The Loneliness Of The Long, Long Run

On July 21, 2008, in Uncategorized, by Meghan

Yesterday, it was just me and many miles of forest service roads, county roads, and doubletrack trail.

Oh, and a bunch of nuun, some water, a bit of Hammer’s Perpetuem, a lot of Powergel, a few peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and one bag of Sharkies.

Wait, and my iPod with its hours of music. Singers like Willie Nelson, The Be Good Tanyas, Lyle Lovett, Lucinda Williams, Wilco, The Beetles, and Ben Harper accompanied me.

I also spent some time with the sunrise, a cool morning breeze, a few sprinkles of rain, the humidity of the morning’s cloud cover giving way to midday heat, and the dizzyingly dry afternoon sun.

I forgot to mention the flock of ravens who curiously flew around me after I interrupted their morning chatter. Then there were the baby pronghorn antelope that have seemingly already grown into smaller versions of their mothers. And a million grasshoppers, maybe even two million.

Add in the dozens of fisherman, kayakers, and rafters on the Yellowstone River. And the fellow cutting hay in his fields who watched me run by hour after hour. Mix in a smattering of hikers, a few campers, and lots of ranch trucks driving up and down the roads.

Despite all this, 44 miles was still a long time to run alone.

On another note, I’m happy to state that, with the conclusion of yesterday’s run, I’ve launched wholeheartedly into my taper. It’s been a challenging block of training, but I’m really pleased with how it has progressed. Since my training volume has been halved this week, I have plenty of time to write all about a few of the highlight runs over the next several days.


13 Responses to “The Loneliness Of The Long, Long Run”

  1. Danni says:

    Awesome work! I actually intended to run 43 yesterday for my last long run but ended up at 34 miles and called it good enough. You rock. You should be extra proud.

  2. rick says:

    I love tapers. If you did your work right and you totally did, you hit the taper period with a sigh of relief and a big smile on your face. Now the challenge is not to go crazy and don’t let your body psyche you out. It might go sluggish on you or throw out some weird pains here and there.

    Awesome job on the 44 miles. I thought about your run yesterday.

  3. Abbie says:

    Wow. That is unbelievable. How long did it take you to run that?

  4. Journey to a Centum says:

    Great run Meghan! These long grinds are what get you across the finish line!

  5. JeffO says:

    That sounds like great mileage!
    Less than two weeks to go to the big race!

  6. kendrara says:

    Such beautiful descriptions, Ms. M! It’s nice to know you’re out there enjoying the running and the beauty of nature. Thanks for putting it into words!

  7. Thomas says:

    You make it sound so beautiful!

  8. Meghan says:

    Hi all! Happy Tuesday! It’s a gorgeous morning here after a night of rip-roaring thunderstorms. I hope it’s nice where you are as well!

    Danni- From your report, it sounds like you had a great run. It’s so cool that you have friends that will join you here and there for portions of your long runs, what great boosts they must be! Taper happy!

    Rick- I think I’m inherently lazy, so I love the freakish inactivity of the taper. Just kidding, but in reality, it’s the best break from working so hard! Congrats on your tough day at the races!

    Abbie- It took me 7 hours and 45 minutes. It was gently rolling terrain. It felt “easy” (I know that’s a relative term.) until about mile 38, then I had to focus in the mind towards completing the task. Thank you, you’re very kind!

    Eric- This run was nothing compared to your million summits epic adventure, I have to keep reminding myself of that. Then again, I’m not running the crazy death race, you are. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    JeffO- Thanks! Congrats on finishing this weekend’s 50 miler under duress. When you added up all the racing you’ve been doing, I was like, wow, I’ve been sitting around eating bon bons in comparison, holy crap! I hope you can get your body into healthiness for Leadville!

    Kendrarararara- Thanks darlin’! Best of luck this weekend, and I hope you run until you get sick and maybe even puke! And I say that because I care! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Thomas- It really was beautiful! I’ve run along these roads/trails so much that my mind begins to perceive it all as mundane. Then I recall that this is Yellowstone, and this is Montana, and I am so lucky, and my senses perk back up to the scenes! Thank you!

  9. Beth says:

    I have to say Meghan – running 44 miles just boggles my mind!!! I mean, I guess it makes sense since your race distances are 44++ but still!! Awesome job – glad you got to see a lot while you were out there!! And enjoy that taper! Your big day will be here soon! ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Bob Gentile says:

    Sounds EXACTLY like my long runs Meghan…

    umm except for flock of ravens, baby pronghorn antelope and the million grasshoppers or two million.

    and umm NO fisherman – well maybe driving back from fishing in the ocean And I think I missed the fellow cutting hay in his fields since we have NO hay fields…

    and ummm NO Mix of smattering hikers, nor campers, and absolutely ZERO ranch trucks driving up and down these hot paved roads.

    OTHER then that it sounds EXACTLY like my Long runs ๐Ÿ™‚

    PS: email sent ur way through the air…so look upsie, k.

  11. olga says:

    44 miles, holly-molly! I think I only done it once, before my first 100:) Now I use races for such long runs, and only do in vicinity of 35M by myself or with friends. You are ready, now time to be smart!

  12. Roslyn says:

    In some alternate universe I bet the baby pronghorn antelope, ravens, and grasshoppers are blogging about this amazing human female who ran by them. Cause you really are amazing. What a head you have to keep at it alone for 44 miles.

  13. Meghan says:

    Beth- Let’s just say that some of the things you do (For instance, swimming a distance that really should be run.) boggle my mind!

    Bob- Sigh, I just don’t know what I’m going to do with you. You must come up here for some running and I will show you what this place is all about!

    Olga- I know, you are a racing fiend! For lots of reasons, I will never be able to race as much as you do, so this is the result. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Roslyn- Hah, if I ever find a blog from the perspective of a grasshopper, I will know that I have officially lost my mind! Thanks, you’re very kind!

    Happy Wednesday, all!

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