well, every 4th week we had planned on making an easy week and this one is it. thursday i ran 6 and sunday was 13.
the time off really helped my speed. last weekend i didnt have much speed going on, but a ton of miles. the opposite was true this weekend. the 6 was pretty uneventful, i got dropped off 6 miles from home and ran back. yeah!
the thirteen had three interesting things. all three i should remember for a long time. i got all prepped for the run as usual. advil, bandages, body glide, knee brace, clothes. i didnt go with the 5 hour energy drink this time. i am going to save it for runs over 13 or when i am totally feeling dragged out.
so the run started later in the day - i knew i was going to finish in the dark. set out my 3 water breaks on a course that was out and back for 13 miles. the run started well, but i had just drank a full bottle of gatorade and at the first water stop at mile 2 i had to pee... so there are some nice bushes there and that solved that. but! there were also mosquitoes there. it was about 70 degrees and overcast and the little buggers where all over in the bushes. so i did the running hopping pee thing. glad nobody was around for that. but i got out alive, maybe 3 bites and i drank some water and off running again.
my knee brace itched. which it never does. figured i had a bit of dirt or something in there. i ignored it and ran on to the next water stop at mile 4. ( i put the waters at 2,4,6 miles and then run out to about 7 miles and come back giving me drinks every 2 miles ) at mile for everything was going well. i was really fresh still and picked up the pace. ran a bit faster. sooner or later i end up paying for that, but i felt pretty good so i kept going. the knee still itched so i adjusted the brace and didnt find anything in it. trot trot trot into the sun set. for once there was no wind too, how nice. :-) until mile 5. there was a storm through in the last few days and the roads flooded. they were still flooded and you had to run do the middle line of a two lane road with speed limits at 55 mph. so you are pretty paranoid about getting whacked by a car. but, the really bad part was the water. it had sat there for a few days... and spawned about 1.7 trillion mosquitoes! well, i think there might have been more, but only 1.7 trillion could get up enough energy to attack me. it was INSANE. more extreme than the canada adventure races or the michigan swamp tour races. i had water at mile 6 but i didnt stop, they were so thick. they could land on your legs and at this time i was freakin moving. did 3 of my fastest ever miles. and they followed me out and back to the 5 mile mark again. then poof gone. i didnt drink on the way back either obviously. just left the full bottle sitting there for the pickup later that night. so that was number one event. the mosquito clouds.
the run from 5 back to 0 was a some of the most relaxing running in a long time. was going fast but not very hard to do. breathing was very moderate but i was moving pretty quick. the sun set behind me and the wind and mosquitoes stayed away. my knee went from itchy to burning, but at that point i didnt care any more. number two event happened when i got home. i checked the time and it was the fastest ever half marathon for my by over 5 minutes. so i have a new personal best - but since i didnt time it exactly i would have to say it was between 2:14 and 2:18 which is at least 5 minutes faster than ever before. and not very hard either. nice to know i have taken over 30 minutes off our spring 1/2 marathon. resa also seemed faster than me the last time - 2 weeks ago we ran together. ( she is in ohio another 4 days then comes down here for a month ) so big time improvement. just took a week of low activity for it to show up. really happy about this.
the third memorable event was the knee brace. wtf? it was rubbing my whole upper leg area the whole time. and all the skin is torn off. its a freaking mess. i couldnt sleep last night i have bloody sticky goo all over my leg - about the size of my hand is totally messed up. it hurts just sitting here. bending my legs hurts... every thing about it stings. now i have to get on my knees and do tile work. :-/
i threw the thing in the wash as always, i will have to get it out and figure out what happened. my first guess right now is that the elastic is dead and it gained an inch in size and rather than being tight and unmoving on my knee it is now loose and rubbing. if so - out it goes. i have two, and probably wont be able to run with one again for a few weeks.
kinda weird all around. but... whatever! :-)