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Boston Marathon Practice Long Run

First thing…. I am proud of myself for getting out the door and getting in a much needed long run this morning. I almost registered for a Charlie Alewine race in Long Beach just to ensure I would get it done…. but yesterday, the though of getting up that early just was not appealing…. So I decided on joining the Runner’s Lane crew for their Saturday morning long run instead. I did not click “going” on facebook, though, so I allowed myself that chance to back out… but I didn’t…. yeah! The first step is always the hardest….

So, the Runner’s Lane group met at 7. There were only 5 of us. Each announced their planned distance – which ranged from 8 to 16. So it isn’t really a group run, for long, as everyone starts out together but quickly separates. The run starts by leaving the store, going behind the mall on 15th and then west on Bulldog Lane (P-8). Then it goes north on 30th to Marie Kerr. At this point each individual chooses to remain on 30th or head West on Rancho Vista.

I didn’t really care for either option…. If you continue on 30th you are heading west – downhill and downwind – too many miles of this would lead to a long dragging return run. If you turn onto Rancho Vista you have rolling uphill for 2.5 miles until you pass Hillview – then a BIG downhill which you’d have to climb….

So, I did both… First I continued on 30th til N8, just north of the Golf Course, and then reversed back to Rancho Vista. Then I headed west on Rancho Vista. Approaching Towncenter I began what I call Rancho Vista’s Newton Hills. I noted a few years ago that you could replicate the famous Newton Hills of the Boston Marathon as you run through the Rancho Vista neighborhood area. Hill 1 is the uphill on Rancho Vista Blvd going up to Towncenter. You make a right and go down Towncenter, then right on Bolz Ranch. Next you make a left on Homeridge – as you run UP Homeridge returning to RV Blvd you get hill #2. At the top of Homeridge you continue west on RV Blvd then right and down Cricket then left on Bolz Ranch again. Hill #3 is up Peonza Lane in front of my school – Hillview, continuing a bit more west on RV Blvd. You then take the side streets behind Hillview to return to Bolz Ranch one last time. A left onto N8 takes you into the steepest and longest of the hills – my version of Boston’s Heartbreak Hill.

As I finished Heartbreak… er N8, I was at mile 11 – with 5 remaining of my planned 16. As you crest Heartbreak Hill in Boston you are at mile 21 with 5 remaining to get you to the finish line. The return from N8 to Runner’s Lane is mostly all downhill as is the last 5 of the Boston Marathon.

So, I practiced the LAST 16 of the Boston Marathon. As I began the run my legs were already quite tired… yesterday I did a very hilly 19 mile Elliptigo ride. So today’s run was indeed really like the last 16 of the marathon… they felt like it…

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