Monday, October 28, 2013

Marathon Monday #13

I'm not sure I could have had a more perfect week of training last week! Whoo hoo!!

Since I'd pretty much missed the previous two weeks, I did make a couple changes to the overall plan.

The PlanThe Reality
Mon, 10/2122 with Sallie
Bike Commute
Tue, 10/225
5 Hill-o-ween
Wed, 10/23RESTYoga
Bike Commute
Thu, 10/246
Fri, 10/25REST
Sat, 10/261818
Sun, 10/27REST

I'm just seriously so happy with how my training went last week. The only thing that would have made it perfect would have been if I'd commuted by bike on Friday as well. But one little hiccup is not enough to upset me at all.

It was one awesome week!

Read on to hear more about Saturday's long run + the Las Vegas Balloon Fest.

The couple days leading up to the long run were filled with negative thoughts. Thoughts on how crazy it was to run 18 miles. Doubts on my body being strong enough. Worries about signing up for the marathon. All completely ridiculous.

On Friday, a FB friend of mine posted some pictures of the Las Vegas Balloon Festival, and I simply KNEW that I needed to plan my run around this festival. A quick google search later, and I found the Western Beltway Trail was just 2 miles from the festival. Perfect!

I arrived at the festival just in time to see the launch of several balloons.

Vegas Balloon Fest

LV Balloon Fest

Vegas Balloon Fest

I was amazed at watching the balloons inflate with the hot air, and how quickly they were ready to launch.

Vegas Balloon Fest

Vegas Balloon Fest

Vegas Balloon Fest

Once the majority of the balloons were up in the air, it was time to hit the pavement. I had a few technical issues with my phone and gps watch at first, so it took a bit to get going, but after seeing all those balloons launch, I was pumped to run!

Now this is the way to start a run! If they can fly these massive balloons, surely I can run 18 miles. :-) #lvballoonfest #vegas #amazing #seenonmyrun #FitFluential Thanks, @wendys_hat for posting pics yesterday! 

The first couple miles are usually the hardest (well, next to the last few miles. and some of the others in the middle.), and these were no exception. Especially, since I hadn't hooked up with the trail yet, and there was no sidewalk for most of these first two miles. Luckily, there was a nice wide area of packed dirt to run on. Not the most ideal, but not the worst. At least, I was away from the road.

I hooked up with the trail around mile 2, and it was pretty smooth sailing from there.

Around mile 4.5, I could still see a few of the balloons up in the sky. I really thought I'd see more on my way back, but those were the last glimpses I saw of them.

Most of the trail has bridges or underpasses, so you don't need to wait for lights to cross busy streets. Unfortunately, where I did have to cross streets, the lights were LONG! It was a great little chance to do a few stretches.

About 4 miles smack dab in the middle of the run (aka the last two miles of the trail) the trail was not paved yet, but it was still nice to run on. It's clearly ready to be paved soon. Yay!

On my way back, I saw a lot more runners and cyclists out and about. It was such a beautiful morning! Blue skies. Perfect temps. It was a lovely start to the day.

The last two miles were TOUGH! I was ready to be done, though I'm confident I could have continued if that had been the plan. The worst was being back on the non-sidewalk portion of the road. My pace came to practically a crawl. :(

I'd parked in a Walgreens parking lot, so I stopped in there before heading to my car. I wanted to get a recovery drink. I grabbed a VitaCoco coconut water with pineapple. I think it may have helped re-hydrate me, but I did not enjoy the taste. At all. I finished it, because I'm cheap and don't like to waste money. But I'll definitely not be buying that again. Ew.

Oh. Let me talk about fueling during this run. I had a PB roll-up before I headed out. I popped 3 gummy bears about every 3 miles. Around mile 9.5 I had a couple bites of another PB roll-up. I didn't experience any tummy issues, and I think this all helped to make this a successful run.

I ran with my Camelbak filled with water. By the end, though I was hydrated, my mouth felt a little parched. I think I need to explore other options besides plain water.

Once again, this long run was done using 10:1 intervals. Those little walk breaks are really a life saver - both mentally and physically.

Up this week? Another perfect week of training (I hope)! 6 weeks of training left, and I need to make the most of them! 20 miles on the docket for this weekend. Wish me luck!!

Have you ever seen hot air balloons launch? Have you ever ridden in one?
Coconut water - love it or hate it?
I need fuel suggestions. What's your favorite way to fuel during a long run?

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  1. So beautiful and amazing, I wanted to do this while I was in San Francisco for the Nike Marathon, but there just was not enough time. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thanks, Caroline. It really was amazing and beautiful. One day, I'd love to take a ride in a hot air balloon. :)

  2. I think I'd be motivated to run after watching those too! Those are amazing! I've seen them launch before, but have never ridden in one. Would like to though.
    Awesome job on your 18! I've tried coconut water once, and never will again. Gross is right. With pineapple is probably even nastier! I fuel with GU's and water.

    1. I thought the pineapple would make it better! Guess I was wrong. lol.
      The problem I have with GU (or similar) is I have the hardest time opening the packets. Geez!