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I Ran 20 Miles!!!

by Meghann on May 9, 2009

Tears came to my eyes this morning as I watched my Garmin turn to 20 miles and knew I had accomplished something that very few people will ever even attempt.


20 miles? Did I really just run 20 miles? Hell yeah I did and I am going to rock that 26.2 miles in three weeks!!

Before the 20 miles and before the sun rose, my alarm went off at 5:00am and I prepared for my very long run by loading up with the best fuel I know of.


A Bagel, Naturally Nutty Vanilla Almond Butter & a Small Apple. This is always a no fail combo for me, I know it will keep me energized without bringing me down.

I arrived at Blue Jacket Park right before 6:00am and met up with my Team in Training group. Our coach handed us glow in the dark bracelets so she could see us on the trail.

Technically everyone was suppose to just run 12 miles this morning and do 20 next week. However next Saturday I will be in San Antonio for work and will be unable to find the time to run 20 miles. Instead I opted to run the distance this morning which meant I would be running along side the team for the first 12 and then venturing off on my own for the remaining 8.

In order to build up the 12 mile distance from our location we were instructed loop around Lake Baldwin 4 times! 4 times? Ughh… I hate going around and around like a hamster in a wheel, but since I did not know the area very well I stuck with it and completed the 2.5 mile loop 4 times.

Running the loop was a bit of a bore. Each loop I concentrated on my pace and the music in my head to get me through it. I was keeping a fairly decent 9:30 pace and even though my legs wanted to go faster I kept reminding them of the 20 miles ahead and got them to slow down.

After I completed the 4 loops I popped two Strawberry Shot Bloks in my mouth and headed to my car where a little surprise was waiting for me.


That’s right! Derek came to my rescue so that I wouldn’t have to run the final 8 miles alone! He was so sweet to meet me at 8:00am to rollerblade while I ran. The longest he had ever rollerbladed was 4 or 5 miles so this was a first for him too!

We set off to find some shaded roads in the neighborhoods surrounding the park. We managed to eat up 4 or 5 miles mingling our way through. The shade was a welcomed addition to the run and the possibility of getting lost distracted me from how much farther there was left to go.

This is actually the point where my legs started to ache, but I pushed on through trying not to think about it.

We decided around mile 16 to head back to the park and make one final loop around the lake to make it to the big 2-0. This would be my 5th time of the day circling the lake, but I knew it would give me the perfect amount of miles I needed so I pushed on.

I started to feel weak at this point and began chewing on these Energy Sports Beans.


I don’t like Jelly Beans, but these were free and sitting in my pantry. I was pleasantly surprised that they didn’t taste like Jelly Beans at all – or maybe I was just dillusional at this point? – they were very chewy and yummy.

After the beans I realized my camelbak was out of water! With less then 3 miles left this turned into a 100% mental thing. I kept thinking how nice water would be at this point and how it seemed like forever until I was going to get any. I started freaking out until I remembered the dog park on the corner had a water fountain in it.

I sent Derek ahead on the rollerblades to fill up his gatorade bottle with water. I felt so much better after had that first thirst quenching swig. I had less then 2 miles left and was out of excuses, I was going to finish this run!

The final stretch was tough. I kept shouting out the distance increments…. 1.5 miles left… 1.25 miles left… 1 mile left. What do distance runners do with out a Garmin?!?!

The last mile was the hardest – I was in pain, I was tired and I had to just keep pushing through. Derek was great. He kept telling me I had this and started asking what animal I was looking forward to seeing most at the San Diego Zoo. I told him I really wanted to see the Pandas!

Finally I rounded the last corner and my Garmin beeped. *20 Miles!* It said 20 miles! I had to bend over and cry. I could not believe what I had just done. I ran 20 miles! I just can’t stop saying it!!

Running Stats:

Total Distance: 20.00 miles

Total Time: 03:13:15

Average Pace: 9:46

Average Heart Rate: 168

Total Calories Burned: 1957

We walked back to my car and I immediately had to stretch out my legs.


They were TIGHT! Actually they still feel tight!

