Here is an exert from my marathon experience earlier this year. My Team in Training group was running 20 miles this particular weekend and I was in Austin so I ran with my friend Ginny and we didn't like the idea of running 20 miles so it became our weekend to run two ten mile runs back to back. The mind is a powerful thing!
5/11/09 - The Week of Two Ten's. My friend Ginny and I are running the San Diego Marathon together at the end of May. She has been training on her own but matching the Team in Training schedule and decided to come to Austin with me to run 20 miles this past Saturday. In talking, we decided 20 miles was too much and way to overwhelming and we would rather run 2 - 10 mile segments. So it was the weekend of Two Ten's. Our first mistake might have been not running on Thursday like we were scheduled, instead we ran Friday morning. I wear so much technical equipment on my arms, I managed to chaff the inside of my left arm pretty raw. Who would have thought I would need Body Glide for just three miles?! I put Neosporin on it and tried to let it air out and at least scab over but I sweat so much I knew Saturday was not going to be very fun. Then, some how on the way down to Austin Ginny and I managed to damage ourselves even more, she with a pinch mark from the seatbelt that welted up and me with a large scrap on my leg. We looked like we had been through the ringer and we hadn't even run yet!
We had discussed our route and decided to stick close to Town Lake because several running stores provide water and it is fairly safe. It was abnormally hot and humid, only adding to the joy of running Two Ten's. Our plan was to run up Congress, around the capital, down to the lake and around the lake twice.
Somewhere around mile 14 or 4 of my second 10, I knew my knees were really mad and the remaining 6 were going to be pretty tough. But I was on the downward slope so I kept going. The nice thing about the Nike ipod sensor is the count down of miles so it tells you how much more you have to go. The down side is it tells you how much farther you have to go. Pushing the button every few seconds doesn't make it tell you less distance faster...it is very methodical that way. Mile 18 I realized I had gone as far as my last long run and I only had two more miles to go. That isn't hard right? Two miles, less than a 5K...easy breezy. As my watch beeps for me to run another 5 minute...I winch at the thought of picking up my legs one more time. My walk is more dragging of my feet and I notice my shoes are covered in dust from the trail.
I managed to get all the way around the lake twice and had about a mile left. I ran up Congress and around a few buildings, well, walked/hobbled around a few buildings and was never more happy than when the ipod said I had completed my workout! Such joy! I had made it! Two Ten's!