I noticed last weekend that I got a couple of small blisters after my 20 miler, so I put a strip of tape under both feet to cover the area. I usually don't get blisters in my trail shoes, but since I was going to run on a paved bike path, I was wearing my Mizuno Waverider 12. I like those shoes, except for two things: the sole is a bit mushy and once they get wet, they never seem to dry. I can cross a river with my La Sportiva Crosslite and my feet feel dry after 30 minutes, if that. Unfortunately, the Crosslites are NOT road shoes.
On Friday, I stopped by the Mountain Equipment Coop to buy some food (gels, Cliff bars) and made the mistake of going in the shoe section. My Crosslites are perfect, but once my feet swell after 40 or 50k, they become a bit small and my toes hit the front of the toe box. Perfect excuse to buy me some oversized shoes. I tried a few and settled on the La Sportiva Wildcats. They are a bit more substancial that the Crosslites, but I bet they will feel real good in the second half of longer races. I made sure they felt just a little too big. I might put them in my halfway drop bag in Haliburton, if I don't just decide to run the whole race with them.
So back to the training run. Taped my feet (used one of my precious tincture of benzoin applicator as adhesive, recommended: don't waste your time taping without adhesive), filled my hydration bladder, filled a gel flask with 6 gels, put some sun screen on, prepared two bottles of Accelerade and I was ready. I set up a chair in our paddling club's tent, with a bathing suit, towel and the Accelerade bottles. It was 9AM and already the humidity was oppressive.
I hate running that long by myself. I have a fairly active inner life, but this is ridiculous. I didn't want to carry my iPhone because the weather called for T-storms. People asking me how far I was going gave me a weird look when I told them. I took off. My plan was to break it down in 10k out-and-back sections but once I got going I decided to go our 12.5k for a 25k loop. My 2 liters (70oz) bladder would last that long. It was haaaawt. I was sweating like crazy. I do a run 13, walk 2 cycle. When I stop, I take a swig of gel and wash it down with water. Worked great.
After the first 25k, I downed almost a whole bottle of Accelerade, changed into my bathing suit and jumped into the canal, keeping my shirt on to rinse it a bit. It felt goood. Changed back into my shorts, put my shoes back on, refilled the bladder, which was almost empty, changed my socks, popped a couple of Advil and took off.
The skies opened up. Thunder, lightning, rain. It felt great. I love running in the rain. This lasted about 10k and then it stopped but the humidity wasn't quite so bad after. The second half was actually easier than the first one, except for that last extra kilometer that I had added, "just to be sure". What was I thinking?
So it is done. My right Achilles' felt ok. The tape did its job and I didn't get any blister, despite running the second 25k with wet feet. As I mentioned, the Mizuno's just won't dry once they get wet. The sole of my feet was completely white when I took my sock off, but the tape protected my sensitive areas.
I'm happy this is done. Haliburton should be fun.