I had a Pear waiting for me in the car that I immediately devoured.


Derek and I had errand to run before heading back so I didn’t get to my apartment until an hour after my run. At this point I was experiencing that same weak, shaky feeling I had last week after my 18 miler. It’s odd because I did not feel hungry, but my body needed proper fueling ASAP or I was going to faint.

The wonderful and very experienced Bobbi, recommended I have a Protein Smoothie after my long runs so I broke out the Breville Die Cast Hemisphere Blender and put it to work.


Inside I had

  • 1 cup Original Coconut Milk
  • 1 package Hemp Chocolate Protein Powder
  • Strawberries
  • Pineapple
  • Peanut Butter
  • Ice

This actually made 2 glasses. I had one and shared the other with Derek who had to add sugar to his…lol


With the Protein Smoothie I had 1/2 cup Meghann’s Running Mix and 1/2 cup Kashi Go Lean.


This was exactly what I needed. It was just enough to make that awful weak, shaky feeling go away and not feel like I over stuffed myself. I am sure the true long run hunger will come along later and I will be sure to listen to it.

Right now all I want to do is lay out by the pool and celebrate my Sister’s birthday this evening. It’s going to be a great Saturday!

1 modhealth May 9, 2009 at 11:28 am

Great job! 20 miles is a LONG way. I’m a fan of the sports beans over the shot blocks. I find the shock blocks get stuck in my mouth and I feel like a dog with peanut butter in the roof of my mouth lol.

2 Heather May 9, 2009 at 11:36 am

Hi Meghann! I am a huge fan of your blog and decided to finally delurk today. Congratulations on such an amazing accomplishment! You will kick butt in San Diego!

3 Amy May 9, 2009 at 11:36 am

20 miles is amazing!! Awesome stuff 🙂

4 Suzanne May 9, 2009 at 11:38 am

20 miles?!?! WOW!!! Congratulations! I’m so impressed! I really hope I can do that one day! Good work 😀

5 Run Sarah May 9, 2009 at 11:38 am

Congratulations…you are SO ready for the marathon!!

6 Julia May 9, 2009 at 11:39 am

Congratulations! 20 miles is such a huge accomplishment! Have a great time celebrating tonight!

7 caitlin May 9, 2009 at 11:42 am

Wow congrats! thats a very impressive accomplishment! I hope to be standing in your shoes at some point in my life because that is an amazing thing! 🙂

8 Pearl May 9, 2009 at 11:44 am

oh my gosh! CONGRATULATIONS! and how nice of Derek to come run/skate with you!

9 Crunchy Granola Girl May 9, 2009 at 11:45 am

Wow congratulations Meghann- you must be on top of the world right now! I do not have a Garmin and have to map out all my long runs on ): Maybe someday…

Enjoy laying by the pool & celebrating with your sister!

10 Nicole May 9, 2009 at 11:46 am

Awesome job! Definitely enjoy your day with your sister!

11 Sharon May 9, 2009 at 11:47 am

WHOA, look at you go!!!! Congratulations!

12 Laura May 9, 2009 at 11:47 am

Congrats Meghann!!! You are going to rock that marathon. 😀

Enjoy the rest of your Saturday!

13 Matt May 9, 2009 at 11:51 am

Awesome run! Welcome to the 20 mile club!

14 jenngirl May 9, 2009 at 11:51 am

Wow Congrats! And have a great Saturday!! 🙂

15 Susan May 9, 2009 at 11:51 am

CONGRATS!!! You’ve got that marathon in the bag!!

16 Emily May 9, 2009 at 11:51 am

Congrats, Meghann! That is so awesome! You’ll do great in your upcoming marathon.

It was so incredibly sweet of Derek to come and support you during your hard training run. He’s a keeper. 🙂

17 Mallory May 9, 2009 at 11:51 am

Congrats Meghann! What an accomplishment…and just think how great the 26.2 will be! Also, congrats to Derek for being so sweet…those are the best kinds of surprises 🙂

18 snackface May 9, 2009 at 11:52 am

CONGRATS STUNNA!!! That is so amazing! You know what I’ve done this morning? Uploaded photos on facebook and eaten oats. Mad props to running 20 miles, you running diva!

