I made it 11 miles on Saturday!
I did it. And I felt pretty darn good most of the time. I picked a route that just looped around and around my neighborhood—rarely doubling up, but never focusing on how far I was going…just that I had to keep running. I want to make it through my half without seriously injuring my knee, so I started walking a minute at the beginning of each mile right away (slightly longer if I was consuming fuel). After three miles, I ate a honey stinger waffle (yum!) After six miles, I had some honey stinger energy chews, and stopped at a stranger’s house and asked him to refill my water bottle (you can do that when you live in small towns, I guess). As I ran away from his house, I felt awesome. Miles 7 & 8 made me think I could run a half-marathon like a badass—I was running 14:30 miles, which I’m pretty sure would be an all-out-awesome pace for my race.
Then, my knee started hurting, and I took more frequent, longer walk breaks. Two walk breaks in mile 9, three in mile 10. The funny thing is, I’m pretty sure my knee felt better while I was actually running…it’s a soreness I can push through that’s more pronounced when I walk (especially on stairs). I think this is mental, and I hope the race atmosphere allows me to push through it next weekend.
I took two walk breaks in mile 11, and ran the last .3 miles at sub-13:00 pace. Without intolerable pain. I’m really looking forward to seeing what I can do in a race atmosphere.
After this run we went to the farmer’s market, I had a protein-packed lunch & showered, we had family picture taken, went out for ice cream, and then attended a Kentucky Derby party. We were home and in bed by 9:30, but for the first time during training I didn’t take a nap after my long run, let alone lay around completely useless for the rest of the day.
If anyone reading this has experienced sore knees while running longer distances, is there something you can do to treat it? Friends have suggested KT tape, or a brace….I’m thinking more about some sort of painkiller, since I don’t seem to be injured.