I know, I know. I really don't talk about it much (#eyeroll #sarcasm).
|This is not my first marathon...but I may be acting like it is
Surprisingly, I'm not feeling the 26.2-training irritability this go-round.
I remember training for my first marathon (Quad Cities Marathon ), three years ago. I followed a Hal Higdon plan for intermediate runners. Although the training runs went well, it was a whole new ball game for me. I had confidence in my ability, but I still had a great deal of trepidation as to what would happen on race day. Also, I trained entirely on my own. I had lots of support from well-meaning friends and family (and tons of virtual cheerleaders from many online friends who also were embarking on their first marathons as well). Having never run (or trained for) a race of that magnitude was exciting, but a bit unnerving as well.
|Quad Cities Marathon...Sept. 22, 2013
|IMT Des Moines Marathon...Oct. 19, 2014
|Grandma's Marathon...June 20, 2015
|Christmas in July 6-Hour....July 18, 2015
|Christmas in July 12-Hour...July 16, 2016
Fast forward to right now.....I'm less than 6-weeks out from Route 66 Marathon (Nov. 20 in Tulsa, OK). I'm smack dab in the middle of the high-mileage part of the training, with only a few weeks until I hit the taper! And, knock on wood, I have nothing to be irritable about. I'm running the highest mileage I've ever done...weekly and monthly. My aches and pains have been at the absolute minimum. And, I'm doing the most speed work ever attempted...and I'm kind of enjoying the challenge of it. What's happening to me?!?!?!
I think I had solid training plans for all of these previous marathons, but there were a lot of outside forces that did not play to my advantage. There were some missed long runs (due to last-minute travel), scaled-back mileage (to give the aches and pains some down time), and not much speed work (for fear of aggravating the existing aches and pains).
What's different this time? First and foremost, I believe, is the addition of a coach. There are many things I'm doing that I've never done before (extra mileage, consistent speed work, and daily PT)...and I'm surviving! I have been blessed with near-perfect weather for most of my training runs...I've done one run on the 'mill, and it was more as an experiment than necessity. Also, I'm doing most of my runs in the early morning hours....which means they are getting done (and not procrastinated, dreaded, or forgotten). I still need to work on my sleep, but that is a constant work-in-progress (not just during training).
So, should I feel guilty for the lack of irritability? Or just enjoy the ride?
Have you ever had a rough & tough training cycle, and were pleasantly surprised on race day?
I'm linking with Deb for the Wednesday Word link-up....and today's word? Irritability (you probably saw that one coming). Also, I'm linking with Susie, Debbie, Rachel and Lora for the Running Coaches Corner link-up. Lots of great blogs and lots of great reading await you!