Previous marathon training long runs:


Today, I woke up with one goal in mind:  bang out 13.1 miles for marathon training.  Unfortunately, when I dragged my booty out of bed and looked outside, it was absolutely monsooning.  I checked, which assured me the rain would stop soon, so I decided to hold off a bit.




Pretty standard pre-long run fare:  peanut butter and 1/2 a banana on toast.  Everyone has a different pre-run meal that works for them, and I absolutely cannot go wrong with this combo.


Once the rain stopped around 8 AM, I headed out.


One major mistake that I think I’ve been making during training is going out TOO FAST.  When my music is bumpin’ and I’m feeling good about the distance, I tend to leave with house with a bang, averaging 9:30/miles.  But truthfully, that is way too fast for me for long runs.  I read the other day on Runner’s World that your long runs should probably be 30 seconds to 1:30 slower than your anticipated race pace.  Slower long runs = more time on your feet.


I don’t want to set a “goal” for my upcoming marathon (I think it creates unnecessary pressure for a distance that is already pressure enough… if I finish smiling, I’ll be thrilled), but it wouldn’t hurt to run 10:30.   So today I tried to maintain a 10:30 to 11:30/mile with walking breaks, which I took about once a mile.


Around Mile 5, I stopped by my house to refill my water bottle and eat some small oranges.


Ugh – the acidity did NOT sit well in my stomach.  I think I can handle an orange slice or two, but not two whole pieces of fruit.


I also changed my sports bra and shirt because I was absolutely dripping wet with humidity and beginning to chafe all over the place (ah, chafing… one aspect of marathon training that I did NOT miss – I’ve tried everything and nothing works for me). 


The last few minutes were pretty mentally and physically rough.  I started to play little games like, “Just run to that lamp post” or “Envision you’re crossing a finish line!” 


I also blasted my “power song” (The Killer’s ‘All The Things That I’ve Done’), which always reminds me of my exhilarating but terrifying Olympic triathlon (recap) because I used the song in my video recap of the event:


All I could think was, “If I can get through that triathlon from hell, I can get through this silly training run!”


And then… suddenly, I was done!


  • Distance: 13.1 miles
  • Duration: 2:20 (in comparison, I can run a Half Marathon race is 1:58)
  • Mile 1: 10:12
  • Mile 2: 9:53
  • Mile 3: 10:52
  • Mile 4: 10:48
  • Mile 5: 10:20
  • Mile 6: 10:24
  • Mile 7: 11:05
  • Mile 8: 11:25
  • Mile 9: 11:04
  • Mile 10: 10:58
  • Mile 11: 11:05
  • Mile 12: 11:29
  • Mile 13: 10:18
  • Mile 13 – 13.1: 56 seconds; 9:38 pace


Came home and inhaled a Green Monster:


In the mix: 1 cup almond breeze, 1/2 a banana, 15 cherries, Nesquik, 2 tablespoons brown rice protein powder, and 2 cups of raw spinach.


And then a little later, I made a great big roasted veggie salad:


In the mix: 1 cup quinoa, roasted Brussel sprouts, kidney beans, butternut squash, and feta cheese.  ‘Twas delish!


I actually ate this delicious dinner while talking on Skype to my old high school friend, Ali!  We fell out of touch but are re-connecting electronically. So fun!


And then I pulled a great big disappearing act on you because I had to go SELL MY CAR!  Which was quite the process, but I’m pleased with the outcome.  Our decision to sell our car was based in part on your responses to this post, so I really appreciate your advice!


Ate an AllieBar at the mechanics!


And then came home and had 1/2 cup oatmeal, Greek yogurt, blueberries, and chia seeds.  I am quite hangry after running all that distance!


I have quite the hot date planned for tonight!  Very excited.


What mind games do you play during long and hard workouts?  Do you recall past triumphs?  Tell me about it, I love to hear about your successes!!



  • Kristy @ August 19, 2010, 6:37 pm

    Awesome job! I have a 12 miler coming up this weekend, and I always make sure to start super slowly. When I start slow, I can usually push it in to a higher gear the last few miles, which I think makes me stronger. 🙂 And all of your post-run re-fueling meals/snacks looked so healthy and tasty. Yum! Yea, green monsters!

  • Maria August 19, 2010, 6:54 pm

    I always just tell my self that it will be over (eventually) because everything has an end! I remind myself that I have finished many tough runs and this one is no different. I pump the music up and keep running!! Feels so great when I finish.

