Yesterday I did a 35K run, four weeks out from the Vancouver marathon on May 6. My schedule had this final session over 30K a week later, but I am racing the Vancouver Sun Run 10K next week so I swapped around some sessions including this one.
As mentioned in my previous post, the past week was about recovering from my fastest half marathon ever. Then there is the cumulative fatigue from 12 weeks of record-volume training. On Saturday's 10K my energy was very low, and I struggled through the recovery run in 60 minutes.
I expected - and certainly hoped - to feel better for the 35K. We eased into the session, running the first 5K at 5:20/K before we slightly picked up the pace. Tim, who did six hours of cycling on the wind trainer in three days, turned around at 12K.
I was looking forward to the rest of the run. Listening to my iPod, I noticed how energetic my body felt, a stark contrast from the previous day. There was still a light tenderness in the quads and hammies, but nothing that prevented me from running as I pleased.
After 13.5K I turned onto Paradise Valley Road, which after another 1.5K turns into a spectacular section through lush rainforest. The moss-covered trees on both sides of the narrow road looked stunning on the warm and sunny April morning.
I turned around at 17.5K, having covered the previous 12.41K at an average 5:12/K while my heart pumped blood at an average 133 beats per minute.
It was time to pick up the pace; I ran the next 15.5K at 4:46/K and an average 143bpm, thinking about how much I love to run - and to train.
For the final 2K, which begins with 1K up the hill to get to Valleycliffe, I eased my effort to begin the cooldown and ran it at 5:31/K.
Arriving at home, Mr Garmin told me I had covered the 35K in 2:56:49, with an average heart rate of 142. I only carried a 500ml bottle of water and could have easily drunk more but chose to keep moving as I felt good. I also had a flask of Hammer Gel for nutrition.
It was an awesome long run that showed I have recovered well from last week's race. Since the start of the year, my longest runs - 30K and more - have been 32K (Jan 29); 30K (Feb 5); 35K (Feb 26); 30K (March 3); 39K on March 18 and yesterday's 35K.
Next weekend I won't run long because of Sunday's 10K race. And the remaining Sunday runs are less than 30K.
My total mileage for last week came to 112K and included a rest day on Tuesday.