I skipped writing an entry yesterday because Dana arrived back home from a wedding in Indiana. Sometimes there are more important things than journal entries.

Look at those tiny match sticks in that petal. I Google imaged magnolia flower and I guess it’s common for those things to pile up inside the flower like that.

Today I had an excellent run. 14 miles at 10:00 pace, even. The last 2 miles were tough because my legs felt heavy but everything else was fully charged from the rest I’m getting on this new plan. The day off Friday really lets me carry some energy over to the next week, as opposed to running Tuesday thru Sunday. For real, one day off in the middle of all that is a game changer. Sunday, I ran 14 miles as well, about 15 seconds a mile slower. That doesn’t seem much slower, but considering it was much warmer out today, it’s a positive. However, I did have the day off yesterday, so I should be fresh. Either way, it’s a good thing to be able to improve time-wise when I’m running the same distance no matter what the circumstances. That’s the reason I train.

Lately I’ve been using gels for nutrition to supplement real food and it’s working well. They seem to keep my right side from buckling up in a cramp. Today, I could feel it coming on so I ate a gel, and a few minutes later it was gone. So it is a sodium issue, but I wonder how much of that I could fix by strengthening my right side with some strength training. In the past, I’ve always done some sort of cross-training after my shorter runs and on days off, but it’s so draining to run here, I don’t have enough left after a run. So definitely on days off is when this needs to happen. I want to have a race like the 50-miler, where it is so uneventful I have to strain my brain to even remember the slightest uncomfortable moment. The later stages of a 100 mile race is where the strength training will come in very handy. I can commit to light strength training on Monday and Friday if I write it here. There, it’s written.

I think I’m starting to see that 100 miles is possible. I was thinking last night when I laid down in bed: When I get to mile 30, I’ll still have 70 miles left, and I’ve never ever run 70 miles, and when I get to mile 40, I’ll still have 60 miles left, and I’ve never ever run that far. And that’s not only daunting, that seems like downright insanity. But then I thought about a couple of things. The first – now when I run ten miles, or even fourteen like today, it’s not at all a big deal. It takes a chunk of the day, but that’s the biggest draw from my life, the actual minutes and hours it takes, not the pounding my legs take or the fluids and nutrients my body loses. The second – I remembered the last loop at Land Between the Lakes. I had turned my GPS off, so I didn’t know how many miles I had left. When I got to the aid station at the beginning of the last loop, I asked someone how far I had to go, and they told me about 14 miles. I said, “Oh, ok, no problem,” or something like that, and I kept on going. My goal is to get to that level of fitness. So I’m starting to see that it’s possible, but never will I think that it’s a given to finish.

I got an email while I was running today. It was from the United States Postal Service. It was about a job. I’m not sure I even want the job but it would be foolish, I think, to pass up the opportunity to at least talk to someone about it in an interview, in person. Also, I don’t want to pass up any opportunity to hone my interview skills. If all I end up getting out of it is some interview practice, it’ll be okay.

Tomorrow is 6 and Thursday is 8. Friday is a day off, Saturday is 24, and Sunday is 10.

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