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Health & Outdoors

Third Time’s a Charm

So today I completed my 3rd 20-mile run :). As happened with running half-marathons, the third time proved to be the charm!

First of all, I was faster than ever. In fact, I ran 35 seconds per mile faster than last time. Secondly, I felt pretty good for the entire run, whereas on my previous two 20-milers, I was getting really tired by the last five or six miles.

Lastly, as I type this in the evening, I feel satisfied with the experience, as well as physical good. Always a sign of a successful run!

Contributing factors to today’s win:

  • I got up early and had a delicious banana smoothie beforehand
  • I brought two bottles of gatorade and sipped continually (but not too much); I also had a gel about an hour in
  • Running more often, but for shorter distances. I have been running 5 days a week the past month or so. This has caused me to shorten the runs overall, though it has led to an overall monthly increase in my miles.
  • For the past few months, I have been doing abs and core work outs 1-2 days a week on non-running days. I believe this has contributed to faster runs and being better conditioned overall.
  • There’s a psychological benefit of doing something at least three times. I overcame my fear of the longer run. Not only my body, but my mind had no reservations about it this time.

All in all, it was an amazing experience, and I am totally fired up!

American River, Sacramento, from this morning

As an “appendix” of sorts, I decided to create a little table* comparing my three 20-milers:

Comparing My Three 20-Mile Runs

DateDistanceTimeSpeedNotes
6/7/2020.00 miles3:01:409:05 min/ mileHuge accomplishment! Felt great elation afterward for hours. Last 5-6 miles were surprisingly difficult despite adequate nutrition and good preparatory runs in weeks prior. A milestone achievement nonetheless. Read more.
8/2/2020.02 miles2:59:068:57 min/ mileMade last-minute decision to do this while running. Finished slightly faster than first time, despite lack of proper nutrition 🙁 Was a slog, like first time. Made it through, but nearly blacked out afterward. Read more.
11/7/20 TODAY20.12 miles2:48:278:22 min/ milePulled it all together: excellent nutrition before & during, and I felt good the whole time. Honorable mention: Abs/core workouts 1-2 times per week since Summer also seem to have helped.

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