Saturday, 02 November 2013 22:46

The Magical 32km Long Run


I wasn't sure if my knees would hold up or if my stamina would carry me through given that my marathon training had to take a back seat in view of the enormous workload and lack of sleep in the past months/weeks as well as the knee inflammation.

I started this morning's run anxious to see how far my legs could take me and hopeful that they would be able to carry me through to cover the magical 32km (or 20 miles), the longest run in the marathon training programme [I've never exceeded 32km in any of my previous marathon training programmes as I've always believed that once you hit 32km on the actual day, the last 10km is really mind over matter]. Hitting the 32km mark is both psychologically and physically important in the marathon training programme as both the brain and legs need to be conditioned to continue running for >3 hours. Nonetheless, I didn't want to/couldn't push myself too hard due to the risk of aggravating my injury.

The first 10km went by smoothly and the 10-20km went by rather slowly. By the time I went past the 20.8km mark, I was optimistic and looking forward to pushing myself towards the 32km point. I started trying to visualise what it would be like running in Antarctica in a few weeks' time and urged my legs to move on. I smiled from ear to ear upon reaching 30km as contentment, joy and relief filled me.

For all the pain, injuries, self-doubt and uncertainty hanging over my head since the 6th continent marathon in Rio de Janeiro in July 2013, the completion of today's 32km was significant as it gave me the much-needed confidence ahead of the final 7th continent marathon in Antarctica on 20 November 2013. 



Picture 007


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