16 WEEKS UNTIL SKYLINE CHALLENGE
Mistakes were made today.
Yesterday I made the mistake of looking at a calendar. I was immediately struck by a bone-deep horror when I realized that I only have 4 months to train for the Skyline Challenge. I’ve got to go from being a lazy slob to running 22.5 miles in 5 hours. That means I have to sustain a pace of 13:20 or less to finish the Challenge. Consider me kicked in the ass.
I spent some time last night working up a new training schedule that includes three runs a week, two spin classes a week, two swims a week at minimum. On Saturdays that I don’t work, I can take an extra spin class, and some Fridays I can do a short track run like I used to on Friday nights.
The marathon itself is further away – 6 months – but if I can complete the Skyline challenge (and that’s really all I want), the marathon will be a piece of cake. I’ll have an hour to run another 4 miles, and I’ll have 2 more months to get ready. It’s still scary and I can’t believe I’m considering doing either of them, but I’ve done scarier things and come out the other side in one piece.
Today I went to spin class, which was rough considering it’s been like a month since I’ve been to it, followed by a nice easy 3 mile run. In 96 degree weather. If you don’t believe in climate change I’m not sure what to tell you except go outside and run in this heat that was definitely not this intense last summer. I know, I was running in it last year too.
I came very close to heat exhaustion today. Scratch that. I fell victim to heat exhaustion today. By the end of the run I was dizzy and my face was dry, in large part because the (only) water fountain that’s at my halfway point was either turned off or broken so I ran 3 miles in the heat with zero hydration besides the two bottles of water I drank at the Y. I was too overheated to even finish walking to my car so I laid on a bench in the shade until I felt better, then went back to my car and chugged another bottle of water.
Lesson learned, I guess. This weekend when I get paid I am definitely getting a hydration belt. I even know which one I want. I cannot get through another distance run without one, especially one longer than 3 miles.