Sunday, April 1, 2012

20 mile assist

I'm no where near fit for a 20 mile run, but my running friend, Sarah, is. Today was her big pre-marathon 20-miler leading to her taper for the San Luis Obispo Marathon. I had been doing training runs with Sarah in January/February as I was in between training plans and wanted to keep my miles up.

Then I ran in those sexy Brooks PureFlows two weeks ago without a gradual build-up, and caused this flare up of plantar fasciitis. Stupid girl! Still watching the foot, no run training for now.

With just her 20 left before the taper, I still wanted to be able to help with marathon training and I also wanted to get some exercise in myself. This is when my dim little bulb flicked on: "I'll rollerblade Sarah's 20! I can carry the water and other supplies in a backpack! I will be a really useful engine, just like Thomas."

I can tell you I feel about as smart as Thomas right now. You see, I don't rollerblade. I have some skates that I bought off Craig's List years ago then never used. But I could learn over 20 miles, right? I roller and ice skated a lot as a kid, no problem!

We set out from 60 Acres Park in Redmond, WA and took off on the nice, paved Sammamish River Trail. The last time I ran here, it was with Sarah and it was SNOWING! We set off and it was grand. But, I have to admit, in-line skating was not so smooth for me. I have poor technique (ummm...never bladed before!) and had to work hard to keep up with my runner.

By about 8 miles I could feel rubbing in my right arch and inside right ankle. Not nice. Fortunately, my left foot was completely taped up for my PF so I had no chafing issues there. 12 miles to go?
My attempt at 2 different taping techniques
There is a lot to say about this run and I would encourage you to read about it on Sarah's blog, as she was the one who was actually running. Me, I was just the fool who tagged along and tried to be useful. But you know, it was rough! At 8 miles I was getting sore, at 14 miles I was wondering why I thought this would be a good idea. At 16 miles, we ran into a horrible headwind and I wanted to call a cab.

I was pushing hard to move forward and not let the wind push me backward. Poor Sarah! This was especially tough running with that wind. I wished I wasn't such a spaz that she could have run behind me for some wind relief. I think it was around 17 miles that I totally fell for no reason. That was my second fall, a good one. I got a few scrapes today but fortunately, nothing really hurt and my falls felt pretty padded (lots of Girl Scout cookie-induced padding going on lately).

With 3 miles to go, I wanted to scream. I knew I had a blister the size of my arch and my ankle was getting rubbed totally raw. Then I felt like such a lame ass because Sarah was running all this way, at least I got to coast once in a while!

At 18 miles, I still wondered if we would make it. The wind! My blisters! The wind! Horrible. Sarah was a trooper, kept plugging along. That 18th mile felt like the longest mile I've ever done. Then, in the final mile, things picked up again. When her Garmin bleeped at 20, it was music to my ears! What a relief!

I'm so happy for Sarah for knocking this one out - 20 miles in 3:25 - and I look forward to hearing about her race.
Me, I'm going to lay off the skates for a while and stick with the pool and bike. I definitely got a good workout in and wonder how walking will feel tomorrow?


  1. OUCH! Ouch ouch ouch!

  2. Ohhhmmmmmgggggggggeeeeeeeeeeee - that looks painful. A good idea, but maybe 20 on rollerblades is a bit much.

  3. WOW (and ouch)! That looks really painful. You are crazy and amazing all at the same time- who else would think to do something like this?!? I hope you get practiced up, when I get up to 20 miles I want a rollerblade assistant :) Just kidding haha!

  4. Well done for doing this, both of you! That is some nasty blisters!

  5. That blister looks terrible. OUCH...I can't believe you still kept going!

  6. You are simply amazing! I needed you on this run for way more reasons than carrying my water and I am so sorry I was the reason for that blister!
    All things happen for a reason-sorry this is a painful reason-but by the time the blister heels, maybe your PF will be all good!
    Thanks again for ALL of your support! You are amazing!

  7. oh my. that looks insanely painful. :( you are a great running/skating partner though :):)

  8. You DO need to submit that for that blister competition! You are amazing and such a good friend for doing this. Hopefully there weren't too many hills - I was obsessed with roller blading when I was 11 until a HUGE HILL left me in the ER with stitches. I've kind of shied away from rollerblades since then and am TERRIFIED to go down hills. You are AWESOME!

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  10. The entire time I was reading this post I knew the blister picture was coming. I felt prepared for it. Until I saw it. Holy cow! That is one mean blister! Dang!!! Hope it heals quickly!

  11. Ah, that looks terrible!!!

  12. Ouch! Alma, that looks like it HURTS!
    (and I'll bet you're thinking: "Beth, that's the understatement of the year!")

  13. Wow that looks horribly painful...hope it heal(s)fast...Can't wait to read some more of your journey with running.