Enjoy the rest of your day, relaxing and loving life 🙂

19 Cecilia May 9, 2009 at 11:53 am


20 Jaime May 9, 2009 at 11:53 am

Holy hell woman. That is amazing and insane!! Your excitement is so contagious. I’m not even a runner and reading your enthusiam actually brought tears to my eyes. You should be sooooo proud!

21 whitneyinchicago May 9, 2009 at 11:55 am

Congrats!! I actually did a PDR today too (but it was only 8 miles). I am running a 10 mile race in a few weeks and am thinking about signing up for a half.

You are going to do great in SD!

22 janeterin May 9, 2009 at 11:57 am

You are amazing! Great work! Take it easy on yourself today! 🙂

23 Meredith May 9, 2009 at 12:00 pm

That is awesome! Congratulations! I cannot imagine how wonderful and strong you feel.

24 Leah May 9, 2009 at 12:03 pm

Way to go Meghann!!! Amazing recap!! You are so motivational girlie 🙂 I can’t wait until I can run 20 miles! I can barely do 10!

25 Katherine May 9, 2009 at 12:10 pm

That is incredible!!! congratulations girl!!!

You are very inspiring 🙂

i ran 3.3 miles this morning haha 🙂

26 Joanne May 9, 2009 at 12:14 pm

Wow this is SOOO awesome. Those 26 miles are totally attainable for you. Way to go. It was so sweet of Derek to come run with you, I’m sure that made the time fly by more than it would have otherwise.

Isn’t it weird how long run hunger doesn’t set in until hours later?

27 Michelle May 9, 2009 at 12:15 pm

Congratulations, what an amazing accomplishment!! You are going to bust through that marathon with no problem at all. How sweet of Derek to keep you company for the last part of your run. Enjoy the rest of your Saturday!!

28 Island Girl Eats May 9, 2009 at 12:18 pm

Congrats! That is awesome. The longest that I have run is 18 miles – not quite 20 miles, but almost! I am going for a long run early tomorrow morning. I am going to start out and do 8 miles. I am really looking forward to it.
Good job – have a nice treat today, you deserve it!

29 weight and meditate May 9, 2009 at 12:25 pm

Congratulations! And that Derek sure is a sweetie.

30 Alison May 9, 2009 at 12:30 pm

Congrats!! There’s something so special about knocking that 20 miler out before the big day! Way to go!

Have you ever tried ice baths after a long run? I’ve done it for runs beyond 12 miles, they say it help with soreness in the following days. I draw an ice bath (usually can’t go much lower than 60 degrees) and take a cup of hot tea and a magazine to get through those tough 10 minutes! I think they say you have to do it within the hour of your long run though, to flush out the build up of lactic acid from your muscles…. it’s a freaky but fun post long run ritual!

31 Sarah May 9, 2009 at 12:32 pm

Congratulations Megan, that is phenomenal! I LOVE how Derek met you to help you finish strong! Enjoy the rest of your day in your green bikini.

32 Melissa S. May 9, 2009 at 12:32 pm

Great job w/ the twenty miles today Meghann! But make sure you get in lots and lots more to eat today! you may not feel the tummy rumble as normally as it would w/o that kind of work out (i had that when i was marathon training) so eat even when you’re not hungry!!!

and go derek for meeting you to rollar blade the last 8! if only my leg were cooperating..i totally would have run that last leg w/ you. boooohiissss.

33 rediscoveringlauren May 9, 2009 at 12:32 pm

wow thats so amazing…your going to rock that marathon 🙂

34 karla May 9, 2009 at 12:32 pm

congrats!! i’m getting ready to start training for my first marathon…you are such an inspiration!

35 Niki May 9, 2009 at 12:39 pm

Great job! You are awesome and so inspiring! Have a GREAT, relaxing rest of the day!!

36 Emily May 9, 2009 at 12:49 pm

that’s an awesome accomplishment! such a great feeling!

enjoy your saturday!

