26 In Fitness/ Running

Marathon Training – 16 Miles

Hey heeeey!

As you know, this past Saturday was my first 16 mile run, ever!

It went…well it kept going and going and going to be honest. But overall, it went well, and my only complaints stem from the last two miles. It was a great confidence booster knowing that I could physically make it a half marathon PLUS a 5K, and the thought of just adding 2 more miles this Saturday doesn’t sound quite so bad anymore!

Let me break it down for you.

Instead of doing my long run first thing Saturday morning, bright and early, I opted to sleep in and rest since I know that’s what I needed most. This girl was more than thrilled to do the same since we had some extra space in the bed 🙂

sleeping with a black lab

Adam was gone camping all weekend so I had all the time in the world on Saturday to get myself to the lake, run around it 8 times, and come home and crash for the night. Yes, you read that right. The loop around our lake is 2 miles, and I ran it 8 times. Before you think I’m crazy, consider this: thinking to yourself  “8 more laps…7 more laps…6 more laps…” sounds A LOT less daunting than “16 more miles…15 more miles…14 more miles…” Long runs are a mind game, and I refuse to let them win! Plus since Adam was out of town I felt safer doing a long run closer to home.

I took Nicole’s advice, and tried not to focus so much on my pace as much. I slowed things down, and tried my best to hover around a 9 minute mile instead of trying to stay under a 9 minute mile. It was almost impossible for me to hold myself back and not let my Garmin get the most of me, but the end goal is to FINISH my marathon (all be it in a decent time), NOT get injured, and NOT screw over my feet and knees for the rest of my life because I am dead set on maintaining a certain pace. Maybe for my second marathon I’ll push it a little bit more, but since I have no idea how my body will physically hold up, I want to make sure I have some gas left in the tank for the higher miles!

I stayed hydrated, and fueled every 2 miles, even continuing to fuel and hydrate on my way home. I switched between Shot Bloks, PowerBar Energy Blasts, Gatorade (thanks to some genius recommendations!), and water.

Here’s how it went down:

Miles 1-5: 8:56, 9:01, 9:03, 9:11

Miles 5-8: 8:57, 9:05, 8:59, 9:05

Miles 9-12: 9:03, 9:18, 9:12, 9:08

Miles 13-16: 9:14, 9:27, 9:55, 10:48

marathon training in little rock arkansas

9:55? 10:48? Yikes! I haven’t seen those times in a LONG time! I was so frustrated because my cardio felt fine, I wasn’t out of breath at all, I wasn’t tired, but my feet hurt SO BAD I was almost in tears. Miles 15 and 16 were a bit of a struggle and when I finished I was so mad and concerned why my feet were screaming at me. I thought, “there is absolutely no way I can add 10 more miles with my feet hurting like this!” I’ve never wished for a mile to be over so bad as I was wishing mile 16 was over. I got in my car and went home and immediately started to ice my arches and feet and figure out why they had failed me those last two miles!



I NEED NEW SHOES! Hellerrrr, the ones I’ve been running in I got LAST fall, raced my spring half marathon in them, raced all summer in them, raced the half a few weeks ago in them, and I was convinced that they were still fine and in good enough shape to make it through my marathon. Definitely not. Thanks to one of my best friends back home who’s studying to be a PT, who pretty much hit me upside the head via text messaging, she convinced me that my problem really was lying in my shoes and I needed to order a new pair ASAP so I could break them in before the marathon. Ok, ok, Tonya, you win 🙂

So, today I pulled the trigger on the newest version of my current running shoes, the Brooks Ravenna 4’s in White/Tile Blue/Lime

brooks ravenna 4 for women

Aren’t they pretty? My Sweat Pink pink shoelaces that I’ve been saving for a new pair of shoes will look lovely and flashy on these bad boys! I’ve got 4 weeks until race day to break them in, and I think if I do it wisely I should be fine!