  • Bethany @ More Fruit Please August 19, 2010, 6:59 pm

    Congrats on finishing a half and selling your car! Quite a productive day for you!

  • Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman August 19, 2010, 7:01 pm

    I find not paying attention to things around me helps me get in a groove during a workout. So I might concentrate on work and think it through while working out. I tend to work harder that way. On the upside, I get some of my best story ideas that way.

  • Sarena (The Non Dairy Queen) August 19, 2010, 7:04 pm

    With any work out, if I am having a hard time getting through it, I think about other things. It makes the time seem to go quicker. I also set little goals for myself to accomplish and then once I reach those…I go to another goal. Great job on the run today! I am so ready for fall…the humidity does not help at all. I had a dairy free version of your meal tonight! I love quinoa with veggies! I hope you have a great night.

  • Dorry August 19, 2010, 7:04 pm

    Great run! Lately, when I’m out running, I think about our upcoming wedding/honeymoon trip through Europe…I imagine all that we’ll do and see (and what clothes/shoes I should pack!)and get lost in the excitement! Before I know it, the run is over. 🙂

  • Allie (Live Laugh Eat) August 19, 2010, 7:04 pm

    It’s encouraging to see someone train for a marathon running a slower pace. I run pretty slow (read: I’m SHORT) and while I am okay with my speed, it’s hard not to at least want to run a little faster when reading blogs! You show that it’s better to run slower and finish the distance than faster and burn out.

  • Heather (Heather's Dish) August 19, 2010, 7:06 pm

    i always do math in my head about how far i have to go, how far i’ve gone, etc. i’m such a dork, it’s true 🙂

  • Katie August 19, 2010, 7:07 pm

    I have to keep telling myself that my thoughts will make or break my workout and to keep my thoughts positive or the run will be disastrous.
    Congrats on your half marathon ;-)!

  • suki August 19, 2010, 7:08 pm

    The Green Monster in the glass looks like a nice, dark, tasty beer… 😛 I used to swim on a team, which I didn’t enjoy all too much because I was required to go by my parents, but when I had to just keep swimming, I’d play mind games by either singing a song in my head or listing off things in my head, so that the time would go by quicker while I swam slowly.

  • Evan Thomas August 19, 2010, 7:12 pm

    Sometimes I’ll write an imaginary book.
    If I’m in a rich neighborhood, I’ll go “house shopping”
    I plan what I’d cook if I cooked for Paula Deen
    I start yelling “Alejandro, Alejandro!” when no one’s around

  • Samantha August 19, 2010, 7:14 pm

    That’s a great long run! I too, always struggled with slowing down for my long runs when distance running. Heck, I had that problem today on a 4 miler going out too fast! Our weather is a lot like yours in NC, except the hot tends to feel hotter because we’re closer to the equator, and we get no fall/winter here. Ha ha! Mind games are great. When we lived in CT my long run spots were so beautiful that I just focused on nature.

    Love that song by the way, I first heard it on your Wildman Tri video and have had it in regular rotation ever since!

  • Sarah @ Sarah's Shaping Up August 19, 2010, 7:15 pm

    During long runs when I’m getting tired, I’ll tell myself that if I can come back from tearing my ACL, I can run just a little while longer. I think about how I wasn’t able to run for almost 5 months and that gets me going! I also blast my power song “List of Demands” by Saul Williams. 🙂

  • Jen @ Jen is Green August 19, 2010, 7:18 pm

    great job on getting 13.1 miles in! I can’t imagine running a marathon, but in October i’ll be running my first half. getting excited for that! 😉

  • Daniel August 19, 2010, 7:18 pm

    I’ve never ran a half-marathon or anything of that nature, but a while back I pulled off 5 miles which started off as a typical 3-mile morning work out. I find that once I get to the end of my workouts that I have more energy and want to keep going but it’s hard to workout for the duration I “set” for myself.

    I typically have an mp3 player going and I just keep thinking about how good I’ll feel when I’m done and can shower, and when I good song comes on I get an extra boost.

  • Jasmine @ Eat Move Write August 19, 2010, 7:19 pm

    Great job! OMG I was playing little mind games with myself during my run today too. My blog post today is all about EXACTLY that. Rarely, do I say this kind of thing, as it annoys ME, but you SHOULD read my blog post about 5 Tips on Running by a Non-Runner. You will appreciate it, I think. xo

  • Jessica August 19, 2010, 7:20 pm

    That’s my favorite power-running song too!!!

