Back in the fall when I was marathon training for the first time, I didn't like the number 12. I never had a problem with it before, but I hated it during training. The majority of my cutback weeks involved running the miserable 12 miles. Each run was tough and not that good.
This training cycle I wanted to make myself love the number 12. I wanted to appreciate the cutback and less time on my feet. Thus far, I have run 12 miles on 2 occasions. The first one was a disaster, ending in a low blood sugar at mile 10 and walk/running the last mile.
This week I set out to conquer 12 again. I gathered up all of my positive energy and told myself that it was going to be an awesome, wonderful, great, and any other adjective that means the same thing run.
Although this week's run wasn't as bad as the previous 12 miler, it was less than ideal. I started out feeling crappy, and ended with such a relief to be done. It was like I had run twice that distance and it took three times the effort.
The whole thing with the number 12 is odd. I can run 10 miles, or 11, no problem. Thirteen? I've raced that distance more than any other. Fifteen, eighteen, twenty? I can manage. It is 12 that kills me. Perhaps my runs are due to the fact that I ran a high mileage run the previous week. Maybe it is just mental. I am seriously debating changing my training plan so on cutback weeks I can run 13 or 11, never 12. I think I might give 12 one more shot, and then make a final call after that.
Is there a number of miles that you have a hard time running? I have the most trouble with 12, but 6 is also occasionally troublesome for me.