I’m someone who breaks big and hard things down into percentages and fractions. It started in high school with guarding crowded open swims and it continues with long runs today. This week every 3 km was 10% of the total and after 6 km I only had to do what I just did 4 more times. Using that logic I’m 75% done this training cycle! That means only a third of what I’ve already done left to go. At that point in a long run I’m pretty confident that this will work out and starting to feel like I’ve accomplished something. Back in May when this all started let me tell you I didn’t envision this moment ever really coming and yet here we are. Of course something could still go off the rails but it looks like I really will be doing this, and I’m excited! The people around me are starting to get really excited too. My thoughts have shifted from “I don’t know how it will go but I’m going to try” to “I’ve got this 20 mile run locked down and most people who run 20 go on to run 26.2!” So I guess you can say this week made me feel optimistic.
Tuesday 8k: I ran after work on Tuesday in that section of beach trail I’ve been raving about for weeks now. It’s quickly becoming my favorite spot. It was a warm night so I didn’t even bother taking a shirt with me. When I’m not training I really like to run about 7 or 8k so this distance is really nice to be back to on the regular. And once this is all over I’m happy to have a new route to go to for it. This might be the best present marathon training has brought me yet this year. At the moment big portions of the trail along the beach have a lot of vegetation crowding the trail and it will be a lot easier in the late fall and early spring so I’m excited about that!
Friday 8k: When I leave my house I can either turn one way and follow the road along the open ocean where it’s a lot more breezy and cool or ‘into town’ where it’s usually very calm and a few degrees warmer. So for a long time now I’ve been headed out along the coast. It actually cooled off here a lot this week so I got to head the other way for the first time in a long time. I also got to do some mushroom related intel on this route. I’ve been working with honey for the last 3+ weeks and today was the first day back on my own. I finished a job I’ve been dreading a little bit so that felt pretty good. I got home before honey and headed out. It was a good run and these days I don’t have a lot to say about an 8k. When I got home honey was introducing himself to the new neighbors so I headed over too. They seem like sweet people and they also had a surprise wedding!
Saturday 29k: I gotta say I love my people that support me in these crazy time consuming adventures. Honey was like I cleared the day since this seems like a perfect day for a long run which kinda made me do it and not put it off for another day. He also let me sleep in a bit. I took the truck and stashed my bottles and raisins at my stepson’s house and he gave me a big good luck and a big hug before I headed out which was awesome! Our house is one of the most open spots around so it was very breezy and I took my arm warmers with me and wore my favorite running tee. I figured that way I’d have all sorts of options outfit wise. It was cool (15c) and sunny, windy and cloudy at certain points on my almost 4 hour journey and I wore all the possible configurations of my outfit. Shirt rolled up, arm warmers on and off and sleeves rolled up. Actually the variability in the weather kinda kept it interesting. Since I’ll have three days to choose from for race day I made a note that this was pretty much a perfect recipe to pick if I could. I also wore my new sneakers I plan to wear today and my right one felt pinch-y for a while but at 15k it sort of broke in. The socks I choose for today are definitely out of the question though.
There is a BAD series of turns on my route and this run took me though those for the first time this year. I’ve previously run them and they are un-runable safely, at least for me. So I have to cross up onto the trail and then back down which is easy but I always miss the ‘easy way’ up. I did today too but I found it on the way back no problem. So we can now officially check this off the list of race day anxieties.
I put it down to the cooler weather but I was faster than I have been in weeks by at least 15 seconds per km and I felt strong. It’s not to say I didn’t have a few aches and pains but the whole thing felt a lot easier than it has in the last month or so. In the last 10k the wind really picked up which can be challenging. At one point I started to feel a little dizzy but it was easily fixed with some extra fuel. If I struggle with that on race day I plan on shifting to the trail. It might end up though that when I get home I have to keep going for a bit because I’m not quite there yet in terms of distance. That would low key suck a bit. This run made me feel like tackling 32km in two weeks will be no big deal. Even though it was hard this long run made me feel confident which was amazing. Also amazing was coming home to salmon and rice!
Sunday 10k walk: After my long run I wore my compression pants honey got me for my birthday which I do think helped. But I was sore the next day and one of my knees was really, really tight. So I headed out for a few hours to pick mushrooms. I listened to the whole podcast ‘a death in crypto land’ which was great. I got a full grocery bag of chanterelles but took some crazy pictures of other mushrooms I know nothing about too. I wore my boat shoes which was a mistake and my knee was pretty sore after. I’m counting this as my 6.5k this week and depending on how I’m feeling I might shorten up a run this week too.
This week I knew I might skip a run which I sort of did with my walk. This week was really the one that started to give me some confidence for the big day. I have to tell you that feels pretty great. You can check out the plan I’m using here. If you want a sneak peak of my training follow me on instagram! Are you training for a marathon this year? How is your training going so far? Leave it in the comments below!
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