Marathon Diaries – 10
Marathon Training has been pretty hard over the last few weeks, with niggles and potential injuries it’s felt a bit like taking one step forward and two back.
My body has responded incredibly well to the activity level increase over the last few months, mainly because I’ve been following all the rules. Now life has gotten busier with the new job and a potential house move, stress is creeping in. My body is starting to physically respond to the pressure I’ve been piling on it.
The other side to being super busy is that my support exercises have dropped; what I mean by this is that I’ve been getting my miles in but my strength training, stretching, and even to some extent recovery days have been invaded by my life.
So what have I been up to running wise, well most notably I hit my 20 miles, the furthest I’ll run until the big day! What does it feel like to run 20 miles, well it’s hard. I’m not particularly fast so being on the road for 3.5 hours is tough. I’d been having problems with my left knee and right hip, and I was overly conscious of every little twinge, the wind was against me on the way out and it made everything slower than normal.
I had told myself before that if any of those pains turned in to actual PAIN, I would stop and put off 20 miles for another week. The pains never materialised and my legs kept churning and that’s when you start to buy in to the idea that a lot of this really is mind over matter. Coming home with my watch bleeping that I had done it felt incredible, but I have to add this caveat… I had and still have no idea how I’m meant to tag on another 6.2 miles. It was bittersweet, I felt completely capable and incapable all at once.
I had one weekend long run left before the taper; I was aiming for around the 16-18 mile mark. I decided to instead give myself a weekend off, because sometimes that’s just what you need. I could have fit in one more long run, but to be honest that’s not what my body or mind needed. I needed a lie in, and a bath, and to see my family and friends, and to eat all the chocolates.
Am I now suddenly filled with dread that this means I won’t make it round the 26.2, sure, a little bit! But am I feeling refreshed, ready to kick start my taper routine, and start the official countdown to the marathon, Heck Yes!
It’s Taper Time!
Now I get to run comfortable distances, keep up my yoga routine, spend time in the gym strengthening all the bits and bobs that have been failing me the last few weeks, and most importantly rest…
Becuase in just 19 days, what once seemed like a pipe dream that sat at the top of my bucket list will be my reality. I am doing it.