Well folks, this weekend I completed my longest long run (20 miles) and we are officially two weeks away from the Boston Marathon!
When I realized I was going to miss the group longest long run I wasn’t sure I had it in me to run 20 miles by myself. Luckily, I didn’t have to! I met a really awesome lady named Nicole who lives in my neighborhood and who also missed the longest long run. So on Saturday morning we hopped on the commuter rail to South Station and took it to Framingham. From there we started our journey of running 20 miles along the marathon course.
Well, after we stopped at a Dunkin Donuts to use the bathroom.
Based on my doctor’s recommendations coming off of my three weeks in a boot, we opted to do intervals of 3 miles running and a half mile walking. Unfortunately it was cold and rainy the whole time so we were soaked almost instantly.
By the time we made it to just over 8 miles into our run, we spotted the Wellesley Marathon Sports and stopped in for some sports drink. What we didn’t anticipate was just how amazing the store employees were. Not only did they provide us with some really great sports drink (Skratch Labs – you should try it!), they offered us dry socks! At first I turned them down, but when Nicole put on her pair and told me how amazing it felt to have dry socks, I took them up on it.
Sure enough, I felt like a new woman! With that we were off to finish the run.
As we rounded the corner at Commonwealth Avenue just before Heartbreak Hill (somewhere around mile 13ish), we stopped for a photo in front of the Firehouse. Let’s just say I’m not an expert at jumping shots.
Another stop at the Heartbreak Hill Running Company afforded us a much-needed bathroom break and allowed me to get some antibiotic ointment for the blisters that had been created and then popped along my collarbone from my wet shirt rubbing it for 14 miles. Yeah, I’ll spare you a photo of that.
With about six miles to go we left HHRC and mounted the infamous heartbreak hill. Nicole and I had both run it on previous training runs, so we knew what to expect. It was great to do it with so many miles under our belts considering on race day we’ll be doing it after already running 20 miles.
We noticed several signs along Commonwealth Ave. reminding drivers about race day (and that the roads would all be closed off) so of course I got a photo with the sign. Consider this your reminder to donate before this date.
Looking back I suppose this sign was actually before HHRC, since I accidentally left my beanie behind after our bathroom stop. Either way, you get the idea.
We ran alongside Boston College and then through Cleveland Circle onto Beacon Street, which we followed all the way to Kenmore Square. I snagged a running photo of one of my favorite marathon signs along the way.
Finally we were back on Commonwealth Ave, but we were so caught up in hitting the 20 mile mark that we totally missed the turn onto Hereford that would have led us to Boylston and to the finish line. Instead we finished on Commonwealth and rejoiced that even if we didn’t cross the finish (yet), we logged our 20 miles and officially finished our longest long run.
We celebrated with a quick photo and the obligatory upload to Strava.
After getting an Uber back to Charlestown, I made myself an ice bath to help my legs recover and passed the time sitting in the tub thinking about how grateful I am for all of the support I’ve received from friends, family, acquaintances, and strangers during this marathon training cycle.
As of today I am just over $1,000 from hitting my minimum fundraising commitment for BIDMC. That means that I have already raised almost $5,000 for this amazing cause. I can’t get over how supportive everyone has been and I am positive I am going to hit my fundraising minimum by race day, but I need your continued help and support to get there.
Every donation will help patients at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and donations are tax deductible. BIDMC is near and dear to me, which if you haven’t already you can read about on my fundraising page.
I hope you’ll consider donating if you haven’t already. With just two weeks to go the pressure is on, but so is all of the excitement of race day. With this longest long run under my belt, I’m ready!