That’s a whooooole lot of running. Seriously. I am in shock I ran that much and didn’t collapse or anything, haha. Wow. It took a long time; it got to the point where the legs were feeling like lead. Took a few extended stops (washroom, stretching, water/Gatorade refills.) Still, I did it!!!! I’m surprisingly not super sore, either (we’ll see if that still holds tomorrow!) At the advice of one of my teammates I took an ice cold bath when I got home in order to reduce inflammation. Then I took a two hour nap because I was pretty beat. When I woke up I iced my legs on and off for an hour or so. I just took an Epsom salt bath and am icing my legs again. I’m hoping all this will ward off the stiffness for tomorrow.
The morning was looking pretty dreary: rainy, overcast, a bit chilly. I decided to not take my jacket figuring the running would warm me up enough. I’m glad I made that decision because it stopped raining and the sun came out and it was great weather for most of the run.
We went around Science World, through Gastown (where homeless people and the motorcycle show people cheered us on, lol.) Stopped at a Starbucks for a washroom break where the manager was really nice, cleaning up one of the washroom’s for us. As we were waiting to use them he asked me, “so how far are you running today?” to which I replied “oh, just 30 kilometres.” (It came out sounding a lot more casual than I intended.) I went into the washroom at that point and one of my teammate’s said the guy looked at him like “holy crap?! ‘just 30km?!’ like it’s a walk around the block…I’m going to go back to my espresso.” lol.
We then ran through Coal Harbour, stopped at the Nike Runner’s Lounge for some Gatorade, which was great. The employee’s were all excited to see us so I think that gave us a boost of energy. They had a couple of massage therapists in there and I think everyone on the team was looking at them thinking “JEALOUS! I want a massage now!” We were about half way into the run at this point.
We continued along the seawall and up Prospect Point, which is where some pain started in my left knee. Finally made it up that steep (and seemingly endless) hill and stopped a bit at the top for a stretch to try to see if the pain would dissipate. We continued on to Third Beach…Second Beach (stopped a couple of times for stretching/speed walk break lol)…to the Burrard Street Bridge. (Yes, that’s right we went around the entirety of Stanley Park!!) May I reiterate once again how spoiled I am for getting to run along the gorgeous beaches, forest, and with the Rockies in clear view as a bonus? Sooo incredible, as always.
I think the hardest part was after the Burrard Bridge because we knew we were sooo close to Granville Island but we had to take a round about way to get the distance in. Followed Cornwall to Cypress, went down to Macdonald (which is quite a ways.) Looped around up to another stupid (albiet shorter) steep hill which REALLY hurt going up so we decided to walk at a fast pace up it because at that point the legs weren’t going to pick up enough to run at a decent pace anyway.
Fortunately, it leveled out and we came back around to Macdonald and made a wrong turn, having to backtrack two blocks and then ran back to Burrard Street and over the homestretch to Granville Island. It’s amazing how as soon as you realize how little left there is left that you get a burst of energy.
It was definitely a tough run in the mental sense. When we got to three hours of running we started laughing because it just seemed so ridiculous that we had been running THAT long, like “this is insane; we are insane” haha. I think we knew we were crazy when we had been running for two hours and it seemed like no big deal.
Endurance running is a funny thing because you get to the point where you’re lungs and heart are fine running for 2.5-3 hrs but your body is just screaming at you while your brain is telling you to go faster. I had some doubts at points and every time a tourist trolley went past it was tempting to get on. After walking for about two minutes I had to give myself a pep talk. I’ve come extremely far and the end was in site…I knew I could do it but it was certainly hard to muster some extra inner strength when my legs didn’t seem to want to do what my brain was telling them to. At another point it was kind of like running fartlek’s in the sense of “make it to that tree ok now to the saltwater pool” etc. (though I assure you no sprinting was being done at that point!) Also, I think going from 24k one week to 30k is a pretty big leap and quite the accomplishment no matter how long it takes.
In terms of on-the-run nutrition and hydration I didn’t managing that well today. I brought along with me one gel and a pack of Sharkies. I forgot to take the gel until over an hour into it and hated the flavour. So I couldn’t force myself to finish it even and didn’t remember I had the Sharkies. I had probably the equivalent of maybe 350mL of Gatorade and 500mL of water through the entire run. At one stop I was able to get another gel and ate about half of that. I did run out of liquid for maybe the last 8k or so which was a bit tough to deal with.
After the run I forced myself to eat a Clif protein bar and drink a bottle of water. I wasn’t hungry but I knew that I needed to replenish nutrients to help aide in muscle recovery. I think I consumed around 500 cals with the gel, Gatorade, and energy bar. I still only ate about 500 more cals today but I just don’t feel hungry and had to force that still. Which is not good considering I burned probably around 1,300 from the run anyway. Does anyone have suggestions for this? (I know, lame that I am asking a nutrition question, haha.)
This post is really long as is so I think I will just end it here! All in all it was an amazing run!!!