20-mile long run completed. Barely.
Seriously, it was pretty tough going. First of all, I got a really late start - didn't leave my place until almost 7pm. Also, I hadn't eaten anything since lunch so I was pretty much running on an empty stomach. And lastly, I didn't really have a route mapped out so my run wasn't very scenic. I usually do my long runs on the beach, but since it was cold out and only a matter of minutes before sunset, I didn't want to run in the ocean breeze.
What I did instead was zig-zag my way through several different residential areas nearby. I did this for about the first half of my run before taking about a 15 minute break to buy a pizza from next door so I'd have something waiting for me when I got back home.
With a little over 9 miles left before hitting my 20-mile mark, I decided to run a straight-shot down Venice Blvd and back after hitting the beach (about 4.5 miles each way) to complete my run.
Then came my low point.
Since I had recently purchased a new camera holster at REI, my camera went along with me to document my run. Around mile 15 or so after snapping a couple of pictures, another late night male runner was coming up behind me. Instantly, my primitive male ego took over and I started running again to prevent him from catching up to me...without securely zipping up the little camera bag.
Not only did he pass me about .5 miles later, but a few steps later, out flew camera. It hit the asphault with a sickening sound and my heart immediately sunk. After slowly picking it off the ground, I was devasted to find that the image screen was busted and no longer working although the camera itself could still take pictures. I was devasted.
I started fatiguing pretty badly from about mile 16. Legs were getting heavy with each passing step and my spirits were down. By mile 18, I started taking walking breaks. How was I ever going to get through a full 26.2 at this rate, I wondered.
Thankfully, at mile 19 my spirits lifted a little so I decided to try and finish strong. Slowing my goal marathon pace by a minute or two, I shuffled my way the last mile to the finish.
I immediately made a beeline to the Long's Drugstore across the street where I promptly downed a 20-ounce bottle of Gatorade and bought a 3 lbs bag of ice for my post-long run soak. Pizza was cold by the time I came back but devoured it anyway.
Final running time = 3:06:48.
Average pace = 9:09
Need to do better.