I ran very little between August and April for various reasons and it was incredibly hard when I started running again. I struggled to run well even five months after I started running again. My last race, a 10-miler in August, was incredibly hard on my body. I then took a 3 week vacation from running. When I began running again last week, it felt completely different. It felt really good! I ran five miles yesterday and it was better than anytime I ran during the previous five months. I hope this is a good sign. Twenty six miles is a LONG distance.