Ran 13 miles.
No seriously, I did...last weekend. In just under 2 and half hours: I recognize the timing is not something to brag about). Still, it's the longest I've ever plodded (um, did you see my facebook status?)
I've mentioned it to a few of you, but I might as well throw it out there for the universe to help me actualize my goal:
St. George Marathon in October 2010
It's been on the radar for a while now, but I haven't really wanted to go public with it because last time I signed up for this race I ended up with a seriously painful bone spur in my heel, cortisone shots and orthotics... and needless to say, I dropped out of the race before I even got close to a starting line.
So this time we are working a different route: running barefoot. (Or nearly barefoot).
My training has been pretty much exclusively barefoot and Vibrams (you know those silly 'toe shoes' that are supposed to mimic the feeling of barefoot without having to be overly apprehensive about glass shards. You can still feel the glass shards, pebbles, etc... they just don't leave your feet bloody. Nice trade off.)
Anyway, observations from Saturday morning's run:
- Gatorade IS thirst aid (and seriously, I am not normally a fan 'performance enhancing energy/sports crap' but at mile 6 it gave me a new jolt of energy)
- 13 miles is A LOT different for my body than 10
- I do run faster with music
- My feet really started getting tired at mile 10... I was yearning for soft dewy grass instead of rock chip -- yowsers!
- There was a point (after mile 10 and I started heel striking from lazy form) I thought 'hmmm, padded shoes would be nice.'
- Enjoy myself (as much as is possible whilst running 26.2 miles)
- Sub 5 hr (this may take more than one marathon to do, but I'm optimistic)
For me, yes I love the freedom of barefoot running; but more than anything it's about form for me. I have wretched running form in shoes - heel striking, running heavy, bad posture... running in the Vibrams or barefoot changes that. As soon as I get lazy in my foot falls, my heel will let me know immediately if I'm running heavy. :)
Some people just run injury free with good form... I get by with a little help from my friends (aka my feet.) And I'll do it all again on Saturday!