First of all, I postponed the 9 miler for Sunday; I opted for dinner out with the hubby and some friends on Saturday night, so I ran my scheduled 9 miles tonight. It went well; here are a few notes:
1. I got friggin' thirsty. During the last 2 miles, my mouth felt like I had licked a wookie, and when I got home, I drank two bottles of water right away because I was so parched. How does everyone else deal with this? Carry a bottle of something to drink? Plant them along the route ahead of time? Have someone meet you part way with refreshment? I need to figure something out because I can't do 10 miles next week without a hydration plan.
2. I felt good for the majority of the run, but the last mile was a bit rough. My legs were getting stiff and tired. One good thing in my planning was that I actually plotted a route that was 9.2 miles, so I ran the 9, and then walked that last .2 and I think that helped me cool down a little better; still, it was hard on my legs.
3. Around mile 5, I ran through a little pocket of cool air -- an unique phenonmenon in FL -- it felt like a little piece of heaven.
4. I can now see how so many people say they enjoy training more than the marathon itself. I felt great finishing the 9 miles, a distance I'd never done before, and to think that every week I will face challenges like this, and that every week will be a new accomplishment. It's true that it's all in preparation for the ultimate goal, the marathon, but think of how many small accomplishments I will have along the way! That's very satisfying.
Lastly, I had a bowl of Kashi cereal (lots of good carbs, high in protein) with skim milk and some raspberries for a recovery meal, and I'm crossing my fingers it settles appropriately. I have to find a way around the barfing that has plagued me post-long-run in the past. Right now, I feel great.