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20 Miler

Saturday I completed one 20 miler for my marathon training.  (I'm trying to get in another next weekend.  I know I know, not how you're supposed to do it according to training plans, but you gotta do what you gotta do.)

This was one of those runs where I was on my way to the running path and had to reject the suggestion to just go sit at my favorite coffee shop and get a scone.  This was a mental one, I just had to get in the miles.

Most importantly, my knee didn't start screaming until mile 19.  Yes, then it became very difficult to run, but that's the latest it's flared up in this training cycle.  And, yes, a marathon is 26.2 miles, but I still have high hopes.

This is partly why:
#1 It is getting better.  
#2 Heading south I was ok in my shorts and T, but coming back north against the wind (already pretty tired), I was not focusing on my knee at all.  I was cold.  My muscles started tightening.  The last thing I was doing was checking-in on my knee to make sure it was loose, which I did the entire first half.

So this marathon training session has definitely been an uphill battle, which I honestly haven't taken very seriously so the marathon will probably be very interesting.  I'm going into it without a time goal at all.  Just going to run this one.  Or actually hope I can run this whole one because once my IT band flares up,  I honestly cannot run.

However, I have a story for you:
Mile 19
IT band yelling
(The last mile is always one of the worst anyway and this was at the extreme of that.)
I'm a half mile from home and I see there was a bike accident ahead of me.  Two bikes were down.  And this is why I love the running/biking culture in Chicago, as much as we annoy each other, we are there for each other.  
A legit biker (you can just tell) was in front of the accident, but must have heard it happen so he turned around to check everything out.  After asking the bikers if they were ok (they were) he started checking out their bikes to fix anything he could.
I kept going, but it warmed my heart (the only part of me that was warm at that moment). 

And I found out when I made my training calendar I marked the week before my marathon as my marathon.  So I've been training a week ahead and then I fell a week behind.  So actually come to find out I'm right on schedule ;)
This training season is a mess. 

I do appreciate having my marathon the weekend after the majority of the people training on the running path.  We're on opposite weeks.  Typically a marathon training schedule has you go further and then step back the next week, then further, then step back.  So I'm going further when they're stepping back and vice versa.  It makes the traffic a little bit lighter!

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