The 9.5 experiment.

We have just finished a little experiment!Β It was a “do-everything-as-you-would-on-race-day” experiment and the results were promising which is good news! We decided that today’s scheduled training run of 9.5 miles should be done as late in the day as (safely) possible to try to get us used to the experience of running at night. Whilst it wasn’t quite the 10pm “all-nighter” experience we will be having at Wine and Dine, we did do a late evening run which started at 7pm whilst it was still light and ended at 9pm in complete darkness!

As well as running late in the day we also tried to eat similar foods to what we will be eating in the run up to Wine and Dine to see if our bodies felt ok with the things/amount we would be eating. Last night we had a pork stir fry with noodles (similar to some things we may be able to get in Tokyo dining in EPCOT). Then for lunch today we had our chicken and rice (as we are thinking of having a rice-based dish for lunch on race day) and then to finish at about 5pm we had a chicken and swiss cheese sandwich (similar to the kind of sandwiches they sell in the Quick Service restaurant at our hotel). We were feeling really good as we got ready to do our run – full of energy but not feeling too full of food if you know what I mean!

We set off from our car at 7pm and got back just after 9pm. The run took 2 hours and 1 minute! All in all, it was a good experience and we felt good throughout – we took a clif shot at about mile 3.5 which gave us a nice kick of energy for the second half of the run. The only real problem with this run was that we THOUGHT the promenade was lit all along but in actuality there were some pretty long stretches that weren’t lit and running these in the pitch black was a bit hairy. Gideon actually had to get his iPhone out at one point and hold it up with the torch on whilst running because it was that black. Thankfully the path is smooth and there weren’t many other people around but it did feel a little bit like something out of a horror movie in places!!

The weather was good to begin with but when we were in the last third of the run it started to spit a little (which was lovely and refreshing) but as we got to the last 1.5 miles it absolutely hammered down for about 10 minutes causing us to stop and actually put on our raincoats (which luckily we had decided to take with us and tied round our waste). I actually think it spurred us on a little though in that last section as we just wanted to get back to the car as fast as possible and out of the rain!

Overall the experiment went well but i’m not sure we’d be repeating it purely because of the lighting issue on the path. Unless we can find a fully lit place to do our long runs we will probably stick to doing them in the day time.

Still – pretty ecstatic that we just ran 9.5 miles!! Never thought that would have happened this time last year!!! The legs are going to feel it tomorrow!

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11 thoughts on “The 9.5 experiment.

  1. Amazing!! Well done guys.. running in dark can’t be much fun…Maybe invest in a head torch for night running…but if your not planning on doing it often you’ll be fine.. bet you’re looking forward to another (rest) maintenence week now!!

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    1. Yeah that’s what we were thinking with regards to getting a head torch cause you can’t really avoid it in winter. Its ok where there are streetlights but where it’s completely unlit it’s a bit scary and with the council turning off streetlights everywhere to cut costs it might be worth getting a lamp

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  2. Wow you guys are real planners!! I agree. It is a bit tough to run in the dark. I run with a flash light (torch). Yesterday I got a special “treat” and saw my neighbor working out inside his house with all the lights on but no curtains IN THE NUDE! I can’t seem to unremember the sight! Sheesh.

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  3. Wow nice job on the food planning! It’s normally suggested the meal before a race be very light on the stomach – easy to digest carbs, you’ll be running your half faster than your training runs likely so things might feel heavier in your stomach, especially meat. The last meal should be mostly carb based very light on protein. Although you guys seem to be very different, 1 shot block wouldn’t cut it for me for a 2 hour run so maybe you just keep doing what you’re doing lol

    Love running at night but yeah streetlights are needed if you don’t have a headlamp. Everything starts looking like a hole you can fall in and die. You can get decent headlamps for pretty cheap that will suit you well.

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    1. Thanks! I’ll probably take 2 shot blocks in the actual race – one around 3-4 miles and another around 8-9 miles – it got so rainy in the last part of our training run though that I completely forgot it! Had a nice clif bar once back in the car though to perk me back up a bit πŸ™‚

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  4. Great job! Looks like you have it all under control! I’ve got two weeks to the half marathon in Nottingham which is a training run for us and I’ll let you know how we get on but it sounds like you are so much more prepared than we are already so if we can get round then you will smash it!

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    1. I think i’m just a planner by nature so I like to have worked everything out in my head before I have to attempt it. Good luck with the Nottingham half! I’m sure you guys will be fine πŸ™‚ Can’t wait to hear all about it!

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    1. I say do it – it’s helpful to see how your body reacts to certain things before race day so you (hopefully) won’t encounter any nasty surprises πŸ™‚

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