We're getting close

We did something unexpected this weekend. After our run on Saturday, John and I went home, showered, and took a nap. I forgot how nice it is to do nothing, even if it's only for an hour on a Saturday afternoon. Between work, the homes tour, social events, and training for a triathlon next week and Heartland in a month, I feel like I haven't sit still for more than 5 minutes in the last few weeks.

My schedule is starting to wear on me. I need more than 7 hours of sober sleep, especially on the weekends. Key word: sober. I'm limiting myself to 1-2 drinks a night until Heartland, mostly so I can get some quality sleep. But the running has been going well. I took a week off speed work due to a sinus cold, but I've been getting all of my long runs in. I'm hoping after the tour I can catch up on some sleep and take a few naps.

Right now, I'm averaging 30-35 miles between Saturday and Sunday. This weekend, John, MO and I ran on gravel roads between De Soto and Eudora. It was great Heartland training - gravel roads and no shelter from the sun. We did get to see two Lamborghini's at the gas station in De Soto. Go figure. By the end it was hot and humid, no shade or breeze and the loose gravel was taking a toll. When we were about 1.5 miles from the end, I decided to pick up the pace. I ran the last 1.5 at an 8:05 pace. That made me pretty happy for how hot it was and how much we had already ran.

Sunday, MO very politely put up with me for my second weekend run, which included much more walking than normal. Either way, we were on our feet for another 2.5 hours. This was the first Sunday run where I actually felt fatigued before I even started. John slept in, which made me a little jealous, but I am glad I got that run in. One more weekend of solid running, two weeks of consistent training, and then I start to taper.

After our run this week, I think I have a game plan. Assuming "normal" temperatures, I'm going to run the first few hours at around a 10 min/mile pace walking a few minutes every half hour or so; hopefully that will be about the first 15-18 miles. Once the sun is up and temps have risen, I'll pull back a bit, hopefully to about an 11 min/mile, but I want to take advantage of starting in the dark and the cooler temps. At the turnaround I'll reevaluate and adjust my pace. The last 4-5 miles are mostly downhill, so I'm hoping to pick up the pace at the end.

That being said, I know if it's hot and humid, I'll be walking a lot and running closer to 11:30 or 12. If I overheat, I'm in trouble so my main goal is to prevent overheating at all cost. I think the key for this race is just listening to my body and responding appropriately. If things go well - great. If not, it's just another learning experience. Either way, I've been having fun with Heartland training.

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