin says:

    Congrats on your long run! I was seriously beat after last weekend from all the walking and workouts – so I have no idea how you managed to push yourself through 16 miles! Serious props Katie! :D Also I loved your discussion about fueling here. So so so important! I’ve never run long enough to need it, but I know I’m definitely going to be smart about it if/when I up my mileage. I like the idea of fueling with dried fruit so I might try that!

    • I have some friends who use dates! I’d love to try it, but my digestive system can sometimes react badly to dried fruit… Haha don’t want any issues on long runs so I might experiment with that after the marathon!

  18. That’s definitely an intense workout!

    I’ve realized how necessary fuel is before/during workouts – I work out first thing in the morning, and I used to never eat anything beforehand, even when I had a particularly long/tough workout ahead of me. No wonder I’d be struggling to finish by the end of it – my body had absolutely nothing to work with!

    Now, before a workout I usually have half an energy bar, a homemade energy ball or a date with almond butter so I have something in my stomach beforehand. Makes a huge difference in my energy!

  19. WOW! NICE work on the 16-miles!! That is AWESOME!

    What a day-wow. You’re impressive. Also, you’re so right– we NEED to fuel right for our workouts. That is NOT a time to skimp. I can’t wait to fuel all day long today for tomorrow. hehe :)

  20. That view brings back such fond memories! I used to run that path all the time when I was in medical school at Northwestern! Awesome job on your 16 miler :)

  21. Cate says:

    Way to go for making it through a tough run Katie! I just did 16 miles this past weekend too and it wasn’t easy, but finishing and saying you ran that distance feel awesome, right?!
    I usually run by myself and enjoy listening to my current audiobook or just thinking. I do like running with other people on occasion though, it can be fun to chat and run with other people, plus it helps you push through the tough parts if someone else is there with you.

    I have tried a few different things to fuel buy Honey Stinger chews are my absolute favorite! they taste great and are easy to chew and swallow while moving. I have also used fig bars or dried fruit which work really well too.

    Cute tank top too! :)

  22. Great job on your run! I would have been sobbing hysterically if I was frustrated after a 16 miler- we’ve talked before about my irrationality, correct?

  23. Emily says:

    Congratulations on your awesome run! I don’t think I would have been able to handle those frustrations after such an exhausting morning- I admire you for staying so positive! And reading about your training always inspires me…I’m just beginning training for a half-marathon and it’s a tad overwhelming! I usually run alone but I’m actually joining up with a big group at Lululemon tomorrow morning for the weekly run that they host- I’m excited!
    And YAY for picking up Molly! I love seeing your pictures of her. (:

    • Congrats on half training!!! The key to not getting overwhelmed is DONT look far ahead on your training plan! Put it in your calendar once and then just look at each week. Looking at the long runs in the future are what make it so scary! I hope you had fun with Lululemon!

  24. Geesh girl, what a ridiculously long day. Way to push through the run girl. I know how hard mental games can be.. no fun!

    Have a wonderful rest of the weekend :)

  25. this post is exactly what i needed to read – i promise i’ll fuel better for my long runs in the future. you’ve convinced me :) though i definitely don’t under-eat on long run days, i probably way overeat because i still pull the “i ran a lot, i can definitely eat this burger. and this cake. and these fries. oh you want to share a cupcake?” lol. hope your last days of summer are awesome!

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