Catching up as MCM approaches

October 20, 2016

in Fitness, Just life, Training

Marathoners can all agree that training can feel like a part-time job. For me it isn’t just the time spent on the run (which is at the higher end of the time spectrum because I’m not too speedy) but also going to bed early and waking up early. The last few weeks with higher mileage left me with less time to sit and write a blog post.

Lexa and me

Lexa and me

A week and a half ago, October 9, I ran my highest mileage I would run during training: 20 miles. The weather was perfect; cool and mostly cloudy. I was fortunate enough to have not one, not two, but THREE running buddies. Lexa did the first five miles with me, Heather

jumped in for the next seven, I had just one mile alone, and then Steph met me for the home stretch of 7 miles.

It means so so SO much to me that not only are people willing to schedule MY run into their schedule, but they also don’t complain about running my pace, which is slower than their regular paces!

I did better with eating my GU energy gel on schedule. Usually I’m late eating it, and I do notice a difference when I stay ahead of the necessity and hunger.

The route had a nice mix of flat and rolling hills. I took walking breaks when I needed to, and my running buddies were gracious and encouraging. I knew what to expect, because this was

Heather and me

Heather and me

the same exactly route I ran when I did my 20 mile training run back in 2013.

One thing I noticed this time around is how much less sore I am the day after a long run. Sure, my knees hurt when I get up from a seated position or going down a flight of stairs the day of the run, but the soreness is minimal the next day.

Before, I would be down for the count the rest of the day after a long run. I had to make sure I got all my housework and laundry done the day before because I knew I’d be worthless. The next day I had a pretty good deal of soreness.

This time around, my weekends have been so busy, I haven’t had time after a long run to lay around. There were a few runs early on after which I indulged in a nap, but as the distance increased my free time decreased.

Steph and me

Steph and me

There seemed to be one downside of not getting a nap after the 20 miler. I did dishes that night and in my tired state thought it was okay to prop the oval crock pot insert up against the dish drainer on the counter to dry. I remember thinking quickly that it didn’t seem like the best idea but that thought left as soon as it came.

A minute later with my back turned, the crock pot insert crashed to the kitchen floor. One of the pieces, with a sharp and jagged edge from the break, cut the back of my ankle just above the heel.

Blood gushed immediately, and I ripped a paper towel from the roll and sat down on the kitchen floor. I raised my leg up and applied pressure to the cut, while calling for my husband upstairs and trying to keep my curious dogs away from the mess.

Teary after 20

Teary after 20

I didn’t know if the cut needed stitches or not, but the bleeding stopped after a few minutes and I put a band-aid on it. Surprisingly, the cut didn’t really hurt much, but boy when I put running shoes on Tuesday morning it was a bit painful! The pain subsided after a few blocks and I got my 4 miles in. That day at work I talked to another runner who has had his share of injuries to deal with this year. He suggested I take a few days off from running and give the cut a chance to heal. At this point in my training, he said, my mileage and progress wouldn’t suffer. It was more important to let things heal a bit.

I took the rest of the week off and got 7 miles in for my long run (instead of 12). The run felt good but I just didn’t give myself enough time to get where I needed to be afterward so I cut it short.

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

Over the past week, Taper Madness has begun to set in. It sounds like a weird or fictional thing, but I assure you it’s a very real thing. Yesterday I hopped on the MCM website and the countdown stared at me: 10 DAYS. And the feelings of panic set in.

Is that foot pain I feel or am I imagining it?

Do I need a larger-capacity equipment belt?

Is the fuel I use the best for me or should I have tried something else during training? FB_IMG_1475264298266

What kind of spaghetti sauce will my SIL serve the night before? Is it rude of me to send her the recipe I have for my friend’s mom’s magic sauce? Or maybe I’ll just make it myself and take it with me.

What should I wear for the race?

Is my phone’s case waterproof?

You get the idea.

All I can do now is trust the process, trust the training, and enjoy these last few days of preparation before the big day.

 

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