My run this morning: Awesome. Best long run I've ever run. 15.95 miles in 2:17:38. Didn't cramp. Didn't get tired. Finished strong (last four miles in 32 minutes). By the way, this time is 14 minutes faster than my 25k El Scorcho hell walk in July.
Credit goes to three things: 1) I started slow. Real slow. First four miles in 9:24 pace. Remember how I griped about not having a coach to run with? This morning, they placed me in another group, a group whose runners had similar times to my times. So I didn't run by myself as much as I did with the other group. And the coaches in this group were great. But I guess it wasn't a coaching problem. It was a pacing problem in my other long runs. When there are 4 or 5 people in front of you running 8:30 warm-up miles and 8-minute miles coming out of the gate, you are going to get tired. But that wasn't case today.
The second reason my run went so well: I took two Hammer endurolyte caps. One at mile 4, the other at mile 10. I also took on Hammer gel at the 1 hour mark and honestly, I don't think I needed the hammer gel. The endurolyte caps kept me from cramping. At the end of the run, I felt a few twinges, but I think that's because I skipped the mile 14 water stop. I was feeling so good that I decided to take it on to the house. Of course, about half mile past the water stop I was like, "Ohh, I should have had some water." So I finished a little dehyrdated, but I finished and I finished strong.
The other reason: The weather. It was 69 degrees when we started. It is usually 75 to 80 when we start our long runs.
This run puts me at 41 for the week. I figure I'll run 40 miles a week for the next two weeks, then do a cutback week. In October, I'll do 45 miles a week for three weeks then do a cutbak week. And in November, I'll ramp it up to 50 miles a week for three weeks before I taper for the big marathon.