  • Kacy August 19, 2010, 7:31 pm

    Ugh, citrus doesn’t settle well with me when running either. I absolutely love running to The Killers.

    Good job getting through the run – you persevered!!

  • Michelle (The Runner's Plate) August 19, 2010, 7:31 pm

    If I need some extra motivation, I think about all the pain I was in during my marathon and that’s usually enough to quit my whining.

  • Camille August 19, 2010, 7:36 pm

    Great run!

  • Whitney August 19, 2010, 7:43 pm

    I kind of do the same thing, with the “run to that lampost” trick. I also promise myself something afterwards. Like on the weekends, I’ll motivate myself with an iced coffee afterwards. It’s the little things 🙂

  • Kate August 19, 2010, 7:54 pm

    Thank you thank you THANK you for the comment on slower long run paces and time on feet! I trained for my first marathon with a slow friend, meaning lots of my runs were 3:00+, but only one 20-miler, and I was in much better shape on race day than my “my speed” running friends. The endurance made all the difference. (I ran a 4:04 on a super hilly course, and did most of those long runs at maybe 11:00/mile pace?)
    I think about past training and racing triumphs, and try to rank my current painful experience against the other hardest things I’ve done (basically, a long list of steep hills I’ve ridden my bike up….) I also think of future racing triumphs- so I’ll visualize myself coming in sub-6 in a half IM while I struggle through the last miles. Lastly, I daydream. Right now, it’s fantasizing about future babies 

    • caitlin August 20, 2010, 10:04 am

      Youre welcome 🙂 Slow runs rule.

  • Nancy @ The Wife of a Dairyman August 19, 2010, 7:58 pm

    You are so motivated! So Great! Hot date? Can’t wait to hear…..sounds like it’ll be fun:)

  • holly @ couchpotatoathlete August 19, 2010, 8:03 pm

    Awesome run — I have a hard time running in this heat, I drip with sweat and the run (no matter how long or short) takes FOREVER.

    For chafing, the only thing that works for me is vaseline. I rub a little under my bra straps/armpits and that helps me alot. I also have a Champion sports bra that does not chafe –this was one of the best purchases ever! And wicking material tanks are the best. I hope you get it figured out, chafing sucks!

    Way to go selling that car! I wish J and I were a one car family, but our jobs are in completely different directions and we both need to be able to “travel” while at work, so we need 2 cars.

  • Becky August 19, 2010, 8:08 pm

    Great run! It gets tough for me on a couple of the big hills that I run on. When I hit those spots, I’m always saying “Just get to that pole, the mailbox, that stop sign.” It works for me, too. My marathon goal is to finish smiling. It’s reasonable when training for such a long distance.

  • Michelle @ Give Me the Almond Butter August 19, 2010, 8:14 pm

    I love that video. It’s so inspirational. I also play games with myself while I run like making it to a certain tree or something.

  • Meghan@traveleatlove August 19, 2010, 8:15 pm

    When I am running long runs, especially 18 + I actually plan out topics to think about like upcoming social events or restaurants I will try or past vacations and holidays or even fun college memories. Thinking happy, positive thoughts and being set up to do so always makes me relax and run more efficiently while having some fun.

  • Lauren August 19, 2010, 8:18 pm

    I always run my long runs in the morning and envision the big bowl of oatmeal that I will have when I get done.
    Oh and I sing. Yep, I always sing. It helps me so much!

  • ashleigh August 19, 2010, 8:21 pm

    Congrats on plowing through the not to great training run, you rock!

    Running for me is always a mind game! I always want to give up, but I usually tell myself that I am positive I can do it and just believe in myself! 🙂

    Sometimes I think about other bloggers, such as you, who inspire me, and I’m like well they started where I am and now run marathons, so I surely can do a 2 mile run! In this case comparing myself to others really pushes me and is beneficial!

  • Crystal August 19, 2010, 8:24 pm

    I love that you put Nesquik in your monster! I have thought about doing that before and have even thought about using Nesquik in my oatmeal. It’s just so good!

    When I think about stopping during a run, I keep telling myself, “Just make it to the next street then I can start walking,” this usually ends up buying me another mile (though the most I can run is just over 2 miles right now). It works, though!

  • Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine August 19, 2010, 8:31 pm

    Great job on the half run! I’ve never thought of running my long runs slower to give myself more time running…it definitely makes sense though. I need to incorporate that when I start training for my next half!

  • Lana August 19, 2010, 8:32 pm

    Congrats on the long run!!! I definitely plan mind games with my self like you did. I tell myself, “Just get up the hill, run to the next mail box and run fast past that barking dog!!!” lol

  • Danielle August 19, 2010, 8:37 pm

    I need to start putting cherries in my green monsters – yours always look sooooo good!

    When my runs get tough, I tell myself how “lucky” i am to be running – like, wow, I am so lucky I get 2 hours today to run – so many people don’t have this free time! or, wow, I am so lucky that I am a runner and I can run 10 miles without stoping and then have extra dessert tonight! – the positive thoughts really help me pull through!

  • Tina August 19, 2010, 8:40 pm

    I always break things down into smaller steps. Like 1 more minute or only 3 more reps 3 times instead of 9 more. Mind games work. It’s funny that we KNOW we’re doing them but they still trick us in a way.

    Glad you survived the run and it went well overall. That really stinks on the chafing though. I would hate dealing with that.

  • Lee August 19, 2010, 8:41 pm

    My goal this year was to run a 10K PR which I did in March. Every time running gets tough, I remind myself that the toughness was how I achieved the PR.

  • Sarah for Real August 19, 2010, 8:45 pm


    I hope that doesn’t end up in your spam filter…

  • Dee August 19, 2010, 8:51 pm

    You go girl! You’re such an inspiration! 🙂

    ps. never thought to put nesquik in green monsters… what a yummy idea!

  • Courtney August 19, 2010, 9:02 pm

    I sing… not out loud, I just mouth the words to an upbeat song. This takes my mind off the pain but still keeps me focused. 🙂

  • Sarah (this is it) August 19, 2010, 9:05 pm

    I look for cats and animals sometimes when I am running long runs. Or, I look for houses for sale and plan out my dream house.

  • Heather August 19, 2010, 9:09 pm

    good job! your training run is faster than my half marathon PR!

  • Kristine August 19, 2010, 9:12 pm

    I’ve been chafing in one area from my sports bra. I put a big band aid over it when I run and that has been working great. If you’re chafing in multiple places I guess that wouldn’t really be an option though.

    • caitlin August 20, 2010, 10:06 am

      I have used athletic tape and it works well! 🙂 but i am all out.

      • Kristine August 20, 2010, 4:32 pm

        Good idea! Makes more sense than band-aids. lol

  • Christina August 19, 2010, 9:14 pm

    Good for you- for both the car and the run! You might want to pick up a cheap bike from craigslist- something without shocks and with a sloping top tube. Something that would be easy for either of you to hop on to run an errand- unless you really set up a road bike right, running errands on those is too much hassle!

  • Steph August 19, 2010, 9:18 pm

    I am not a consistent runner. Right now I do the whole walk run thing, and I am only up to 2.5 miles. I am happy with that for now, because for most of my life I never exercised.
    I do what you do, which is.. I’ll start running and I’ll tell myself “Okay.. make it to that tree.. just to the tree.. you can do it!” and then I’ll either take a walking break, or if I am feeling good I’ll keep running to another goal.
    Also – I just bought some ingredients for Green Monsters.. haven’t made one in a while and I miss those greens!

  • scargosun August 19, 2010, 9:19 pm

    My phrases:
    “You can do anything for minutes”
    “Just run to the stop sign you can stop then if you want and walk the rest.” Then, I would say, “See you are ok, keep going.”
    Since I exercise before I go to the office, I try to plan out what I am going to wear.

  • August 19, 2010, 9:22 pm

    just posted the shout out to ur First Magazine Interview!! check it out here girl:


  • Caitlin @ Right Foot Forward August 19, 2010, 9:28 pm

    Congrats on the long run! Interesting fact from RW magazine. I play a similar mind game and envision myself crossing the finish line.

  • Diana @ frontyardfoodie August 19, 2010, 9:28 pm

    Awesome run! IT is probably a good idea to take long runs slower. I never really thought about it but it’s true. So many bloggers and friends of mine are doing marathon training and I’m so jealous! I live vicariously through them but at nine months pregnant it just ain’t a good time for me. haha

  • Allie August 19, 2010, 9:32 pm

    i always think about my long run in segments. i never ever think about a 15 miler; i think about the first four miles, then when those are done, i think about the next four, and then i only have 6 left, and that’s almost nothing…the mental game of breaking it up totally helps me. at the very end of the run, i just think about what i am going to eat and drink when i am done and that gets me there faster!

