A key component of marathon training is the long run. I've done lots of what my plan calls medium long runs, that is up to 26 km (16 miles) and before I had to take a break from training due to my calf injury, I ran a single 29 km (18 miles).
Yesterday was my first time to attempt a long run after the injury, I had a 32 km (20 miles) scheduled. The day started with lots of rain and wind, but after midday the rain stopped and a bit of sun appeared. The coach from the local running club Guldborgsundløberne joined me at the last minute, planning to tag along for part of the run. We ended up running most of it together, a very nice but also hard course as he included a 5 km stretch on a beach. It's a beautiful experience running at the edge of the beach on a sunny day, but that sand sure is heavy to run in. Good training though!
After leaving the beach still having 12 km left, the sun really broke through and I felt great pretty much the whole way home. No denying I had tired legs and I was rather happy the run was over, but I still had the energy to complete the run with the last kilometre at 4:50 min/km (07:47 min/mile), pretty much my goal marathon pace.
All in all a great training day. I am happy with my performance and I am really beginning to look forward to the marathon, both with excitement and a little scared, as the reality of the distance is beginning to dawn on me.