There are twenty-one weeks until the Eugene Marathon. This week marked the first week of Marathon Training for me. I’ve decided that I’m going to have a mantra during my training: Stick to the Plan
The truth of the matter is, I’m notorious for skipping, altering, or winging runs. This was especially true when I was working full-time and or single-parenting during my past three marathon trainings (my husband was deployed during my first marathon). This time around, I have the privilege of staying home with my two-year-old daughter while marathon training, so I don’t have to deal with the stressors of having to make it to work in the mornings at a specified time. Mind you, mornings are still chaotic in our household due to a ten-year-old who has no concept of time and in need of constant reminders from yours truly to “move faster.” I’m digressing though. “Sticking to the plan” is of utmost importance if I want to arrive at the finish line feeling prepared. In all of my previous three marathons, I’ve arrived feeling like I had mediocre training, and it is not a feeling I want to have this time around. Thus, every time I want to “skip” a run due to the weather (winter training is tough) “alter” a run due to my moods (sometimes I’m in a funk) or make-up my own run (because I skipped a run due to the weather or from being in a funk), I will tell myself, “Stick to the plan.”
Run Faster was a book I ordered this past Summer, and it includes various marathon training plans. I’m going with the beginners marathon plan, mostly because I’ve not logged enough miles to begin at the other two levels. Levels Two and Three’s training plans start with a twelve-mile long run, which would have worked for me had it not been for plantar fasciitis. The Level One training plan is 20 weeks long and it includes both a 22 and 23 mile long run (gulp). The first five weeks of the training plan consist of running four days out of the week, cross-training two days (I’m doing Crossfit), and resting one day of the week. The remaining weeks are five running days with two cross-training days. Some of the runs look intimidating, but then again, 26.2 miles are not supposed to be a walk in the park.
First Long Run
Twenty one more weeks to go, and my first run is in the history books. Miles 1 and 2 were under 10 minute miles, miles 3 and 4 were sub-9, and the last mile was in the very low 8’s. It was definitely a strong run, and this first week rekindled my love for running once again. Let’s see how feel ten weeks from now though? For now, I am celebrating my first successful long run, recognizing there will be some tough days ahead, and embracing the highs and lows that come with marathon training. Here’s to “Sticking to the Plan.”
Do you follow your training plans to a T, or are you “flexible” when it comes to your training schedule? What training plan do you use?