Monday, September 19, 2011

The 22 mile Marine Corps Mock Run

After reexamining our schedule, Jay and I picked this past weekend for our longest run prior to the marathon. And, boy, was it the perfect day to run 22 miles of the course. When we left, the temperature was in the high 50s and by the time we returned home the temperature had leveled out in the mid-60s. I just hope we have such beautiful weather on race day!


And of course, cooler weather calls for the return of my knee-length running spandex :). You know how most people get excited about t-shirt and jean weather? Well I get way too excited for dry-fit t-shirt and knee-length spandex weather!

When devising our training schedule, we scheduled in a mock-course-run. Several fellow marathon runners said it really makes a difference if you run the course (in parts) before the race. Prior to this weekend, we actually have already run very close to this entire course.  Now we just put it all together!

MCM course map

In order to cut the race down to 22 miles, we cut out the portion along Canal Road (or the Capitol Crescent Trail). We also made some modifications so that we weren’t running on the highway, but on trails instead.

22 miles

We did very very well on this run, finishing in just under 4 hours and 15 minutes, putting us at an 11 min 35 sec pace. This put me at ease for crossing the bridge in the mandatory 14 minute mile pace. I know I shouldn’t be worried about crossing the bridge in time, but for some reason I am.


The pre-race jitters were definitely soothed during this run. We didn’t take our first Gu until the Key Bridge, which was a good mile after when we normally take one. We also walked less and were smarter about when we walked. Jay and I have always walked when we refuel. I can sip my water and run, but if I take a Gu or sport beans while running, my stomach gets angry. On Saturday, the few times we walked, we were efficient, eating and refilling water bottles or if we got caught at a red light we refueled then instead of waiting.

Overall, this run felt great! 22 down!! Only 4 more miles and we will have run a marathon. Crazy!!


Post run, we had a Vegetarian Chili Loaded Baked Potato. This was the perfect post run meal. It was healthy, filling and really refueled our bodies.


Every run, I feel like I learn something new. This run, my calves started to cramp up a bit at mile 15. I realized that I did not eat a lot of potassium this week. With only 40 days left till the marathon, I am going to start concentrating on eating exactly what I need to carry me through the finish line.