I love running. In fact, the only thing I love more than running is running long (and also maybe chocolate chip cookies).
After scaling back my mileage the past two weeks due to the RnR USA Half and then my widsom teeth removal , I am ready to pick it back up and get into serious long run territory. I'm hoping to score an 18 and two 20 milers in April, which should set me up nicely for a busy race schedule in May.
The last time I ran 20+ miles was at JFK in November. Needless to say, it's been awhile and I'm eager to test out my endurance. I'm sure the first 20 miler won't be enjoyable. Let's face it, sometimes long runs just plain suck, especially when you run out of new running routes. Mapping 20 milers are always difficult for me. Its a game of "which parts of Philadelphia will I hate the least on this particular day."
That said, I really do love running long. I love the slow, steady burn, the hours to myself to work out my thoughts, and of course the post-run satisfaction that comes along with sitting on my ass the rest of the day (I deserve it).
While perusing r/running on Reddit this morning I found a link to Wiki page called The Science of the Long Run . Luckily for us 2013 folks, Wikipedia isn't nearly as trecherous as it was when it started. My teachers are even vocally supportive of it (Need a quick date on something? Wiki it!). If the author's references are as relible as they seem, then it makes for some very interesting data on the long run.
The study looks for correlations in data between the number of long runs in the last two months of marathon training and marathon time, injury rate, etc.