So, this is actually my first 20 miler I've done for my marathon training, but it's actually the second 20 miler out of 5 (yes, FIVE!) for the plan. I didn't get to do the first one because it was exactly one week after I broke my toe. The original plan was to do this run this past Saturday but since it was THE HOTTEST DAY OF THE YEAR!!! and it was already 81 degrees at 5:00am, I thought I would postpone. Instead I got my tail to work yesterday (yes Sunday) put in a day's work and then took today off to do the run and get other stuff done that I wasn't able to do last week.
I started the run just before 8:00am. I think I waited too long to start the run. Although it wasn't super-hot, it was sunny and the sun was really beating down and making me hot. Right from the start my legs felt dead. They've felt dead now for over a week. Yet, I was easily into a sub-8:50 pace by mile 2. Because I was doing this run on a weekday, I was doing this run all alone. That also meant that I was carrying my own water and nutrition. In case you care, I take one gel every 4 miles starting at mile 4. I drink only water and I drink it every mile. I use a Nathan water belt which holds two, 10 oz. water bottles, so I have to refill my water bottles at least twice during a 20 miler. But enough about that crap...onto the run.
I started my run through the neighborhood so I could get in a little extra mileage instead of going 10 miles out and 10 miles back. Things started okay as I mentioned above. The legs felt dead but the pace was going well. I was hot but at least there was a breeze in my face on the way out. The course goes, basically, uphill for the way out and downhill for the way in. Now it's not hilly-hilly, but looking at a chart of it, you can see it's definitely uphill.