When I first committed to training for the Eugene Marathon back in October of 2014, I wasn’t sure what to expect out of my marathon training. You see, I never really actually consistently “trained” for a race. I would say that even when I ran my sub-2 half-marathon, the training was haphazard. Every race I’ve registered for in the past, its training was approached with an “I will run when I feel like running” mentality. Thus, I was worried that kind of mentality would creep into my marathon training. Furthermore, I was afraid I would start making justifications for skipping or altering a run (too tired, legs hurt, rest is important, I don’t want to hate running) and would eventually deviate from the 20 week training plan. Surprisingly enough, I’ve found myself to be so dedicated to the program, that the thought of skipping a single run scares me. I feel like the kid in school who wants perfect attendance and will not allow a single factor to get in the way of it. This week was another week where I was completely dedicated and did not miss a single run.
Four recovery miles. They were slow, short, sweet and they got done.
Eight miles. On the treadmill. My metabolism is working harder than a desperate man at a club trying to make eye contact with anyone who breathes in order to make a move. I find myself indulging in foods throughout the day because I cannot seem to consume enough calories. Eggs, bread, avocados, turkey sausages, potatoes, oatmeal, cereal, peanut butter, pancakes, and so on. I am so glad we have a local grocery outlet that sells discounted food so that my food budget does not go overboard. I am craving an avocado sandwich right now as I type (I actually stopped and went to make one). There is a point to this blurb. Because of my insatiable appetite, I put off this run until close to the end of the day. Every time I thought about starting the eight miles, I felt like I just had not consumed enough calories to complete it. When I finally did complete the run, I immediately headed to the kitchen and consumed a granola bar before showering and changing into clean clothes to ingest the beef stew dinner that had been slow cooking in the crock pot.
Five miles on the treadmill. I failed to mention that after giving up on my Hoka shoes, I had to use an old, and I mean old, pair of running shoes to complete my runs. My Saucony Ride 4 helped me get through the training, and I was so grateful I had kept this old pair around. In fact, I have kept a majority of my worn out running shoes because I don’t like throwing them away. I am sure I am not the only person who does this. I have donated some shoes for good causes, but I have kept ones that were good to my feet (mostly Brooks). The problem with this really old pair of shoes I purchased back in 2011 is that the sole is worn out, and they are also stretched out from wearing them during my 47 pound weight pregnancy gain. Because I live in a small town where there are no running shoes within hundreds of miles, and because I did not make my decision to get a new pair of shoes until Sunday, I did not have enough time to drive the two hours (one way) necessary to purchase shoes. When I realized I would need a pair before Saturday morning’s sixteen mile run, I opted to purchase my shoes online. Needless to say, this run was not very smooth given the old pair of loyal shoes.
Six miles and it was also another one of those procrastination runs. I just kept putting it off, but not because of calorie concerns like Tuesday, but because I was SO OVER the piles of laundry sitting in a basket waiting to be folded and put away. It took almost three hours (not counting the interruptions of a rambunctious two-year-old) to fold and put away clothes, towels, and socks. I did not start my six miles until 7 pm and they were all on the treadmill. Dinner was so delicious once I was done: white rice, fried chicken thighs, green beans, and mashed potatoes!
Five slow easy miles on the treadmill wearing old worn out shoes. By the end of the day Friday, I knew I would most likely be running my sixteen miles in an old pair of running shoes because the pair I had purchased online had not arrived at this point.
Sixteen miles with an old pair of shoes. The plan was to run the first 8 miles at a comfortable pace, and the last 8 at Marathon Goal pace (9:52 is the pace for a 4:20 marathon). Yes, I was rather worried, not so much about the pace, but more about my feet. “No injuries” was all I could think of. Even if it meant I could not reach my marathon pace goal, I placed more value on the health of my feet. My friend Sarah ran twelve miles with me, so I ran the first four miles by myself. As is the norm, I started off sluggish, and picked up my pace once Sarah joined me. I consumed an huma gel on mile two, and on close to mile eight. Because I did not properly hydrate the day before (I need to get better about drinking water), I kept consuming water and fiddling with my Orange Mud water pack.
Around mile 13, with three more miles remaining, my ankles and feet started hurting. Even though I was hitting my target pace, I was extremely worried about my feet, and questioned whether I should push the last three miles or just take it easy. At this point in the run, the weather had warmed at least 15 degrees, so I stopped and took off my jacket and wrapped it around my waist. My friend Sarah looked strong, and I decided that I would push myself because my feet were going to hurt regardless of the pace. Figured it was better to get the three miles and the agony over with faster. I was so relieved once it was over, and so looking forward to icing my ankles and getting the new pair of shoes.
Weekly Mileage: 44
March Monthly Mileage Total: 44