In the Books - 32.3k!

I am very happy to report my 20 mile (32.2km) run is done.  A lot of it can best be described as torture.

It started out beautifully, sunshine, open bathrooms at Sikome Lake (hurrah a water supply!), light breeze, blue sky with fluffy white clouds.  I wore shorts and a T-shirt.  This was very stupid.  Isolated showers were forecast and I should know better.

Bridge under 22x by Bow River

Gorgeous spring day!

Happy running person
All in all it was rather nice.  I had to slow down at the start as I planned to stay around 7:30 min/km.  The steep hill (Big Bastard Hill) out of Cranston has finally thawed and this was my first run out of the house into Fish Creek since last year.

I headed north after crossing 22x toward Bankside.  At this stage it looked as though dark clouds were blowing in so I turned back south.  I had to stop at 11k as something was rubbing the big toe on my right foot, I thought it was a stone.  No, I had managed somehow to put on non-matching socks.  The left fluffier sock was fine and the right one was not.

Enter apocalyptic clouds

After some online whining to my dear runner friends I got my arse moving (actually they got my arse moving).   This time I took a detour to the west trying to avoid the rain.

That didn't work so well.  It got very very windy.  I stopped again to put on a long sleeve shirt (now why the hell did I not bring a tracksuit top or jacket?) and the rain started.  At 15k I contemplated crawling into Bow Valley Ranch but settled for sitting on a log in the now pouring rain trying to stuff my phone into a plastic bag.   (You may note here that I had the foresight to bring waterproofing for my phone but not a raincoat). 

My online support group got my arse moving once again.  

I was so cold and miserable I didn't even see these guys standing next to me.  They ran ahead and crossed the pathway.

I should never have sat down as I got even colder.  At this point I was just about halfway through the run and I gave up mentally.  I wasn't even sure I could run back home, I just wanted it to be over.

After I crossed back toward Sikome, the sun came out and the numbness left my hands (I didn't even bring gloves, good grief).  I decided to get to 21.1km and see where I was.  It turned out to be right by 22x which I knew was 5k from the house.  Finally I felt slightly better until reaching the valley before BB Hill where my big toe started throbbing.  I took off my shoe and found the entire bottom and side of the toe was a blister.  Outstanding.  

I had no clue how I could possibly reach 32.2 when I had barely hit 22.  I dragged my ass up the hill, having decided to call for a ride home when I got to the road.  It must have been the heat and sun as when I got to the top I started running again.  My toe hurt but what can you do.

Then strangeness happened: the last 10k was unexpectedly great!  I plugged through at a steady 7:30km pace with 3 out and backs past the house to make up the distance, trying to ignore my toe.  Literally as soon as I got in the house an enormous wind gust hit and black clouds rolled in.  I fear that would have been the end of me.

This intriguing little cairn is by the side of BB Hill.

I had issues with my Garmin on this run so ended up doing a bit more distance 'just in case'.  Can you imagine going through all that and finding it wasn't quite 20 miles?  It stopped completely then refused to show the lap times from 16k on.  I had Nike+ running on my phone just in case though I suspect the distance on that is typically slightly longer than actual.

My next long run will be the marathon.  Aaaaaarghhh!

According to the Garmin, I ran at an average 7:45 min/km pace for 32.3 km in 4:10:51.  The lap times downloaded normally.  (Don't ask me).  I'm so happy with that given how many times I nearly quit.  It is also a bunch better than my last 32.2 training run.  Now it's time to move ahead and plan for the marathon.  I already threw out the offending blister causing sock.


  1. Way to stick it out and finish your last long run! Running that high of distance is tough ...even tougher alone!

    1. Thanks Leigh :) Amazing how quickly race day seems to creep up. Hope you are healing well.


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