Oh, summer in Florida. It comes in around March and lasts until November. This meme from ABC says it all . . .
Oddly enough, this year our summer is not only lasting a long time but the heat of the day is hitting the 100s; typically we are past this point and it isn’t quite so hot.
I can say I felt it strongly this past Sunday during my 18 miler.
16 miles went well a few weeks ago. I stepped outside that AM and the temps had dropped, humidity was low, and I felt I could run forever.
I hoped the same this week for my 18 but, alas, I was out of luck. It was HOT.
83 degrees hot, feels like temps, at 6:45, before the sun even rose!
So go early . . .
And I did.
I’d gotten up and out around 5:30 knowing once the sun hit my skin I’d likely keel over. I wanted to be home before the sun peeked up from behind the trees.
The first four miles weren’t too bad. I was hot, and sweaty, and I drank a lot, but I felt okay.
Miles 5-10 were eh. I ran, I walked some. I traveled out of my regular paths and hit a new path – one I’ve taken before but not often. This took me near some industrial buildings and a small pond, where I stopped and had a gel around mile 7.5.
I must say, this one is TASTY!
However, I started to feel a bit sick. Not nauseous, not overheated, just hungry and run down. I’m sure it was the heat, and sometimes my sugar levels get out of whack. They were definitely off that day and I had to take gels earlier than I normally do, each 3.5 miles instead of every 4.
So, around mile 14, I sat for a few.
Don’t let that smile fool ya – I was beat! I’d gone through both water bottles and most of the 1.5 liter in my backpack, which, by the way, was warm and gross.
When I got back up I was able to do a slow run, and once my marshmallow gel kicked in I felt a bit better. I stopped at a local park to fill up my water bottles (more warm water, but at least it was liquid!), turned on some music, and finished up the 18.
It wasn’t pretty, but running isn’t always pretty. And it’s those ugly runs that make us stronger, right?!
When will this humidity end?!
Things I learned this past week:
- I really prefer having coffee and an hour or so to wake up now when I’m doing longer runs. Caffeine gets me going in more ways than one, and when I’m awake I don’t feel so much like I’m running through muck with each step.
- I hate running when it’s hot. HATE it. And in the humidity. HATE it. I am a cooler weather girl. Please, please bring it soon!
- Take more liquids than you think you will need. I should’ve had a back up somewhere along the route that was frozen and had time to cool. However, I don’t typically marathon train this early in the year. Typically it’s December when I’m logging these high miles, and by that time it’s in the 60s and 70s in the morning when I run.
- Distractions are great, but they work only if you are mentally okay. I usually am, but on this run even listening to podcasts was tough. I couldn’t stop thinking about the heat and my frustration with it. I think I spent more than half the run complaining in my head. And that’s while I was listening to podcasts!
- You can do this. And mottos help. I spent the last three miles with this motto in my mind: I’ve done this before. I can do this again. I repeated it over and over and over again. Then, I would stop and think of other things. When the mind pain began again I would begin my motto again. It really did help. I thought of other races I’ve run. Other trainings I’ve gone through that were tough. And I finished.
It’s all in the mind.
The race is November 5th. Less than a month now. I have a 20 miler left and then the big day! Seems like I just started training; it is coming so quickly!
How is your training going?