Guys, I don’t know if it’s because I’m a first time marathoner, or if it’s in my head, but they aren’t joking when they say running a MARATHON versus a HALF-MARATHON are two completely different ball games! Let’s be real, if you can run 7-8 miles without dying, you can more than likely complete a half-marathon fine and dandy. But a marathon I’ve learned, takes waaaaaay more preparation! I hate that I’ve already slacked off a little during my training, but I can’t believe how much harder it is on your body, exponentially, just adding a mile or two on top of 13.1! I almost feel like for every mile you add on top of 13.1, your body thinks you’ve added 5! It’s also possible my body feels this way because I’m piggy backing marathon training right off of an intense half marathon training, have now technically run 3 half marathons plus some in just 3 weeks (something my feetsies definitely have never experience), I have no idea what to expect and my body is asking me “what the heck are you doing to me??” I can’t wait to get #1 out of the way, so when I train for #2 I’ll have so much more knowledge and know what to expect at each mile! The big 18 is this weekend, and my 20 is the week after that…I can’t even imagine running 20 miles, but to think how much closer I will be to 26.2 is so exciting!!!

And now for some motivation from a marathoner who knows her stuff!


Blogger Feature: Fit Life Forward

I came across Kayla’s blog about a week ago because we are both Sweat Pink Ambassadors. Let me tell you, this girl is awesome! I always love finding new running blogs because it’s a fun and easy way to get inspired and there are so many runners out there that you can look up to! I asked her if she would be willing to answer a few questions and be featured on my blog, and she gladly said yes! So without further ado, meet: Kayla Moothart! She blogs over at Fit Life Forward         so be sure and check her blog out when you leave here!

1. Tell us a little about yourself…how long you’ve been running, family, etc – 
Hi! My name is Kayla and I write about my running and life adventures over at Fit Life Forward. I live in the lovely Pacific NorthWest with my husband and our two kittens. We just bought our first home in the spring are very excited to be new homeowners. I began running at the tail end of college after meeting my husband who was on a scholarship for running… he has now quit running but I have kept moving forward.
kayla moothart fit life foward
2. What inspired you to start your blog?
I can’t remember exactly why I started writing my Fit Life Forward (the name has changed since the very beginning), but I figured it was a good way to document my life and focus on the great things that happened every day. Like a picture journal. Now I have come to love the community of ‘BlogLand’ and how supportive and encouraging it is!
3. What is your favorite race distance and why?

This question is always so tough. I LOVE the half marathon because I can usually always run that distance. It doesn’t take too much to train for and you can still run at a faster pace without wanting to die.. as much. I also LOVE the full marathon because it is a huge enigma… there are so many different aspects that have to come together to make a great race and the challenge is in figuring out what will make you preform your best on race day.
fit life forward
4. How many marathons have you run, and which was your favorite. Also, any tips for marathon beginners?
I just ran my 11th marathon a little over a week ago. It is hard to pick my very favorite but I am going to have to say the Portland Marathon. I had been wanting to run it for the past couple of years and finally got to this October. I ran a great race, the weather was fantastic, the course was wonderful and there were a ton of spectators cheering you on in the last 6 miles. It was put on very smoothly too which is always a good.
5. What are a few of your favorite “running accessories”?
The things that I HAVE to have when I run are definitely quality basics. I love my Moving Comfort sports bra… I can’t run in anything else without getting bad chaffes under my sports bra line. For the same reason – BodyGlide is a must. I also love the Mizuno Wave Riders and Wave Sayanaras! They are comfortable keep me going through all the miles! Not to mention I like the look too. I use the Timex Run Trainer to keep track of my runs and love all of the different settings it has and how customizable it is.
fit life forward blog
6. What is your favorite aspect of running? Is it the health benefits? How it makes you feel? Accomplishing your goals?
Everything! Everything! Everything! The health. The freedom. The challenge. The ease. The friendships. The competition. The races. The medals. The pride. The sweat. The strength. The peace. The community. The gear. I love everything about it.
7. Do you prefer trail marathons or road marathons?

