I hope you had a nice long weekend (if you got Monday off) and your [short!] week has started off well. Again, not a lot of interesting things to report on these parts—I went to Spokane for the weekend to visit my friend Anna, which was ridiculously needed/enjoyable. Lots of laughing, staying up late, food, etc. Fun was had by all.
Last week, I did something I’ve rarely done before…I ran 5 days in a row. It wasn’t really planned, it just kind of happened. And despite feeling really tired on the final day (Saturday), everything held up well! I’m really pleased with how the ol’ legs have seemed to be recovering in this base-building stage, and it gets me even more excited for Eugene training to start in 1.5 weeks!
Speaking of, there are a few things I’m planning on doing differently this time around. Or at least, there are some things I’ll be doing differently and some that worked before that I’ll be incorporating again. Here are some of my focal points for this training session, in list form for your (and my) convenience.
1) An actual training program
Yes, it’s true. I ran my first, second, and third marathon all via a self-made regimen I think my first program was *loosely* based on Hal Higdon, but not very closely. It’s worked out in certain ways (more flexibility, more personalized tailoring) but since I’ve gotten two (minor) overuse injuries in my past two training sessions, I’m heading over to the pros.
I’ll be following a Pete Pfitzinger plan from his book Advanced Marathoning. More details on that to come—but essentially I’ll be following the 12-week program to a T, with minor adjustments if I need some rearranging. But other than any scheduling conflicts or necessary resting…my training is going to be entirely dictated by this plan.
2) SLOW running!
One of the reasons I’ve been able to do a good amount of running recently is because I’m doing my fast runs fast, and my slow runs slow. I talked about it last week, but I’m realizing just how beneficial slow paces can be—you still log miles, however without the strain of always running a more difficult pace.
Rocket science people. I love that I’ve learned this though…because not only is it helpful in recovery, I’m realizing I kind of love running slowly. It takes the pressure off, or something. It’s like a different type of running, if that makes any sense? Less plugged in, less intense, just leisurely happy running. Plus it means I get to run with BF—my new favorite dating activity.
3) Stretching, foam rolling, compressing
Yada yada yada, I always say I need to do this—I’m not normally the best at it. In fact, the universe is rolling her eyes and laughing right now at me because recently I’ve been exceptionally bad at it.
But, it helps make the miles feel better and eliminates the usual aches and pains. I’m committing to these small but mighty tasks. In two months, if I tell you that I’ve been slacking on rolling or that I’ve “forgotten” to stretch my always-so-tight hamstrings, someone come hit me over the head with my roller.
Only kind of not kidding at all.
4) Good fuel
I’m someone who can really feel the benefits when I put good, wholesome food in my body. I’m also a big believer in real food—meaning not protein bars, not sports drinks, not packaged things—to be the very best fuel for our bodies. It’s truly a personal matter for everyone, but for me—the more simple the foods, the better. A diseased digestive system will let you know this very quickly.
Therefore, lots of vegetables, lots of fruit, lots of fish, etc. It’s not necessarily that I want these things all the time—but my stomach and my muscles always appreciate it. So during the week, and pre-long runs, I’m going to at least try to eat like an athlete. Although I also believe eating for sport and eating cookies are definitely not mutually exclusive. The desserts stay. Brain health is important too.
I started a training journal after Chicago, and I think it’s been a really helpful tool to not only track mileage, but also for tracking progress and general running “check-ins.” In that journal, I’m not afraid to hate-write “THAT SUCKED” all about a horrible run, or “I FELT INCREDIBLE!” after a good long run. There’s a little more privacy, and honesty, in a training journal that isn’t splashed all over the internet, and for me—it’s been the only way to successfully track my mileage.
But don’t worry, I’ll still be posting weekly training recaps here 🙂
That’s all folks! I’m getting excited to get this show under way. I feel like I’ve done more prep work—both physically and mentally—for this round of training than I ever have before, and that preparedness has eased a lot of nerves and paved the way for a shot-gun start. I’m feeling ready, and that’s exactly where I want to be.
Oh! One last thing…WATER, WATER, WATER, WATER, NUUN, WATER, WATER, WATER!
How do you get psyched for marathon training?
What things do you incorporate along with the miles of marathon training?
Tell me about your weekend!