Marathon 26.2


Sunday, March 22, 2015

First Marathon Training...thoughts

I have been comprehensive for a while about my upcoming marathon, my first marathon!!! I picked this marathon because at the time it was the one closest to home (ok still at a 5-6 hour drive), small but established race and a beautiful scenic route. Upon further research, the course is extremely tough course with evelation of +-1400 feet! Yikes. I think my comprehension increased even further after running my last (hilly) half marathon. Looking around at marathon schedules, I recently found an inaugural race closer to home. It would be a 2 hour drive with rolling hills vs.running up a mountain. Again, I found myself at the same crossroads as to which race to do like my first half marathon. After much debate, I decided to stay with my original plan. After all, I had already paid my entry fee! For a week, I felt good about sticking to my plan...but yet there was still that nagging doubt in the back of my head. After last week's long run of approx. 19 miles, all the doubts came creeping in. Was I making the right decision? After all, running 26.2 is hard. Do I want to make it even harder by running a super tough course? I believe I could do it but will I have a good experience? Will I finished before the cut off time? Am I setting myself up for failure? Poor hubby, had to hear once again about my doubts. He is good like that, listening with patience and always, a voice of reason. So once again, I am changing my plans. I have decided to run the marathon closer to home. I have paid for my entry fee and the new hotel reservation is made. I am feeling much more at ease and I know this is the best choice for me. I can go into this marathon with a more relaxed mind set. Just run this marathon to complete it (hey, course is open for 8 hours)!!! It's point to point which I like...I like the unknown instead of dreading "that hill" on the way back and best of all, it's only about a 2 hour drive. On top of that I have another week more to train. This is the winner. I know the other marathon will be added to my bucket list. When I become more confident at running marathons, I know I will want to tackle that mountain and conquer it!

I am still trying to tweek my diet, for optional performance. I have been feeling more tired lately and low energy. I am trying to add more carbs, yeah pasta to keep my energy level up during training runs. I still have to decide if I want to carry any electrolyte or water on my run. I have however, found what works for me in terms of fueling during a race, (GU) is best. It's all still so new! Surprisingly, several of the halfs I did, I did not bring any fuel or water. I found that I did not need it and the water stops along the way was sufficient to finish the race. (Everyone is different so find what works best for you and stick with it during race day).

 With Hubby's insane work schedule, I have had almost no free time.  I am soooo looking forward to some me time! I am ready to start a knitting project, go shopping, running (without pressing for time)!!! I can't really complain too much though....Life IS good.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

My 5th Half-Marathon Completed

Yesterday, I ran in a half marathon.  This was the 5th half marathon I completed since September.  I first embarked on my half marathon training in June after completing a 10k.

The past 2 half marathon races have been great races.  I went into the races feeling very calm and have done well in both races.  I must admit that I have gotten too relax in my training routine because I got too comfortable.  I have been keeping up with the "running" part but everything else I neglected.  Running a race also requires mental training.  I have been neglecting that along with being too relaxed on my vitamin/supplement and getting acupuncture treatments for my injured Achilles.  (Not everyone requires the last part but for me it is a vital part to keeping me healthy).

I have been comprehensive about this upcoming race.  It is a small semi-local race.  It is a Run for Christ series and I have enjoyed running these races.  (They are small races but well organized).  My comprehension about running this race is that 1/3 of the race has hills, lots of hills.  Ugh!  Also my last long training run of 3 hours of approx 18 miles was the toughest run ever (or so it seems).  Anyways, I have not been running my best these past few weeks.

On race day, packet pick up was a breeze. At 8:30, I was lined up at the start line (4 mile, 8 mile and half all started at the same time). I did not warm up or stretch a lot before hand so I was a bit stiff for the first 1/2 mile.  The first 2 miles went okay and at miles 3 to 4 it was hilly. Mile 6 and 7 were challenging with even more hills.  Around mile 7 was the turn around and I was not looking forward to the (more) hills on the second half of the race.  I regret not taking more walk breaks during the first half of the race because I found the second half of the race to be very challenging.  I didn't have as much energy and I felt I ran at a much slower pace.  I just wanted to be done with the race!  I did however, kicked it in on the last 50 yards.  Overall, my time was about 8 minutes slower than my previous 2 races.

I'm glad I did the race.  It is a good experience for the marathon I am training for in May.  There will be lots of hills!  Next time, I need to stick to my plan, that means walk breaks, at least stop for water at every water station ~ every 2 miles. Don't let my ego get in the way, and run smarter.  Stick to my training regime, all aspect of it!

That's it, keep up my training and keep prepare for my marathon in May!!!!