  • Krystina August 19, 2010, 9:32 pm

    Your motivation is inspiring.

    • caitlin August 20, 2010, 10:06 am


  • Ashley @ Nourishing the Soul August 19, 2010, 9:32 pm

    All These Things That I’ve Done is my go-to power song too!!!! Sole sisters 😉

  • Chelsey August 19, 2010, 9:34 pm

    I totally play mind games on my long runs. I know the routes because I map them out, so when I take a turn I say, “oh! you only have x amount of miles on this road!” It helps to make it seem like no big deal.

  • eatmovelove August 19, 2010, 9:34 pm

    Do you mix that yogurt mess together or just eat it separately? 😉

    Great run. That’s about 13.1 more than me…:(..I will not cry, will not ruminate…nope.

    And is it just my computer? – every time I come here, I get these weird pop-up ads come up???

    • caitlin August 19, 2010, 9:40 pm

      Grrr I don’t know what that is about! What ad is it for?

      • eatmovelove August 19, 2010, 10:08 pm

        LOL – I’m not sure, it didn’t happen this time!! …at least it’s not, like an ad for porn or something…at least I don’t think ! :0


    • caitlin August 20, 2010, 10:07 am

      oh and yes i mix up my yogurt mess!

  • mindy @ just a one girl revolution. August 19, 2010, 9:35 pm

    That is one of my all time favorite songs!

  • Ellen@FirednFabulous August 19, 2010, 9:40 pm

    Green monsters…brussel sprouts…just can’t do ’em! Good for you 🙂 I don’t really play mind games when I’m working out, but whenever I feel like slacking, I always remember how good I’ll feel after if I push myself a little harder!

  • Victoria August 19, 2010, 9:43 pm

    When I’m doing a longer run and having a hard time, I always tell myself “just 2 minutes more” or “just up to that intersection” and by the time I get to my designated point, I find another short distance to get to. Makes it seem more manageable. Today’s run was hard for me, but I had my husband with me, and I actually had to say to him: “please tell me I can do this!”

  • Stacey August 19, 2010, 9:47 pm

    Sometimes when I’m doing the 3rd level of Shred, I try to psych myself out by saying “This last only 20 minutes! That’s not long at all!”
    Or when I go on long runs, my mind just sort of wanders and I forget that I’m running at all..but during short, hard runs I tell myself “Once you get done with this, you can go home and watch trashy TV/drink a diet soda/paint your toenails” 😀
    Have fun on your hot date!

  • Kristen August 19, 2010, 9:52 pm

    I am training for the Chicago Marathon in October, so I am enjoying reading about your long runs! I will be running 18 on Saturday, AH! This past weekend, I mentally “tricked” myself by breaking up my run into more manageable sections. I did 8 miles (an out + back), stopped for some fuel, then did 2 miles, and then met up with my training partner for 7 more. It totally helped! (And having a running buddy helps too!) Wish I lived in Charlotte b/c I know a lot of you bloggers are training for marathons, and I could use more running buddies!

    • caitlin August 20, 2010, 10:07 am

      Good luck on Chicago!

  • Heather August 19, 2010, 9:56 pm

    Congrats on powering through it! I don’t really have any specific mantra — I do tell myself that “pain is temporary” thanks to you and the blog. I mostly just remind myself that spending 20-40 minutes on myself is totally worth it, and maybe not fun, but essential for my mental health.

    Sidenote: I am buying that exact same laptop soon! Do you love it?

  • sarah k. @ the pajama chef August 19, 2010, 10:00 pm

    i do math during long runs to keep my mind focused on something (not how tired i am) and also focused on my goal (how much i have left, time goals for the run/upcoming race. it’s weird but it works for me. 🙂

  • Wei-Wei August 19, 2010, 10:04 pm

    Congratulations! Awesome, awesome run. I was running to get my time in zone for PE class today (ughhhhh) I felt tired about five minutes in at 5.6 mph. Which is half a mile. I really need to start training -_______-

  • Julie @ pickley pear August 19, 2010, 10:18 pm

    Great run! You kept a great pace. I must listen to good music to keep me going. Nice views help too!

  • Jean@RoastedRootsPumpkinSpice August 19, 2010, 10:26 pm

    Wow, I can’t even imagine running that long of a distance. Great job!

