In a nutshell this long run got cut short for a couple of reasons, the first one being that I ran it at marathon pace. Didn't mean to obviously, it just kinda happened that way. More on the run itself in a bit.
The 2nd reason was because of something wonky going on with my foot which I think is directly related to my back issue (degenerative disk). I dont remember exactly when it started in the route itself, but first the top of my left foot was hurting very badly. I tried loosening my laces, but that wasnt it. I am scared to think that its the beginning of some sort of stress issue. The other thing, as it pertains to my back, is that the same foot was basically numb for all of the 2nd half. It started with my toes and worked its way up mid foot.
Both were very uncomfortable, and since I was already running much faster than I should have been, I just kept at it, settling on the fact that I was going to call it at 18 miles. 18 miles at MP is like 20 at training pace right? Right? Well its gonna have to be.
I was worried about this run beforehand as it was, since it had been 4 weeks since the 21 miler in anticipation of the Dallas White Rock, and clearly due to that I had to run long this weekend, since I ended up only doing the half last weekend.
I got to base shortly before 5:15; Coach was like 20? Yeah. We chatted for a bit, told him I was nervous and he told me 'just jog it, you'll be fine'. Oops. I caught up to a few peeps at the 1st water stop and we were running about the same pace (10:05) but unfortunately they were going the long way around Rice to avoid Sabine at the end, so I ran most of University by myself, stopping at Starbucks for a potty break where a few others were, and then I met up with them again when they had stashed some water/G at an intersection and offered me some. Yes! I kept them in my sights for a while and then by the time I got to the Westpark bridge (which I conquered at 10:22; purposely just putting one foot in front of the other so I didnt walk it at all), but most of the rest of the run was run alone. I will say my fastest mile came in at 9:47 and not ashamed to say it was all because a certain person had gone by and I wanted to make certain I made it to the next water station while he was there. :) No shame in my game! We'll just leave the conversation part out of this story.
I made it back to base (16 miles) then just added on at the end and called it a day. Sure I could have done 2 more miles, but I thought better of it based on what I had done and how the foot was feeling. My back is absolutely killing me right now, and I was going to go to the gym, but I think I had better just settle with the ibuprofen, some food, a bit of Christmas shopping and rest. I'll hit the gym tomorrow before working a shift at the 'store'.
Unfortunately because I forgot to stop my watch when I finished and was walking around and talking (who me?), my pace actually shows 10:32 average due to a 12:xx something 19th mile. Oops. Obviously it should be closer to 10:15 at my best guesstimate.
Definitely pleased with it, but I know it was the wrong thing to do. I should never have pushed it like that today on a training run. At the most I should have run the last 5-6 miles at MP, not the whole damn thing. As it is, I actually ran quite a few miles way under GMP.
Oh well, whats done is done. I'll cut back to 13 miles next weekend before doing 21 for the last long run before Houston. Hoping it all goes well. This wacky running schedule I've done the past several months has been very different for me, and I just hope that the fitness is there to actually be able to knock out one more long run.
**updated to add that while I was out shopping, on several occasions, the top of my foot would 'cramp' up and it was difficult to walk. Had to stretch it out and wait for it to stop. Good grief, I hope this goes away, or at the very least stays manageable for just a bit longer!