This is how these last handful of long runs on my marathon training schedule feel. I wonder if I will ever get to a place/pace where I don't sort of agonize over these runs. Perhaps if I were "fast" I wouldn't feel this way, but I am expecting to be out there for up to 3.5 hours of actual running time to cover today's 18 miler, not including potty break(s). That's a really long time to be moving. There are many people who finish the complete marathon distance at their "easy pace" in the time it takes me to run 20 miles at MY easy pace. I'd just be happy to be able to do my 20 milers in under 3 hours, rather than approaching the 4 hour mark.
I know losing 15-20 (or more...I could lose 25 and still be at a very healthy weight) would go a LONG way towards making me faster, but as long as these stupid food/candy-centric holidays keep cropping up at regular intervals this is not bound to happen quickly. I hope to be well under 140#s for my second marathon, which will beat where I was for #1 after taper bloat. But under 120#s would be ideal. Some calculators suggest an increase in speed of ~3 seconds/mile/pound lost. This would net me a pace increase of about a minute/mile...which would make my 20 mile runs 20 minutes faster...hmmm.... And the faster I run, the more miles I could cover in the same amount of time, which would make me faster still.
Now I just need to put on blinders when I walk by the Easter candy displays at the store. Man, I LOVES me some Cadbury caramel eggs! :p