As I mentioned in my Weekly Training Training Recap I did a second 20 mile run this past weekend and unfortunately I have to say it didn’t really go much better than my first 20 mile run (you can read about my first attempt here).  I’m going to try to keep this brief, because to be honest I don’t really want to think about it too much.

I started my run around 11am after having some oatmeal and doing some last minute stretches.  I had decided to put in walk breaks from the start hoping that would alleviate some of the issues I had last time.  Well, similarly to last time I was doing well through about mile 15/16 and then I just started to hurt.  My feet hurt (although not as bad as last time), my legs hurt (damn piriformis that I always have trouble with), I was cold (it was probably just below 40 degrees, probably the coldest I’ve run in so far) and I was just not having a good time.

Now I understand that marathon training is not supposed to be “a good time”, but something about this run really rattled me and as I got to about mile 19 I just started to lose it.  I stopped running and called my husband and started crying that I didn’t think I could do this, I just wanted to cancel my whole trip to Florida for the marathon and forget it…yes, I had a meltdown.

I’ve calmed down a bit now that I’ve had some time to regroup, and in hindsight I think I had psyched myself out before this run even started.  I woke up Saturday and I just felt exhausted, I kept thinking “I am way too tired to do this today”, then I went outside and it was colder than I was expecting which threw me off a bit.  I wasn’t as prepared as I was last time, I didn’t have all my stuff laid out, I was scrambling around looking for everything, and by the time I was out the door all I could think about was how I couldn’t wait for this run to be over, so as things started to get tough around mile 18 or so instead of pulling myself together and pushing through it I just lost it.

Now I know that attempting to train for a marathon during my busiest time of year at work, especially being a new runner, was NOT a very good idea, but at this point I’ve already put in a lot of time and effort and I want to do this and more importantly I think I can do this.  So my plan right now is to continue to stretch the heck out of my legs and feet and to go to Florida in January and complete a marathon.  It may be slower than I hoped and I may walk more than I planned, but I’m going to go into it knowing that I didn’t train as much as I would have liked to because of work and that next time I’ll do better!

And I think I’m going to buy a copy of this book to take with me!

5 thoughts on “THE 20 MILE MELTDOWN…

  1. You will finish this marathon!! 🙂 Seriously, I felt like you could have written all my 20 mile run posts. I’ve hated every single one of them. Which might be why I only went to 18 this time. 🙂 The adrenaline on race day definitely helps. Plus I’m starting to realize running 20 miles alone is quite boring and probably helps with the horrible mental game. I think from now on all my crazy crazy long runs like that will be with someone for at least part of the way! Can’t believe it’s only 3 weeks away!! 🙂

    • Thanks Jenn, honestly it makes me feel so much better to know that other people have felt the same way on their 20 mile run and still made it through a marathon! I really hope we’re starting in the same corral so I’ll at least have someone to run with for a bit!

  2. While I haven’t run more than 14 miles, I know how painful (literally and mentally) those long runs can be.

    And on the last long run I did (12.5) two weeks ago, I forgot my gloves, didn’t wear a scarf, and it was around 45 degrees. I was freezing, and pretty miserable by the end. Get your packing list of layers going now (I sure am!), cause I keep thinking if the weather happens to be chilly, it’ll make the running a lot harder. With layers and feeling comfortable, at least it takes out one more stressor. You can do it! 🙂

    • I don’t know what it was about this weekend, in the past I’ve always started off cold and them warmed up pretty quickly, but I just never warmed up this time!

      I really need to start working on my packing and thinking about layers, I keep checking the weather hoping it doesn’t get too cold!

  3. Pingback: The 5 Year Plan: Frustrations | Live, Run, Grow

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