Final Run in Barbados: Saturday Long Run

I don’t know what week of training I am in now but today was set for an 8 mile run. I have only run 8 miles (approximately) once before, and that was last May in Panama. Despite the pain and thus running setback I endured for weeks after, that was either my favorite or most memorable run to date on top of having been my longest run. Even though I had done this distance once, 8 miles sounded daunting. I am now getting into distances I can’t fathom doing. I mean 2 miles seems like nothing, 5 miles seems normal, but 8 miles? I try not to think about long run distances above 10k too much to keep away any self-doubt.

Anyways, the run went well. It started off with a good bit of doubt and mostly delay, as my digestive processes were just not about to cooperate. Eventually I hit the road about 30 minutes later than I had planned. The first 2 to 3 miles were an uphill struggle as has been the theme for me in Barbados. I went back up towards Royal Westmoreland but continued around their whole property. I hit a main highway and made a left turn until I reached my turnaround distance, ending up running through a town called Sion Hill (this was so far uphill that hill is in its name!). It was actually pretty busy up there for a Saturday – there were a lot of cars but fortunately there was a sidewalk so I mostly only had to navigate all the people walking around.

I like when I can explore new places during a run, so in that sense it was a great run. Also, I’ve become pretty accustomed to being the crazy white person running in random places on the side of the road. I’ve gotten used to the honking looky-loos and on this run one guy even dropped his breakfast apple out the window so I went and picked it up for him. While I am in no way naïve and know exactly what I am doing/wearing, I tend to just smile and say good morning to anyone who I pass. (Only if they’re really creepy or obscene do I curse or flip someone off.)

I experimented with a few new things during this run though. First, I tried a Vega Endurance Gel after mile 5. It was not as pleasant of an experience as last week’s chocolate Clif Shot. It had a mealy texture and the raspberry flavor was sour and stronger than it needed to be. I’m sure the Vega gel is better for me and has a much lower sugar content than the Clif shot, but I just don’t think I liked it enough to make it worth it. In addition, I wore my new CEP compression sleeves (last weekend I wore them overnight for recovery). I have to say, they were not nearly as magical as I had heard or hoped…maybe I should just stick to them for recovery. I can only say that my calf muscles etc. were in pain the whole time and I can’t wait to get back to my foam roller.

Well overall, this was definitely a LSD run but I ended it at 8.26 miles and wanting to go more. I can’t believe this was my last run and my last full day of vacation! Well actually, I plan on a short, fun recovery run on the beach in the morning but that’s just because I can.

Photos as usual below of some views, funny signs, and a big tractor on the highway.

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