37 Amanda May 9, 2009 at 12:53 pm

Congrats Meghann – that is a huge accomplishment! So so nice of Derek to meet you … have a fun day!

38 caitlin May 9, 2009 at 1:06 pm

great run!!!

i love derek. what a guy!!

39 Justy2003 May 9, 2009 at 1:08 pm

Awesome job on the 20-miler! And a decent pace, too! You’re going to do awesome at the marathon…and I’m so looking forward to hearing about it!
Enjoy the rest of your Saturday!

40 Jennifer @ His N' Her Health May 9, 2009 at 1:11 pm

Great job on the 20 miles. Derek is so nice for meeting you!

41 Andrea May 9, 2009 at 1:13 pm

You are a rockstar! So is Derek for being there for you!

42 Amy C. May 9, 2009 at 1:16 pm

WOOOOHOOOOO! I am tearing up for how good you did on your 20 miler. You’re going to rock that marathon. 😀 Derek, you rock for a doing the last 8 miles with Meghann. You guys are so cute. Have a fun rest of the day!!!!

43 Hallie May 9, 2009 at 1:24 pm

AMAZING. Great job! And the best part is the confidence you run gave you. If you can do 20, you can do a marathon, NO prob!!

44 Brooke May 9, 2009 at 1:37 pm

Great job Meghann!
Do you like the Garmin 305? Would you recommend that one over the 405?

45 Lindsay May 9, 2009 at 1:54 pm

That is awesome! Way to go!

46 Danielle May 9, 2009 at 2:01 pm

Congratu(friggin)lations Meg! That’s absolutely incredible 🙂

47 lilveggiepatch May 9, 2009 at 2:08 pm

Congratulations Megan! What a milestone (literally 🙂 ). And so sweet of Derek to come meet you and go the last leg with you.

48 janetha May 9, 2009 at 2:19 pm

WOW! good for you girl! that is seriously an accomplishment, and to burn nearly 2000 calories. whew! you will whip that marathon out like it is nothin’!!

49 HelpMeghanRun May 9, 2009 at 2:20 pm

Congrats! Eat a lot and enjoy your day. 🙂

50 Christina May 9, 2009 at 2:47 pm

Congratulations!!! At first I thought I had read it wrong. 20 miles!? That’s awesome! Have a great rest of the day 🙂

51 diana May 9, 2009 at 3:01 pm

You did a great job! Look at that pace for a 20 miler too. You are going to be rocking that marathon in 3 weeks! Rest up and enjoy the rest of the weekend.

52 Amanda @ Fake Ginger May 9, 2009 at 3:18 pm

Congratulations! That’s so awesome. You did amazing and you’re so lucky to have someone like Derek who’s willing to get up early and work out with you.

53 Lynne May 9, 2009 at 3:43 pm

Congrats! 20 miles is awesome!

54 Karen May 9, 2009 at 3:47 pm

Great job on the 20 miler! Isn’t it great to hit huge milestones?

55 Kristin May 9, 2009 at 4:09 pm

Amazing post – I have goosebumps!!! What an awesome accomplishment – good for you!!!!

56 Amelia May 9, 2009 at 4:21 pm

That’s amazing! Way to go you!!! 🙂

57 Emily May 9, 2009 at 4:23 pm

that is ridiculous, you are a rock star!

58 wholefoodswholeme May 9, 2009 at 4:53 pm

you are insane, in the BEST possible way!! seriously. you are incredible – even just reading this made me on edge and out of breath!

59 Jordan May 9, 2009 at 4:55 pm

Holy crap woman. You never cease to amaze me. I kinda wanna start running again thanks to you.

60 ksgoodeats May 9, 2009 at 5:34 pm

CONGRATS!!! 26 is nothing now that you’ve passed the 20 miler mark!

61 runnerskitchen May 9, 2009 at 5:42 pm

Great job on the 20-miler! You’re going to have so much fun in San Diego. Finishing your first marathon is such an awesome feeling 🙂 Make sure to hydrate and fuel early on during the 26.2. Have a wonderful weekend!