I like running and racing on all surfaces. I think that part of being a runner is being well balanced (just like with everything in life) and spending time in nature is important for all people (in my opinion) just like needing the loud cheers and encouragement during a road race is an experience everyone should have too!
marathon runner kayla moothart
8. What are your goals for your upcoming races?
I just finished a big racing binge… I guess you could call it. 4 marathons in 6 weeks. I’m going to scale back a little bit and work on speed and train according to a 10k plan. I will be running some half marathons during this training, but I’m going to be focusing on track workouts and tempo runs. Then I’m going to come back and hopefully run as close to 3:30 as possible at the LA Marathon in March.
You can catch up with Kayla on Twitter, Facebook, and BlogLovin!
Have you found any new blogs lately? What were your thoughts while training for your first marathon? 


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  • Reply
    Leslee @ Her Happy Balance
    November 13, 2013 at 8:54 am

    Yay, congrats on your first ever 16 miles! The new shoes are such a cool color…I need a new pair myself and love seeing what everyone is rockin’.

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      November 14, 2013 at 11:28 am

      Leslee- Thanks! I LOVE the colors of the new Ravennas…I can’t wait to see what they come out with next! What is your go-to shoe??

  • Reply
    Jana @ Happy Wife Healthy Life
    November 13, 2013 at 9:18 am

    Congrats on 16 miles girl! Running a half was such a big deal for me, I can’t even imagine 16! Your training though is really motivating me to sign up for a race though. It is definitely encouraging to see that even if something doesn’t seem possible (like how you said your 20 mile run coming up!) you keep pushing forward and keep proving it is possible!

    Awesome split times too girl!

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      November 14, 2013 at 11:28 am

      Jana- Girl, if I can do it, you can!! And now is the perfect time of year too 🙂 Sign up for a half in like March, and if you start training now you’ll be ready to rock it!

  • Reply
    Beth @ Mangoes and Miles
    November 13, 2013 at 9:41 am

    Huge congrats on the 16 miles! I completely understand when you say that every mile over 13.1 seems like 5–my 14 miler that I did earlier this fall felt SO much harder than say, a 12 miler. It’s weird the games you play with your mind after a set point in time just to get through it. 😛 And that’s good that you caught your shoe thing now, instead of after you got injured. It would be terrible to be sidelined for something as little as that!
    Beth @ Mangoes and Miles recently posted…I Know Where I’ll Be Every TuesdayMy Profile

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      November 14, 2013 at 11:27 am

      Beth- Yes!!! I’m not the only one!! I’m sure one day when we’re both marathon pros we won’t feel this way anymore 🙂 How is your half training coming along, now that you’ve realigned your goals and got your plan made? How did the first few days go??

  • Reply
    Nicole @ Work in Sweats Mama
    November 13, 2013 at 10:40 am

    I know this sounds totally crazy, but you might want to ditch the Garmin for some of your long runs. For training runs, the distance is really what matters, not the pace. So, be proud of running longer than you ever have before and don’t sweat the time.

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      November 13, 2013 at 10:54 am

      Nicole- I’ve thought about that actually!! I’m just too picky I think to not know what my times are! Ahh the Garmin is such a curse sometimes!!

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      November 14, 2013 at 11:26 am

      Nicole- Crazy, yes 😉 but smart, probably so! I think it’s almost easier for me though to know what my pace is so I don’t run too fast, which is a problem, I always seem to go out too fast then regret it later!

  • Reply
    Ashley @ Power, Love, and Self-Discipline
    November 13, 2013 at 10:49 am

    Love your first description of the run…it kept going and going and going! Haha, that’s what keeps me from long distance running!!

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      November 14, 2013 at 11:25 am

      Ashley- hahaha well it’s so true! You can totally do long distance, it’s such a different mindset I’m learning!

  • Reply
    November 13, 2013 at 12:25 pm

    My arches have been really lately — especially after runs and ironically enough, when I wear flats. I KNOW it’s because I need new shoes, and dang it I just need to suck it up and go buy them!

