3 miles today in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. I ran on the Cedar River trail in the early morning sun and fog. Really nice run. Despite temps in the 50s I managed to work up a sweat. I was supposed to run 6 today but traveling required me to alter that.

Today is a cross training day. I’ve never been very good about cross training days in the past (unless a nap counts) but today I did a couple miles hike at Wild Basin Nature Reserve with my family. Not too strenuous or long but just enough to loosen up my legs.

7 mile long run today. It’s a step-back week so nothing too challenging but next weekend is back at the higher mileage. High 60s and breezy this morning. Got out late so I had to deal with sun being higher in the sky. Good thing I was sporting my new pair of Goodr sunglasses.

3 miles on really nice 59 degree morning. First cool morning run here in Austin since early Spring. I have a little discomfort in my left hamstring so I’m going to rest up before my Saturday long run. This week is a step back week in my training plan; my long run is only 7 miles.

5 miles today, as per my training plan. It’s hard to get motivated for 5 miles at 6 AM in the dark. But this is a goal that requires completing each small step along the way. One thing that helps me get out the door at 6 AM is to set out my gear the night before. I fill up my bottle, set out my shoes, shorts, shirt, socks, hat, headlamp (it’s really dark in some spots), and headphones. I have a system for getting geared up and go through the motions and then I’m out the back door a few minutes later.

3 miles today. My first run since Saturday’s long run. The start was a little clunky as I got my legs but felt good about a mile in. I pushed the pace a little to see how it felt. Not bad!

And the Strava app on my Apple Watch crapped out at mile 8, missing two miles of running. This is probably why most runners use a dedicated watch, not a Apple Watch.

10 miles this morning for my scheduled long run. I got out much later (8am) than planned because I watched the live stream of the first group of finishers at UTMB. The temperature was higher than ideal so part of the run was a slog. Tried a new gel today: the Honey Stinger Fruit Smoothie was pretty good and sat well in my stomach.

3 mile run. Cooler weather. I’ve been listening to Springsteen’s autobiography on audiobook. Today’s run started with Clarence Clemons health deteriorating, his death, and then his nephew joining the band as a replacement. All in 3 miles. We compress history in weird ways.

Q: Why did you run with a stress fracture? Because I’m an idiot (I ignored my injury hoping it “go away”).

Q: Are you worried/scared that you won’t be able to complete the full marathon? Yes. But I was also scared I couldn’t run 6 miles, then 10, then 13.1. I did all of those. One I even did with a stress fracture in my tibia. But the worry of not finishing keeps me training!

5 miles this morning marks the longest weekday morning run I’ve done in a while (ever?). I didn’t have a full route planned out ahead of time so I ended up running my 3 mile loop and then aimlessly tacking on 2 more miles. I’m more motivated when I know where I’m going.

3 miles in a cool 70 degrees. With a slight breeze it even felt a little chilly at first. Because school is back in, I’m up earlier for runs and really enjoying the solitude of running in the dark.

A couple weeks ago I was in Seattle for a meeting and did a 4 mile run along the waterfront. It reminded me how great it feels to run in 50 degree weather.

Ordered an additional Ultimate Direction AMP handheld water bottle. Running Warehouse has them 25% off right now. For my long long runs (10+) I’m going to carry two bottles. I think I’ll carry at least one during the event. See my Gear page for more on what I use.

My second step is to decide on a gel. I’m still doing that now, testing gels that sit well in my stomach on longer runs.

My first step for nutrition planning was to start training with the course drink (what they’ll serve at race aid stations): Gatorade Endurance. This is a different drink than the Gatorade you find at the grocery store. It’s saltier and much less sweet.

I’ve always thought it was weird that runners refer to the food and drink they intake during running as “nutrition.” This is because many times, especially in ultra running there’s not much nutritious in the energy gels, drinks, and snacks.