I’m getting of the last big workouts checked off before IMWhistler (3 weeks away).  One of the run cards that my coach dealt to me a couple of years ago was the split long run.  Instead doing one loooooonnnnnggg run; he splits it into a seemingly manageable double run: 1:30 in the a.m. and 1:20 in the p.m.  Physically, I think that this workout is easier and ultimately of better quality than the straight up LOOOONNNNGGGG run; but the mental part of waiting until the afternoon to pull off the second half and “the work” is extremely challenging (for me).

Rehydration after 1st run.  I love this stuff from Harmless Harvest

Rehydration after 1st run. I love this stuff from Harmless Harvest

While running twice in one day doesn’t usually strike me as daunting; the split double long run does.  Seeing it as part of the weekly workouts causes me apprehension and trepidation (which is probably why I was so squirrelly all over social media yesterday).  I mean, isn’t it easier more time efficient just to bang out ONE long run in the cool hours a few minutes past day break and then get on with the fun of the day (plans to hit “In and Out Burger” for lunch were postponed, dammit!)?  This is how yesterday’s workout read: Saturday, July 5th  “WODs” (a little play on Crossfit lingo)

  • 1:30 run. Just run relatively EZ.  Do before 8:00 a.m.
  • 1 hour EZ bike.
  • 1:20 run. w/u 10 minutes and then 60 minutes at pace “x” c/d 10 minutes

Ummmmm……..ok.  So why can’t I just do a 2:50 run and call it even?  There is some madness (science) to the method–I found a boatload of it in “The Science of Running” and I know KP has his reasons. So here we go #ouch

How to prepare and execute the split long run

  • Stay low-key the night before.  Ditch the libations. Did I write that?  Did I really just write that?  I’ve raced half ironmans relatively well after being up late until the wee hours at dinner parties and wine tastings. Yep, even though these long runs usually fall on the middle or end of a weekend, stay boring and monk-like the night before your split long run. You will thank me for this advice during that 2nd run; especially if there is any pace work. Suck it up, you probably only have a few of these scheduled leading up to your ‘A” race.
  • Rise a couple of hours before your first run, clean out your system and eat similarly (maybe 1/2-3/4 the amount) to how you eat before a long course race; then repeat some semblance of the meal once or twice up until your second run.   Think beige, non-fiberous food. Sc$&w eating the “colors of the rainbow” and filling your body with phytonutrients. This is the time to eat applesauce, cream of rice cereal, low-fiber toast with jam, bananas, etc.
  • Make sure you have a fun mix on your IPOD–especially for any pace work.  I went with tunes by “Bubble-Gum Pop Tarts” on the first run and with “80’s Glam-Rock Bands” for the second.  No brooding, jilted female Indi ballads allowed here–not the place for them–save the reflective melancholy for a wine night.
  • Ditch the lunch time salad, sides of kale and sauerkraut and anything with garlic and onion or chia seeds.  Kick Brussel sprouts to the curb for now.  The last thing you need is for your stomach to be churning or feeling like you have to use the bathroom 5 times on the 2nd run.  I’m total fan of the many uses of a piece or two of the bark mulch that has been known to save my a$$  me on the 101, but this is not the time to test it.
  • Coke–I used this on the second run.  I had 4 ounces before the run and another 4 after the 1st 30 minutes of the pace work. The sugary crack It seemed to work its magic in my body in about, oh, 17. 6 seconds. Oh, the caffeine! Oh, the sugar! Oh, the stimulation! Oh, Oh and Oh!
  • Pick a familiar route.  I know that when I start to fatigue, I get easily irritated with crowds, speed bumps, people walking 4 pound dogs on 12 foot leashes (and the dogs that are zigzagging all over the path), red lights, smokers and unfamiliar terrain. I usually pick the terrain that is similar to the race course.
This could be construed as overkill; but I took an Epsom salt bath after first run. Just doing everything possible to insure a successful second fun as I was pretty nervous about nailing it.

This could be construed as overkill; but I took an Epsom salt bath after first run. Just doing everything possible to insure a successful second fun as I was pretty nervous about nailing it.

Food Tally leading up to and during the runs–NOTE that this was a GEL-FREE day.  I chose to do these runs on real food.  You certainly can stick more to race day nutrition-type products and do a proper race day food simulation, but I really can’t stomach that stuff in day-to-day training.  On second thought, I can actually “stomach” multiple gels and bars; I just prefer real food.

  • 4 hard boiled eggs (I eat eggs 1-2 times a week during hard training)
  • 4 pieces GF Sourdough Toast–2 with jam, 2 with avocado
  • 3 GF Waffles with Vermont Maple Syrup
  • 1 Banana
  • 1/2 Cup Applesauce
  • 2 GT Kombucha drinks
  • 16 ounces raw Coconut Water
  • 1 medium Red Potato with a boatload of Salt
  • 3 Bugles (HAHA)
  • 1/4 piece of Lara Bar (the only energy bar type thingy I had all day)
  • 1 Immodium (before 2nd run)
  • 8 ounces Coke (the cane sugar type–we are so close to Mexico that the good stuff is found at most gas stations)
  • 1 Coffee with steamed Soy Milk and Coconut Sugar
  • 1 Decaf with steamed Soy Milk and Coconut Sugar
  • Amino Acid Supplement and Race Day Boost (from First Endurance) before 2nd run.
Yup. Coke Adds Life. A lot of life. Tons.  Nailed the 2nd workout

Yup. Coke Adds Life. A lot of life. Tons. Nailed the 2nd workout

So how did the runs go?  They went well.   I’m not saying that they were easy, but they were successful.   Had a nice, well paced, fluid first run.  8 hours later (right after the Costa Rica-Netherlands game–sorry ’bout that, Gina Correll), I ran the second and held the prescribed pace during that hour.  It was hot and I planned a quick stop half way through for a large glug of coke.  I hit the fueling/eating thang spot on. Plenty of energy, I was well hydrated and not a trace of GI grumblings.   Both of runs I did in my old Hoka Bondi 2’s.  I have a couple of new pairs of running shoes, but I know better than to try out a long run day in them.  The anxiety that I felt before the split long run is gone.   The takeaway here is that if you are anxious about a scheduled workout, set yourself up as well as you can so that the execution doesn’t fall short.  It will pay off in confidence.

A little post-workout pizza topped with pile of veggies, including shaved Brussel Sprouts and Roasted Garlic. Would have been disasterous earlier in the day

A little post-workout pizza topped with pile of veggies, including shaved Brussel Sprouts and Roasted Garlic (which would have been disasterous earlier in the day).  Yeah, that’s a glass of wine in the background

Today is an EZ recovery day.  Checking out the Scandinave website for some R and R post race

Have a great day everyone

-LM