Today I did huge run by my standards. I rarely do anything over 20 miles--even in marathon training--and I don't think I've ever done a training run over 3 hours, until this morning. At least I think I did a big run.
I didn't mean for it to be that far or take that long, really. I just set out with my Garmin aiming for "about 20" and planning to take my time about it. I headed over Bear Hill in Stoneham, past the golf course and into Stoneham center. Wound my way down toward the Spot Pond reservoir, and the Fellsway. I decided to pop into the Fells and run the orange trail which I hadn't really been on since I used to do a lot of mountain biking over there years ago. Running on the rocky, rooted single track of the orange trail is almost a different sport that road running. At times I got impatient picking my way along at 9-10 minute mile pace and a few times I popped off onto the fire roads around the reservoirs...but mostly I made my way around the entire orange trail and back to the entrance by the sheepfold parking lot and out onto the Fellsway.
There I kept going south and ran the loop around Spot Pond, back to Pond Street in Stoneham and headed the way I came. But near Bear Hill I turned onto Broadway and headed over to Wakefield Center and Lake Quannapowitt. At the Gazebo by the lake I was at 19 miles already and finally found my first water. I sucked down as much water as I could and the Gu that I'd been carrying for all 19 miles so far. I don't remember ever being so thirsty on a run.
From there I made my way down the lake shore via Main St and across the Wakefield rotary, past REI and up Salem Street in Reading to the square. I ran down Haven Street where the vendors were setting up for the street fair later today (which my daughter will participating in with her gymnastics academy), through the train station, up Prescott and home.
Garmie says it was about 22.7 miles and over 3 hours but here's the thing: my online training log at RunningAhead is DOWN right now and so I can't upload it. And I have to say I'm a little alarmed at just how much anxiety this fact is causing me. It was down before I went out--I know because I was planning to search for a route I'd created but couldn't thus the ad lib. And now it's still down. And so dependent have I become on my online tools that I can't even feel like the run is complete (i.e. be sure it actually happened) until I enter in my log and see it update my daily, weekly and monthly totals and make that tall orange bar on my summary graph representing today's run.
I need to feed my kids and shower now. I really stink. But I hope RunningAhead is up soon or I will start to freak out a little. And, yes, I hate myself a little for that fact.