“I think I get addicted to the feelings associated with the end of a long run. I love feeling empty, clean, worn out, and sweat-purged. I love the good ache of muscles that have done me proud.” -Kristin Armstrong, Olympic Athlete and author of Mile Markers: The 26.2 Most Important Reasons Why Women Run
Well said, Kristin. If I enjoy nothing else about a long run (there are some things I like), it is the feeling at the end that makes me feel most satisfied. Here we are, 5 weeks away from the Half Moon Bay International Marathon and I’m feeling mixed emotions: excited, inspired, terrified, worried – excited to prove to myself that I can do something that seems impossible, worried that I’m going to let myself down. Marathon training has proved that A) this is hard work that takes preparation and dedication B) I can push myself further that I think I can. I’ve decided not to expect too much and that for my first marathon, I just want to cross that finish line and not worry about my time.
Deanna, Erin, JuliAnn and I have been doing 14, 16, 18 mile runs working our way up to 23 miles before we taper down a few weeks before the race. I do feel like I am recovering faster and faster each week (sweet!) and have been trying different combinations of food/drinks/gels, etc. to see what works the best for race day. So far, I have been feeling pretty good while keeping Gatorade with me to sip every 2 miles or so and drinking a little bit of water when I see a fountain. PowerBar Energy Blasts have been great for an energy boost mid-run. I’ve been eating healthy while focusing on making sure I get enough protein each day (which is sometimes a challenge since I don’t eat meat) and eating a little more carbs (my favorite part about this whole process!)
Here are a few more specific takeaways:
– don’t drink grape Gatorade after brushing your teeth
– a shower post-run alternating super hot and freezing cold on your legs will really help soreness
– you’re stronger than you think you are
– plan a long route with bathrooms
– don’t wear new shoes on a long run (do a few short runs in them first). This one seems obvious but I didn’t have time to fit in a short run before the long one.. I still love my Brooks PureConnect 2 Running Shoes 🙂
– update your playlist
– pace yourself
Here’s to 5 more weeks of training! Get pumped! If you have any tips on marathon training, please share!