Negative splits on my 18 miler (streak day 92) #twit2fit

Last week, I ran a 16 miler in which I never got my legs under me.   My expected easy/long run pace is roughly 9:30 per mile, but I’m okay with 10 minute miles given the warmer weather. My result was a 10:19 pace for 16 miles, with the last few miles being a struggle to stay under 11 minutes.

This week’s run started off slow (10:30 1st, 10 minutes for each of the next four miles). Starting about mile 8, I started hitting my stride, and finished with a nice, comfortable 9:42 average pace for the 18 mile run — 2:54:43 for 18.03 miles.

Last weeks’ run was roughly the same conditions as this weeks, but I made a few adjustments to get me a negative split (first half/second half):
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Change 1:
Two Fridays in a row with brutal afternoon conditions (~100’F Heat Index). Last week, I ran a 5-miler on Iroquois Hill in that nastiness. This week, I ran a 4.25 mile 2% treadmill run yesterday. Hydration and muscles were much better today.

Change 2:
Added the Camelbak Elixir electrolytes tabs this week… they’re lemon-lime flavored with electrolytes but no sugar to mess up the Camelbak liner:

Change 3:
Last week was probably the first run in which I really needed to take in extra sugar before or during the run. I didn’t take anything with me, and had to end up taking a detour to Wal-Mart (the gas station part) at mile 11 to get some orange juice.

This week, I got some Strawberry Banana GU and took them at miles 2.5, 6, 10.5, and 14. My normal pick is the Powerbar brand gels, but I thought I’d try the GU since it’s a bit thicker. (By the way, this flavor was one of the nastiest gel flavors I’ve used of any brand, but it did the trick)

Course map:

RunningAHEAD – Strings_n_88keys’s log: View Workout.