Ran The Longest Distance I’ve Ever Ran In A Training Slow Run – 19.2 Miles
Today I ran from Carrickfergus to Belfast via the Shore Path. I ended up running 19.2 miles which brought me up to 49 for the week and 500 miles for 2012.
Onto the run itself..
It was largely uneventful until mile 12 when I happened to take a wrong turn into Sailortown and had to run in a full circle to try to get out of the complex. Some security guard yelled something about trespassing. I told him I was just trying to get out. He didn’t seem to hear or understand.
I didn’t really care.
I made my way back around to the side of Buffer McMahon’s on Garmoyle Street when I happened upon an old man who was seemingly either on some high-grade skunk or Guinnessed off his trolley.
He did not notice my footsteps behind him and as I tried to pass him he shouted “Jesus fucking Christ, you scared me half to death!”. I made no response. You cannot respond in such a situation. If you were to do so, what would you say?
“Half to death? I was trying to push you over the edge old boy!”
No. Just no.
I put all of this aside and just focused on moving and concentrated on trying to stay on my feet for as long as possible. I made it down onto the Ormeau Embankment and was running onto the Ravenhill Road when I hit a bottleneck with a young guy walking a rat dog.
Instead of having to contend with this, I ran onto the road on the double yellow lines and kept going. This seemed to annoy the rat-dog walker. “Footpath not good enough for you?”
“Ah, what?” thought I as I scrambled for breath.
I kept on going up the Ravenhill Road and thought about the last time I broke down here. It was this time last year on my 16 mile run. I got past the Spar Forecourt on the left heading up towards the roundabout and I came close to collapse.
I couldn’t let it happen this time, so I continued onwards and put everything I had into getting to the intersection of the Ormeau and Ravenhill Roads.
When I got there I was overjoyed. I’d hit 17.2 miles and the rest of the run was downhill.
I kept on going. I ran past the Errigle and Pavillion Bars without stopping for a beverage. This has to be applauded as a thirst to end all thirsts was building.
17.2 became 17.3 miles. I thought about making it to 17.5. I made it to 17.5. I thought about making it to 17.66.
This continued on for quite some time until I finally hit 18 miles. My heart soared. The next target was 18.1 miles, my previous best in a training run.
18.1 came and went. As did 18.25, 18.33, 18.4 and 18.5.
I was close to giving up. Then I had the idea of pushing for 19. I slowed down a bit, caught my breath and just tried to coast like I did in the last 3 miles of the Larne Half.
When I hit 19 I was ecstatic but I did not stop there. In fact I ran all the way to Belfast Central Station to make for a run of 19.19 miles.
I celebrated immediately by buying a pint of Magners at the station bar. I was aware of how bad I smelled. I stood far away from the till when placing my order and when I received my drink I sat in the corner as far away from everyone else as possible. It would not have been fair on anyone to have had to put up with that.
My train wasn’t for 90 minutes. Getting a taxi home was not an option due to the cost and more importantly the smell coming from me. The caustic sweat on my jogging bottoms would have welded to the fabric of the front seat of the cab and I would have been in for some serious shit from the driver.
I waited, ate more Pringles and dealt with foot cramps by stamping like Michael J. Fox to the bewilderment of the guys behind the bar.
I am now home and have just ordered a pizza. I think I’m going to have to condemn my Larne Half Marathon T-Shirt as the smell would be enough to resurrect Himmler.
And kill him again after.