    I don’t run much but when I used to, I would play mind games by avoiding looking at the distance and the time, and try to keep my mind occupied with something else. Music always helps too!

  • Megan (Braise The Roof) August 19, 2010, 10:29 pm

    I totally play mind games with myself (especially if I’m on a treadmill- way harder because there aren’t physical markers to aim for) like imagining myself crossing a finish line or running on a pretty beach into the arms of a hunky, hunky man…what? Doesn’t anyone else do that?? 😉

  • Cati @ crave and create August 19, 2010, 10:52 pm

    I listen to Muse. There is absolutely nothing that gets me fired up like their music. 🙂 Butterflies and Hurricanes is my “anthem.”

    I also window-gawk, which is best at night when people have their lights on. Is that too weird?! I live in a beautiful area of town, and it’s so fun to see how people decorate their houses!

    • caitlin August 20, 2010, 10:08 am

      Omg my neighbors have the weirdest painting in their living room. It’s super morbid and weird.

  • Danielle August 19, 2010, 10:54 pm

    What a great montage! Such a great song for it, almost made me shed a tear when you crossed the finish line! I love moments where people overcome something and accomplish so much!

    My mind games are to listen to some really good music, and picture myself as some super athlete

  • Kath August 19, 2010, 10:57 pm

    I can’t believe how quickly you’ve increased your mileage – hope I can again when life settles

  • Lisa (bakebikeblog) August 19, 2010, 11:43 pm

    Awesome job on the run!!! Particularly in the humidity!! Have fun tonight!

  • Mary & Christina August 19, 2010, 11:48 pm

    That is great that you focused on slowing down today. We recently wrote a post about the pace of your long run…

    We used to run our long runs AS FAST AS WE COULD. huge mistake. When you’re going long….take it slow!

  • Amber K August 19, 2010, 11:54 pm

    I am constantly playing mind games like those. Mostly when doing outside workouts. Just to that crack in the sidewalk, just until that light, etc.

  • Amber from Girl with the Red Hair August 20, 2010, 12:20 am

    I love long runs, mostly. I just really like building my mileage every week and the huge challenge it is! I spend all week psyching myself up for them haha!

  • Laura August 20, 2010, 12:35 am

    Try chamois butter for the chaffing.

  • Lisa August 20, 2010, 12:37 am

    Congrats on selling the car – I’m sure you’ll be happy with that decision.

    Did you eat anything on the run besides the oranges (and the pre-run fuel)? If not, I think you need to eat more. Long distances is always a mental challenge but sometimes it’s not just in our heads!

    • caitlin August 20, 2010, 10:09 am

      no – remember that i am a smaller girl (i’m really short). a 600 cal breakfast + 100 cals on my run is more than enough, provided i get that protein smoothie in my belly right away!

  • Chelsea at Striking Balance August 20, 2010, 1:27 am

    Your roasted veggie lunch looks so good! It is making me hungry. And congrats on selling the car! Very exciting!

    I am still semi-recovering from a hip surgery a few months ago, so I haven`t been able to do many long and hard workouts. However, the other day I did a hard 3.5 mile run (which right now is long and hard for me!), and just kept reminding myself how good I was doing and how strong my hip was. I was proud of myself for strengthening it back up to be able to carry me for any run at all, and that gave me the extra push to finish!

  • Mac August 20, 2010, 1:30 am

    I have a major pacing problem too! I have never been very good at pacing myself, so it’s my goal to learn how to keep a steady pace as well as find out what pace is good for me (for long runs). I think my new Garmin will help a lot with this.

  • Maureen @ Notes on a Visual Life August 20, 2010, 1:31 am

    Oh, I definitely play the “Just to that road sign and then we’ll take a quick break” game with myself. But I’ve found that my biggest successes come from the old “visual lock on until overtaken” method. Just focusing on the tree half a mile down and nothing else helps me to zone out and I usually pass the marker and keep on going.

  • Nicole - yuppie yogini August 20, 2010, 1:54 am

    You say you tried everything for the chaffing….did you try Body Glide? They sell it at Run For Your Life. Good job on 13.1! You are really bangin out those miles!

