Ft. Lauderdale & 20 Ugly Miles

So yeah, I am at the Ft. Lauderdale Boat Show. Sounds swanky right? It’s not. Well, it is, because there are a ton of beautiful boats (and people) and there is alot of money being spent on some absolutely amazing yachts, but working the boat show is really not so glamorous at all. While I love my job and especially the people I get the pleasure to work with, I can’t say that the boat shows themselves (especially the 2 Big Ones – Ft. Lauderdale & Miami) are all that much fun. Sure it is an absolute blast to party like crazy with see all my colleagues and friends in the industry, the super long days of standing on your feet in the South Florida heat or braving the torrential downpours and flooding booths is tough.

I definitely don’t want this post to be about me complaining, because I really have had a blast this week, but let’s get one thing straight. My. Body. Hates. Me. Between the late nights of drinking, small amounts of sleep, big meals at night following not eating much all day, and standing/walking 10 hours a day, I have not treated my body well this week. Let me explain…

Fortunately I did my speed work on Thursday morning, after a relatively early bedtime (11 pm) and only a few margaritas on Wednesday night. And after last week’s speed work fail, I was pleasantly surprised with how strong I felt. I did have a rude awakening on the last 3×800’s when I turned around into the wind, but I finished strong and hit my paces.

Then, this pretty much sums up how we spent Thursday and Friday nights.

It was a disaster (but fun!). There was a lot of drunkenness (is that a word?) and singing and laughing and table/stage/pole dancing. It was great. Needless to say it made for some rough mornings.

I had to reschedule procrastinate my long run until Sunday because I had a commitment with a customer at 9 a.m. on Saturday morning. Even if I was out the door at 5, I would have been cutting it close to get 20 miles and a shower in before that. Plus see above for how I spent Friday night.

And of course, as luck would have it, the rain came. It started raining Saturday afternoon while I was on the docks at the show and it rained, and rained and rained and rained. When I got up Sunday morning at 5 to run, it was still raining. I laid back down in bed and decided to sleep until 6 and see if it stopped. But I was feeling guilty and anxious so I couldn’t go back to sleep. I decided to get dressed and run the first 5-6 miles on the dreadmill before finishing up outside. By the time I got ready and hit the hotel gym, I looked outside and saw that the rain had gone from coming down in sheets to “only” a steady drizzle. I looked at the dreadmill, started feeling guilty about not preparing myself for race day (I mean, it has rained the last 2 years at the Houston Marathon) and decided to put on my big girl panties and go run outside.

The first 3 miles SUCKED. It was raining, super windy and miserable. Once I got off of the beach and into downtown Ft. Lauderdale area, the rain basically stopped and things started to get better. But this is about when I started to get really confused by my pace. I would have absolutely sworn that I was running 9:00 min miles. This has been my long run pace for the last 6 weeks and on these flat roads, I just knew I was keeping that same pace. But my watch kept saying I was running 9:2x – 9:40. WHAT?! I would have bet my house that the satellites were off, but eventually I realized that this is just what my body had. My legs and feet (and liver!) were beat up and my body didn’t want to run any faster. I was a little disappointed in myself at first, but I knew that it would be a long 20 miles if I tried to push my body harder than it wanted to go pace-wise and convinced myself that the pace didn’t matter. As long as I got the 20 miles in, I would be happy. I also knew that the target pace for the first 20-miler in my training plan is MP + 60 seconds and I knew if I finished the last few miles strong, I could get the average back down in that range.

Miles 1 – 5: 9:24, 8:59, 9:23, 9:40, 9:28

I took a Gu at mile 5 and once I finally settled in and accepted the pace, the miles starting ticking off more quickly. I told myself, just get to 10 and you will make it. But there were still huge water puddles everywhere and I kept getting my feet soaked and I really wasn’t having that much fun. I stopped at a port-0-potty somewhere around mile 7 in front of a humungous house that was under construction. It was disgusting! But I was glad it was there. Then I stopped at Starbucks at about mile 8 to refill my bottles. They weren’t even half empty, but I knew with the humidity and the fact that I would spent the next 5 miles in neighborhoods with no stops, I would be better off getting water there than running out later.

Miles 6 – 10: 9:35, 9:40, 9:35, 9:31, 9:16

I really like the neighborhood part of this course, which took me up through mile 14. It is protected from the brutal wind, has some good scenery and made me feel like I was making progress to get to that magic 20th mile. It was also finally light outside and I could see the puddles to avoid them better. At mile 14, I was out of water so I stopped again, this time at a CVS to refill my bottles. The water fountain had the slowest stream ever, but it was COLD and it felt awesome to have cold water to cool me down a little!

Mile 11-15: 9:26, 9:27, 9:26, 9:31, 9:20

Getting back to A1A along the beach put me in the final stretch. I had cold water and was ready to pick up the pace and finish strong. I had to go 1.5 miles on an out-and-back so that I would finish near my hotel. With the killer wind, this part might have been really rough, except that I knew I was close to the end and was almost there. Finally I hit my turnaround and had the wind behind me for the final 3 miles. Unfortunately all my excitement about cold water at mile 14, meant that I drank way too much (or just enough since I was sweating so much!) and was out of water again at 17! I stopped AGAIN at Walgreen’s and was rewarded with more super cold water! The stopping and starting hurt a lot at that point and I hated that I made 3 water stops. Since I am not used to this heat and humidity like I was in the Greenville summer months, it is probably better that I drank tons of water. Weird things started hurting around mile 18.5, like the top of my foot, my quad muscles and even my upper body. But I kept pushing and finally my watch beeped for mile 20!!

Miles 16 – 20: 9:17, 9:04, 8:59, 8:49, 843 (Woohoo! Back on track in the final 4 miles!)

Overall pace: 9:20 min/mile (MP + 57 seconds = still on target!)

Everything hurt when I stopped running. I walked limped about a half mile back to the hotel, stretched really well and took a nice, cold ice bath. Unfortunately I was in a hurry to meet a friend for coffee before heading to work at the show so that was all the relaxing that I got and I was then headed out to be on my feet for the rest of the day! Surprisingly, being on my feet all day kept my legs super loose and I felt much better than I do when I veg on the couch all day after a long run.

I did get a nap much later in the day before I refueled with TONS of sushi and great company with my team!



It was yummy! And I am pretty sure I ate my weight in sushi 🙂

We finished off the week with more boat show, more drinking and a hockey game (Florida Panters vs. Winnipeg)!

The game was really fun, despite that it was FREEZING in there and the only thing that was ordered to eat in our suite was fried food and pizza. By this time, my body had enough of all the damage I had done to it and I didn’t think it could take much more.

But my stomach and I both survived and there will be a lot of hydrating and clean, healthy eating done in the coming days to prepare for Savannah THIS WEEKEND!! Ahhhh!!!

About Corey

I am a 30-something swim, bike, run addict married to my best friend and in love with my two schnoodle doggies.
This entry was posted in running, training, weekend fun, work travel. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Ft. Lauderdale & 20 Ugly Miles

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