62 jane May 9, 2009 at 5:54 pm

congrats! truly amazing, megan 🙂

63 Erin May 9, 2009 at 6:36 pm

That’s awesome Meghann! Great job! High five!

64 Katrina (gluten free gidget) May 9, 2009 at 7:07 pm

I can’t imagine running that far. I can barely run 1.5 miles outside! You are A-MAZING!!!!!!!!!!! Look at you and your bad marathon running self!

65 Mica May 9, 2009 at 7:15 pm

Congratulations on 20 miles!

66 Meredith May 9, 2009 at 8:29 pm

Wow! Congratulations!

67 Mariposa May 9, 2009 at 8:56 pm

wow!!! 20 miles is a huge accomplishment!! nicely done! you’re right, you are going to rock the marathon!!

68 biz319 May 9, 2009 at 8:59 pm

great job Meghann! I had no doubt that you could do it!

Nice of Derek to help you the last 8 miles!

69 Stephanie May 9, 2009 at 10:29 pm

You go girl! Pandas are a great motivator – my fav! San Diego has the best exhibit I have ever seen – better than the Beijing Zoo!!!

70 Allison May 10, 2009 at 7:31 am

Meghann!!!! that is just absolutely AWESOME! congrats, you should be so proud of yourself, because 20 miles is a HUGE accomplishment (and of course- you rocked it out, just like i knew you would! i cant wait to hear how fabulous the marathon goes!)

71 jenn May 10, 2009 at 8:54 am

im so jealous you can run that far. i had to miss my first ever race this wknd, a 10k, due to knee pain. i actually cried b/c i couldnt do it.

72 Lauren May 10, 2009 at 9:47 am

You should be so proud of your accomplishment! Good job!

73 catruns May 10, 2009 at 9:49 am

I can’t even imagine running 20 miles! Congratulations! I’m quite impressed that you were able to push through the mental block, its something that I’m already struggling with and I’m still working up to running three miles (in an ideal world I’ll make it there next week!). Thanks for the inspiration to push myself!

74 Erin May 10, 2009 at 9:56 am

Congratulation Meghann! 20 miles is amazing! You will do so well in the marathon! I’m rooting for you!

75 RunToFinish May 10, 2009 at 11:09 am

oh gosh you give me hope that my run will go well next weekend!! I will be having a smoothie post run as they are one of the best ways to get all the nutrients back in

76 RK May 10, 2009 at 4:17 pm

I know this is a little late, but I wanted to offer my congratulations as well. You are truly amazing and an inspiration. Way to push through those last few tough miles. It was so, so sweet of Derek to meet you to finish off your run. He earned mega brownie points 😉

77 Stacey May 11, 2009 at 9:47 am

Go you! I get that feeling when I have conquered a longer mile too!! I can’t wait to get up to 20!! What a great accomplishment, you go girl 🙂

78 elise May 11, 2009 at 5:11 pm

congrats stud 🙂

79 chandra May 12, 2009 at 12:07 pm

I know this is way late (sorry, still catching up on reading from being gone last week!) but I really wanted to tell you congrats on the 20 miles! You almost made me tear up reading this – you rocked it! And that was SO sweet of Derek to come meet you, I really hope I get a great guy like that one of these days. 🙂

80 Sara May 22, 2009 at 5:57 am

Congrats on the 20-miles!! What a great accomplishment – you are going to rock that marathon!!

I used to swear by the sports beans, and at the end of my 1st marathon training, someone recommended the GU energy gels to me. I tried them during my race and really noticed a difference. The vanilla bean was actually pretty yummy 🙂 I know some people like the taste, some don’t, but you’re supposed to take one every 45 min. during endurance activity, so it gave me something to look forward to each hour during the race 🙂

Thanks for the inspiration this morning!!

81 Janelle August 21, 2010 at 2:08 pm

I think I found my twin! I ran 20 today and did the exact same time! Good job girl! I am training for Chicago – 10.10.10 – marathon number 2! I love the pics of your food and can’t wait to try the protein shake!
Best of luck!

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