    • caitlin August 20, 2010, 10:12 am

      Tried it – doesnt work for me 🙁

  • kelly August 20, 2010, 2:53 am

    ahhh you’ve just reminded me of that song, I love The Killers and I’m sick of my song list and wanted something new and this ones perfect! and good idea with the nesquik in the smoothie, I’ll have to try that out

    ps. i have your book and i’m very excited to read it

  • Freya (Brit Chick Runs) August 20, 2010, 3:05 am

    YAAY congrats on the run!! Long ones are so so tough..My biggest past triumph was my last half mary – I felt AWFUL at the end, but I pushed through it cos I kept saying ‘just 1mile left’ etc etc, and it worked. Toughest race ever though!

  • Neen@Broad Bean to Runner Bean August 20, 2010, 4:27 am

    awesome run! I’m impressed!! and well done for selling the car!

  • Stacey @ The Habit of Healthy August 20, 2010, 5:19 am

    Woo-hoo well done with the run!! Seems like a few bloggers are training for marathons lately.

    I use the same tricks as you when it comes to running; just to the next lampost, just one more minute, finish this mile and you can have some ice cream. Yeah, that last one may not be too healthy but it gets me through!!

  • Theresa @ActiveEggplant August 20, 2010, 6:39 am

    I have a chafing problem as well! I did just find Enell sports bras though and it seems to be helping! Steve in a Speedo ( blogged about them (his wife, a marathoner & triathlete, uses them). They’re expensive (about $70 each with shipping) but every time I wear mine I get NO CHAFING! You might want to try one out. It took some getting used to because it’s so snug, but it made SUCH a difference for me! Once I can save the arm & a leg for another one I will definitely buy it – and will NEVER go back to “regular” sports bras again. They even make custom sizes!

    • Theresa @ActiveEggplant August 20, 2010, 6:50 am

      p.s. I should warn you – Enell bras are NOT cute or girly or fashionable by any means…but it’s worth the sacrifice so far if you ask me 🙂

    • Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday August 20, 2010, 8:44 am

      Hey, thanks for the tip!

  • Tracy August 20, 2010, 7:50 am

    Sounds like you had a great 13.1 miler… Best of luck with the rest of your training! Random curiosity… I ask everyone with a Garmin this… Do you set your pace on it or just go with the flow?

    • caitlin August 20, 2010, 10:13 am

      i just look down and kind of keep my pace in mind.

  • Therese August 20, 2010, 8:51 am

    I know you said you tried everything, but Moving Comfort sports bras have very specific sizing. I’ve been happy with mine!

  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin August 20, 2010, 8:57 am

    Good job on the run! 🙂 I used to get really discouraged when I couldn’t do a long run at a fast pace, but now I’ve just accepted that I need to go slower. It makes the run SO much more enjoyable.

  • Leanne @ Radiant, Balanced & Fit August 20, 2010, 9:03 am

    Great job on the run Caitlin!

    On the days where my mind doesn’t feel like running I focus on minute intervals if I’m on the treadmill… I’ll sometimes even take it 30 seconds at a time, and before I know it… I’ve done 20-30 minutes! If I’m outside I do the same thing as you… I think “run to the corner” and then once I get to the corner I think “can we make it to the fire hydrant” and so on… It totally works! 🙂 !!

  • Jess @JessCantCook August 20, 2010, 9:45 am

    I try to remind myself how good I’m going to feel after the run and a nice shower…if that doesn’t work I pretend I’m about to cross the finish line and all my friends & family are waiting and do that over and over until I get to the end!

  • Rob Runs (Slowly) August 20, 2010, 9:54 am

    I’m training for my first marathon with the local running club, luckily being with a group of people pretty much negates the need for mind games. We do all our runs as LSD pace, almost two minutes slower than our 10k paces. And some days even that’s quite a struggle. As much as I might not want to be out there (getting completely poured on during a 20 mile run) I can’t let the group down! My only trick has been “well, I have to get back to the car somehow, I can do it the slow way or the slower way.”

  • Brittney August 20, 2010, 9:57 am

    Nice job on the run Caitlin! I also love that Killers’ song and it’s on my running mix too!

  • Maren August 20, 2010, 10:27 am

    Great job girl! I always use music to boost myself! I am loving Enrique – I like it and always Black Eyed Peas – Rock Your Body. These songs do make me want to start dancing instead of running..I wonder what kinds of looks I’d get? By the way, I just read your article in my Glamour mag last night! I got soooo excited (even though I already knew it was in there) and squealed while telling my boyfriend, “I read her blog, I read her blog!!! Hope you have a great day!

