Tuesday, August 12, 2014

12k = 8k + 4k

Half marathon training has resumed!

It has been 10 weeks since I ran the Niagara Falls Women's half marathon and, while I have been running regularly and running well, I have been keeping my weekend 'long runs' around the 9-10k mark.

Last week I pulled out my calendar, did the math and realized I had better work out my long run schedule if I still want to run the Niagara Falls International Half Marathon at the end of October.

And yes, I do still want to run it.

So last week I upped my Tuesday morning run from 7k to 9k. On Thursday I did an interval training session of 6x800m. And Saturday I ran 12k.

I started off that 12k run feeling pretty good. Nothing hurt. My body seemed ready for the distance and my legs were eating up the kilometres at a steady pace. I told myself I would stop at 8k to see what Rose had to say about my blood sugar and, once I knew that was when I was stopping, I didn't have to have that internal dialogue with myself. You know the one:

Why don't you stop at 6k instead of 8k? It's halfway through. 

No, I want to run 2/3 of the distance before I stop. 

Why don't you stop at 7k then? You'll only have 5k left by that point and it will break it up nicely. 

No. I'm stopping at 8k and not one step before. 

To be honest I actually stopped at 7.7k.


Because it was the last bit of shade before a long sunny stretch of road and I was hot.

As soon as I stopped I could feel Rose vibrating on my hip. She's hard to feel when I'm running and I don't often notice when she is trying to tell me something.

Rose is vibrating at 8k? Wow, I must be high. That sucks.

Nope. I was low. Not only was I low (3.6) but I was low with two arrows pointing down which means I was dropping fast.

Very strange considering I don't usually go low on runs. Stranger still since my blood sugar had been good before I started and I had eaten two dates before heading out.

I had two packs of fruit chews with me and 4k left to run. I downed them both and paced back and forth in my patch of shade for a few minutes. I checked again and I was 2.6 (bah!). More pacing. Five minutes later I was 3.4.

I took off at a slow trot. I figured I had started to climb back up which was good so I had better start making my way back home in case I dropped again. I ran about 800m but was feeling a little too woozy to keep that up so I walked the next 500m. Then I ran 1.5k and was again feeling too woozy so I stopped. Each time I stopped I checked my pump. Rose told me that I climbed up to 5.7 but then went back down to 4.5 again. I speed walked the last kilometre home figuring I could keep a consistent fast walking pace better than I could run/walk.

I didn't go low again and the rest of the day my blood sugars were pretty steady. So whatever happened to cause an unexpected low in the run seemed to settle itself down again.

My 12k turned into a great 8k run followed by a meh 4k run/walk.

This week, I'll be running 9k on Tuesday morning, doing hills on Thursday and then upping my Saturday morning run to 14k. And I'll be tossing a few extra packs of fruit chews in my pocket just in case.

Let the half marathon training begin!

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