This week, though, is the monster of monsters. I'm running 22 miles on Sunday.
Gulp. Just typing that in makes me feel nauseous. It won't be my first 22-mile run of the year - I did that one in January. But it will be my longest run since Feb. 7, and it will be my last training run for San Francisco.
It seems kinda strange that I'll be running the San Francisco Marathon in just a few weeks. It doesn't seem real. I've ran 18 and 20 mile runs recently and will run 22 but none of those seem like they're in preparation for San Francisco. I don't know why, I guess it's because I'm going it alone this time around instead of with a group. Maybe because I've never been to San Francisco and before Surf City we went down to check out part of the course and the scenery and all that. But this one, I don't know, just doesn't seem real.
But it is real of course, which is why I'm running 22 miles on Sunday. I mean, why would anyone run 22 miles unless they're training for a marathon or ultramarathon or something? Actually, why would anyone run 22 miles, period? Insane.
I'm running this run alone, mostly. The Lopers are running Saturday and some of them are running 15 miles but Saturday is Argentina-Germany at 7 a.m. and I'm not going to miss that, so I've got to adjust. That means bright and early Sunday. Well, it means early so it won't get bright on me. The last thing I want to do is to have the sun come out during my run. It can come out, so long as it's towards the end of it.
I'm probably going to have to get up at 4 a.m. and get out and on the road by about 4:20 at the latest. I'm anticipating this run will take about four hours, give or take, so I definitely want to be done by 8:30, preferably closer to 8, so that means get to bed early and out the door early.
I have recruited some help, though. I
suckered talked my youngest brother into agreeing to run the final 5-6 miles with me.
I didn't really tell him the whole story. What I told him was: "I'll try to get to the house at about Mile 16 so you can run home with me (it's about six miles from my mom's to my house). I'll be tired and running slow, but that's okay. I will need your energy to help me power through to the finish."
What I should have told him was: "I'll try to get the house at about Mile 16 so you can run home with me. I'm going to be a mess. I'll be in pain, I might be crying and if I didn't tape my nipples I'll be bleeding like crazy. Don't let me wimp out. Just run and force me to keep up. Don't go too fast, though, because I want to live to see July 5."
It's times like these when I ask myself: Why can't I be content with running 10Ks and half-marathons?