  • jenna August 20, 2010, 10:32 am

    🙂 I can’t even imagine running 13 miles!! You make me want to start running!

    your roasted veggie/quinoa salad looks so nourishing! mmm… love that combo

  • Heather August 20, 2010, 11:03 am

    Oh my gosh! “The Killers” song is my emergency, I’m about to crash, pick-me-up song too.

    “I got soul but I’m not a soldier”.

    Except I nearly die while trying 3 miles ;-).

  • Erica August 20, 2010, 11:34 am

    Great run! You will be rockin that marathon before you know it!

    I use my health as my motivation on a daily basis, but especially for running. Exercise is so important when it comes to recurrence of breast cancer, so when I feel my energy start to wain I picture myself beating cancer with every single step. I put myself back in the infusion center, hooked up to chemo, and remembering how hard it was on my body, YET I AM STRONGER. I remember driving 3 hrs one way every single day for 6 weeks for radiation and how hard it was, but that I did it…and did it still running! So I think that if I can do THAT, then I can surely do a few more miles. Breast cancer will NOT get the chance to defeat me again!

    • Michelle August 20, 2010, 12:32 pm

      WOW. I am going to be thinking of YOU on my next run~ you’re incredible!! 🙂

      • caitlin August 20, 2010, 1:25 pm

        Yea – you rule, Erica!

  • Lisa August 20, 2010, 12:28 pm

    After Hood to Coast next week I need to start training for my Half. I am totally freaked out about the concept! 🙂

  • Rachel August 20, 2010, 12:43 pm

    I have the play the same mind games even though I’m running way less mileage than that (1-3 miles per session, currently).

  • Molly August 20, 2010, 1:02 pm

    Hi caitlin, when you stop do you keep the clock running and factor in your pace or stop it?

    • caitlin August 20, 2010, 1:25 pm

      I stopped for that sports bra change 🙂 Usually I let it run for walking breaks etc

  • Michelle August 20, 2010, 2:33 pm

    Caitlin, I <3 you!

    I am slow bc A) I have short legs and B) I am in week 7 of C25K so I am still learning. 🙂

    My inspirational mantras are:
    – "I am a runner." (courtesy of
    – "Dude, you *totally* have this."
    – "I am powerful beyond all measure." and
    – "It is my light, not my darkness, that most frightens me." (both Marianne Williamson)
    – "Hail Mary, full of grace; the Lord is with me. Please save me from certain asphyxiation during this journey; should I turn blue, please let a kind stranger save me from this foolishness."

    My power song is "Start Wearing Purple" by Gogol Bordello – I cannot help but be joyous when I hear/sing this song!

    • Michelle August 20, 2010, 3:17 pm

      PS: I am running my very first 5k at the end of the month so sometimes, if the day’s run is really tough, I’ll imagine friends and family at the 5k finish line cheering me on to keep me going (even though the only person I’ll know is my bf). 🙂

    • caitlin August 20, 2010, 6:06 pm

      hahah i like your hail mary one!! good luck on your 5k!

  • Brittany August 20, 2010, 2:56 pm

    If I am completely dreading a run, I choose an out-and-back route. I might not be feeling like running a 22-miler, but I know I can make it 11 with ease, and once I’m 11 miles from home, I have no choice but to make the trek back, and I’d rather not have it take all day. Sometimes I’ll do my super-long runs before work in the morning for that very reason – extra pressure to get the run done. I also remember my marathon and half marathon PR’s and tell myself, if you can run THAT far THAT fast, you can definitely finish this run!

  • Monica August 20, 2010, 3:07 pm

    That Killers song is great for really firing things up. I have a spin instructor that uses that song last with crazy sprints and it feels amazing.

    I have a ridiculous song for running that fires me up and works like a charm every time. I love it. Don’t judge my goonie-ness and I will share. 😉 What can I say, I love Rocky training montages!

  • Ashley August 20, 2010, 4:41 pm

    Great run!!

    What do you do with the other half of the banana? Eat it? Give it to your husband? Save it for later?

    • caitlin August 20, 2010, 6:07 pm

      1/2 on the sammie, 1/2 in the smoothie!

  • Kim August 20, 2010, 5:38 pm

    Congrats on becoming a one-car family! My husband and I sold our only car one year ago, and it’s been (while at times frustrating) probably one of the best decisions we’ve made. Hope you enjoy the freedom of reducing your fleet 🙂

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