I'm sure all the visitors to the valley for the Super Bowl and PGA Tour may not have found 55 with a light rain may to be all that appealing but for someone who was heading out for a 20 miler it was perfect. Since I only had run 3 miles all week I knew my legs were going to be fresh and the course I was taking was flat for the most part, I was looking forward to a good run.
This wasn't a very exciting run but it was consistent with the first 13 miles pretty much falling in the 9:50-10:10 range. I also think I've found the sweet spot for HR at 133-136 and was able to stay in that range for these early miles. Unfortunately all good things must come to an end as my HR started to rise forcing me to slow my pace.
If getting in the miles and maintaining a decent pace weren't so important with a marathon in 2 weeks I would have certainly slowed it up or even cut the run short. Today, this wasn't an option and I urged myself on with BQ reminders. Right now the focus is to get a 26.2 under my belt but I want it to be with confidence so I allowed my HR to go higher than it should be since my legs felt better if I kept the pace up. I'm not sure if it's just me but doing the marathon shuffle just makes my legs sore.
As the last miles wound down and the run was coming toward the end I actually considered extending it but the rain started to come down a little harder and that idea was put to rest.
All in all I'm very happy with the way the run went. I finished up at 20.13 miles, a personal best, and even though I passed up on 20+ miles to rest my TFL, I still closed out January at 185.9 miles, another personal best.
Next week will be business as usual, although I may opt out of Monday's run, beginning with 9 tomorrow. The plan also calls for only 16 miles on the Lost Dutchman course next Saturday but those hills will make for a great final tune-up before an easy pre-race week.
Week ending January 31st - 32.2 miles
January total - 185.9 miles