Well, it was bound to happen. The pile of things I’ve been attempting to do at the same time kind of imploded on themselves, and I have been remiss at updating the blog. I’m going to be brief today, but I will fill you in on how things have been going (not great), and what my plans are going forward (keep running).
My last post was September 21st, and it had been not a great week. But bad weeks happen, and I wasn’t too worried. I knew I still had time. That week was much better, ran my five miles on Tuesday-Thursday, and on Saturday I participated in the Clarendon Day 5k race. My goal had been to get under 25 minutes (my previous PR had been 25:25). The race weather was perfect, and for those of you who aren’t familiar with the course, it is almost totally downhill. The race went wonderfully and I finished in 23:39, destroying my previous PR. I’m well aware that it’ll be hard to match that any time soon on a course that isn’t totally downhill, but I’m enjoying the PR! Helen, our store owner at Metro Run and Walk had scolded me and told me it was too late in marathon training to be doing speed like that, and as always, I should learn to listen to others.
The week after the race I got my runs in again – five miles Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. On Saturday I spent my entire day trying to get my house ready for my wedding, which was to be the following Saturday. And then on Sunday I was out the door bright and early with the plan of running 18-20. The first 13ish miles I had company and it was absolutely lovely. After they split off I was still enjoying the run, enjoying the mileage, and enjoying the beautiful Fall morning at Lake Accotink. And then I got to about 16 miles and everything went wrong. My legs completely cramped up. My head was pounding and I felt dizzy. I started walking. After a few minutes walk I tried to start jogging again and I just couldn’t do it. I walked out of the park and sat down at an elementary school where I rested until I was able to get a ride back to my car.
This was NOT how my last long run should have gone. And, I am sad to say, that was the last time I ran. And it was eight days ago. Two days ago, I married my best friend, and it was the most wonderful thing. The days leading up to the wedding were incredibly packed with things that HAD to happen, and trying to wake up even earlier to get in my runs seemed like a great way to end up sick or injured. In hindsight, having the peak mileage weeks coincide with the first few weeks of the school year AND my wedding was a very bad idea. But, I’m not throwing in the towel. I’m just adjusting.
Marine Corps Marathon is two weeks from yesterday. My new goal is 4:30. While I haven’t put in as many miles as would be ideal, and that isn’t the speed I was hoping for, it would still be a perfectly respectable showing, and would be beating my previous PR by over 20 minutes. As I sit here under my cuddly blanket on the couch next to my now husband, I’m looking out at the rain, and thinking it might not be a bad day to go shake out some miles. I’m going rogue, pretty much off all training plans, and just going to work on putting some miles on my legs, and remember to enjoy running, not stress about it. This Saturday I will be running the Baltimore Half Marathon with a friend. It will be his first half and the plan is nice and slow.
My training will not be ending with Marine Corps, however. I’m a crazy person and have decided that I just HAVE to run a 50k, because that’s the kind of thing I do. So I will have a very brief recovery time before bringing my mileage right back up to train for the Everglades Ultra in February. In the meantime, I’m staying focused and working on making sure I’m eating right and getting enough sleep to be prepared for Marine Corps, and we shall see what happens!
Until next week (because I will report back on the Baltimore Half!),