Kiah shared in the last post about her desire to run the Whistlestop Marathon. She continues sharing about the journey.
After all the summer fun and vacations were over I hit the pavement hard in mid August with the only friend that that could be roped into doing it with me - Kathy of the skunk, skydiving, and garbage can fame.
With nine weeks until the marathon, we depended heavily on weekend “long-runs.” A long run is several miles longer than you’re used to running, and it’s ran at a slightly slower pace.
August 20 - 8 miles
The first long run rolled around bright and early. Kathy and I ran separately. Super tired at 7.5 miles I thought, “How in the world can I run 18 more of these!?” To my surprise I wasn’t sore at all the next morning.
August 27 - 10.5 miles
Kathy and I set out from the coffee shop in Washburn to Pikes Bay Marina in Bayfield. It took us 1:39 minutes. Beautiful weather, great company, and a satisfying finish. Conquering a distance I had never run before gave me new found courage to continue to aspire to run a distance I wasn’t quite yet sure I could run. Again, I was hardly sore the next day.
September 3 - 12 miles
Guest runner?! I jokingly asked our friend Nathan if he wanted to run 12 miles with Kathy and I. Being athletic, and game for just about anything he agreed without any hesitation. We rode the bus to Washburn and ran back to Ashland. At the beginning I felt really good, but by the end I felt dizzy and chilled. Being chilled when it’s really hot and humid is never a good sign, so again I wondered if I was physically able to run 26 miles. Still I was hardly sore the next day.
smiling in this BEFORE picture. He wasn't so happy
afterwards and limped for a few days.
I couldn't have asked for a better marathon buddy!
September 3rd bus ride to Washburn
September 9 - 14 miles
Kathy and I ran separately again. I took a super pretty route that looped around in the country northwest of Washburn. In order to avoid heat exhaustion again I had purchased a hydration belt. Drinking during the run made all of the difference in the world and I finished feeling on top of the world. The half marathon was no longer an option because I knew I could run that far. I still wasn’t 100% that I could run a full marathon. I was a little more creaky the next day, but by the second day was back to normal.
September 17 - 15 miles
I meant to run 16 miles. I extended my loop from the previous week a few more miles because I had liked that route so well. My good time made me suspicious that the route might not have been as long as I thought it was. I hopped in my car and to my dismay found that I’d only ran 15! I was mortified because I’d been extremely tired, and didn’t think I could’ve made it 16 miles...let alone tack on 10 more miles for a nice even 26!
September 23. 18 miles
After the discouragement of coming up a mile short on the last run, I was determined to make 18 miles if it killed me. I mapped out an exact there-and-back route. After almost 3 hours of running I ran back into Washburn, high off the fact that I had just ran 18 miles!! I had felt really great on the run, and had logged a really great time. After this run I knew I could do the marathon. Now it was just a matter of how well I could do the marathon.
October 1 - 22 miles
30 degrees. Brrr!!! With the sun just starting to come up Kathy and I began our final training long run of 22 miles. We ran from Ashland to Bayfield and averaged a 9:45 minute/mile pace. With over 3 1/2 hours of running BEFORE noon we felt pretty accomplished and TIRED afterwards!
Carb loading the night before our 22 mile long-run.
Kathy resurrected a childhood backpack to carry Gatorade
Oct. 1 - Stretching at 6:45 am for our 22 mile run.
Again smiling BEFORE the run!
A hydration belt takes all the credit for
keeping me alive during these grueling long-runs
Two weeks until the real deal of the Whistlestop marathon!!