As of this morning, I’m officially in taper for my first (and likely only!) marathon. Less than 3 weeks until race day! Even better, despite the brutal winter conditions, this last peak week of training was one of the best weeks I’ve had this training cycle. Great note to end on! Now, I just need to stay injury free until race day. 🙂
This week called for two 5 mile runs and a 10 mile run during the week. Like I said last week, there’s just no way I can do ten miles on a weekday with my schedule and my pace, so I set 8 miles as my target instead. We had temps in the 5-10 degree range every day this week, with wind chills below that, but thankfully no ice so I was able to head out anyway. With lots of layers, I can handle super cold for less than an hour but longer than that gets into unsafe territory.
Wouldn’t those frosty eyelashes be a cool holiday party look? I’m super proud of how successful I was with my weekday runs despite the cold! Per the plan, I got in 5 miles Tuesday and 8 miles Wednesday. I was supposed to get 5 miles in Friday, but could only get in 3.5 miles before the ice showed up. I did at least get the last 1.5 miles as walking indoors since I couldn’t run outdoors. I think this was my best run of weekday runs all training cycle!
All week, I was nervous about the looming 20 mile run. This would be furthest I’ve ever run at one time and naturally, it would come up during the worst winter weather we’ve had all season.
This was what I was facing Sunday morning. Even for all of my layers, that was more than I could safely do outside for 5 hours, not to mention the ice. Know what that means? That means the gym and the treadmill. For 20 miles. Know what else? I did it! I got bored, but my legs could definitely do it and I finished confident that I could go another 6.2. It’s amazing what putting one foot in front of the other can do!
The worst part was that the treadmill kept stopping at random points. It is far less satisfying to finish 20 miles with 0.12 miles on the wrap up instead of the badass 20 miles I know I’d run. Fortunately, I was prepared for this possibility and snapped pics of every stop screen so I could keep track of the miles.
One perk of the treadmill was that it gave me an opportunity to test out my race clothes. I can pretty much guarantee that the temperatures in Florida are not going to be the single digits I’ve been running in here lately. Happily, other than occasionally tugging the legs down of my Wonder Woman Sparkle Skirt, I had no chafing and everything else worked well. I also ran with just water and my salted caramels gels, as I don’t want to carry my usual Nuun and know I won’t be drinking the Powerade on the course (stomach doesn’t like it). Everything worked like it should, with no significant aches or pains and today, I’m moving pretty normally. I think I might be ready!
Aside from great runs this week, I also feel like I’ve gotten enough major work/school related things done to really take a breath and enjoy the holidays. This lovely invitation played a large role in the holiday feeling:
Isn’t that awesome? Our gingerbread house was definitely less fancy than some of the others, but we had a great time together. After the gingerbread party, we went to see Santa and for the first time O wasn’t afraid. He left excited and awed! I also got my Christmas cards mailed, all of my packages mailed and all of my shopping done. I’m ready to relax and enjoy the holidays with my boys now!
My goals for this week are to keep up with my training runs and to eat for my marathon rather than falling too far down the cookie-hole. I have a bad habit of stopping running all together when I enter taper time and I have a hunch that would be a bad idea this time. This week, I’m supposed to run 5-8-4 and then 12 on the weekend. It’s going to warm up a bit into the 20-30s, so things should melt enough to do these safely outside. I’m also done with holiday parties (thankfully) and home for dinner every day this week, which should make it easier to make healthy choices to get things in better shape before the marathon.
I got my corral assignment this week (corral I), so I did the math and based on the usual corral release times, I’m going to have 7.5 hours to complete this. While I have zero time goal for this race (FINISHING=WINNING), my training runs have me completing 26.2 miles well within that time. I find that very reassuring. 🙂
This is feeling very real! After a good last week of training, I feel ready for this. The fact that the 20 mile run went well, just like the 16 and 18 before it, was reassurance that I really have trained for this. I really do have fitness beyond anything I’ve ever had before, even if lupus and weight gain have me slower than I’ve ever been before. I need to hold onto to this feeling of optimism as I’m sure I’ll be swamped with worries and doubts again over the next few weeks!
Thanks as always to Holly and Tricia for hosting our weekly wrap-up!
What’s the furthest you’ve ever run on the treadmill? I feel like I should get some kind of badge of honor for this one. 🙂