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      November 14, 2013 at 11:24 am

      Ashley- My arches hurt when I wear flats too! It can’t be good on my feet to constantly be going from good support in my running shoes to flat, flat shoes at work! Doooo it, new shoes is a great feeling! I ordered mine on Amazon…no tax and free shipping 🙂

  • Reply
    November 13, 2013 at 2:20 pm

    Congrats on running 16 miles for the first time. What a milestone! I think buying new shoes is a great idea. Easy fix!
    Tina@GottaRunNow recently posted…10 Goals for the WeekMy Profile

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      November 14, 2013 at 11:23 am

      Tina- Thanks! I think so, I’m glad I FINALLY went ahead and ordered a new pair! Too much closer to the race and I would have been out of time to break them in safely!

  • Reply
    Kristin @ A Mom on the Run
    November 13, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    You’re going to do great — your training times are incredible! I slow down a lot on my long training runs so I’m interested to see how that translates into a marathon finish time.

    Don’t stress over the 18-miler this weekend, you’re going to KILL it!
    Kristin @ A Mom on the Run recently posted…Twenty Mile Weekend!My Profile

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      November 14, 2013 at 11:23 am

      Kristin- I think you’re going to be surprised at how well you do! I can’t wait to hear about it!! I’m pretty nervous about the 18 miler..but I keep reminding myself it’s just TWO MORE MILES than last week!

  • Reply
    Anna @ Running On Plenty
    November 13, 2013 at 4:09 pm

    Yeahhhhhh 16 miles!!!! I’m so proud of you! That is so far. One day I’ll be as cool as you.

    I’m glad you got new shoes. That could lead to SO MUCH NONSENSE! Those old shoes had way too many miles on them. Toot to Tonya for whipping you into shape!
    Anna @ Running On Plenty recently posted…Holiday Gift Guide: The Fitness FreakMy Profile

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      November 14, 2013 at 11:22 am

      Anna- haha! Girl, you are already way cooler 🙂

  • Reply
    Mindy @ Road Runner Girl
    November 13, 2013 at 4:32 pm

    16 miles is awesome! It’s always one of the toughest long runs mentally for me when I’m marathon training. I can’t believe you ran around a lake 8 times! You rock girl! Good luck with the rest of your training! And the shoes are super pretty!
    Mindy @ Road Runner Girl recently posted…Family Fun at Fort Gaines!My Profile

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      November 14, 2013 at 11:20 am

      Mindy- I’m glad I’m not the only one who thought 16 was pretty tough! Haha yea, 8 times was a doozy!

  • Reply
    November 13, 2013 at 7:29 pm

    Congratulations, I love your mind trickery! I do loops too but I never thought of my runs in terms of loops!
    Have you tried compression socks? I know that sometimes they save my arches! I couldn’t stop laughing at Judge Judy, finally had to cover her and read around her haha!! You can absolutely do 26.2 miles – just five more laps!!
    You’re going to be amazing, I can’t wait to hear about #2 😉
    Thanks for introducing us to Kayla!!
    Thoughts during training: “This really sucks, when can I do it again?!”
    Emily recently posted…It’s a Vegan Thanksgiving: SidesMy Profile

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      November 14, 2013 at 11:19 am

      Emily- Haha thanks! Mind trickery is sometimes a must! I do wear compression socks, in fact I wear them on almost every run, but I didn’t on this run because I wore my tights!

  • Reply
    November 15, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    I love finding new blogs. I get sucked in so easily which is a good thing! 🙂 I haven’t trained for a marathon…YET! It is on my list for next year for sure. However, I did train for a half marathon and I continue to keep running long distances so that my legs remember what running 12-13 miles feels like! Happy Friday!!:D

  • Reply
    Kristina @ Blog About Running
    November 16, 2013 at 12:12 pm

    That lake is gorgeous, I would love to run laps around it 🙂 And you are so right, 8, 7. 6 sounds a lot more manageable than 16,15, 14 BUT either way you got it done and are sooooo awesome for doing it!! Those new shoes look awesome and I bet you will feel a big difference on your next long run in them! 🙂
    Kristina @ Blog About Running recently posted…Coping the Best Way I Know How…My Profile

  • Reply
    TestX Core
    June 8, 2016 at 11:28 pm

    Thanks for sharing your experience to us. It’s great to know that you enjoyed what you’re doing. Running is life. Keep inspiring everyone.

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