Well marathon training is really heating up which is one of the reasons I'm having a hard time finding the time and energy to update this blog. But have no fear, I have not quit. I'm still on track and ready to rock this thing.
I'll update my weeks in order. I will go bad news first and then good news. I contemplated updating in reverse order to try and bury week 12 and pretend it never happened, but alas, I need to be held accountable.
Week 12 = 4 miles. Yep, that is it folks. 4 measly miles. A million and one factors converged to make this my worst week of training ever. I won't go into all the details/excuses as there are too many to list and kind of depressing. Needless to say, it was a bad week and there is no justifying it.
Week 11 = Things didn't get much better in week 11. It was kind of a hangover week where I was emotionally exhausted and also caught a cold.. I managed 6 miles on Tuesday which was kind of mistake. I was in Omaha, NE and the dry air combined with my cold combined with the pressure from my flight caused me serious pain. I couldn't sleep the rest of the week because my nose and face felt on fire. Again, I chickened out on my other mid-week runs.
But, I got back on track shortly after getting home from the NE. I ran 4 miles on Friday and 15 on Saturday. And OH BOY, 15 was NOT pleasant.
My failures in the beginning of the week and the prior week really had me ill prepared to handle my first 15 miler. 14 miles was an absolute breeze compared to 15. The problem wasn't actually the run, it was the aftermath. I did the 15 in 2:39 which is a decent pace, but as soon as I stopped, my legs completely revolted against the rest of my body. I hobbled to my car and seriously did not know how I was going to drive home. I had no control over anything waist down. I couldn't walk to cool down or stretch. It's not that I didn't want to but I could not move my legs. I got home, kind of in a daze, and took a shower. I was feeling a little better so I decided to head out to Target to get a dress I had wanted to wear on Sunday at the Teddy Bear Tea. I got in the dressing room to try the dress on and my body shut down. I couldn't do anything. It took me 40 minutes to get the dress. I could barely walk to the check out line. I got home and got on the couch. I couldn't move. Ryan kept saying unhelpful things like "it's okay," "you did good," "you can do this." Okay, I know those don't sound like bad things to say, but in the moment it was not what I wanted to hear. To me it sounded like "toughen up," "it's not that bad," "stop complaining." So, I did the only thing left I knew to do, I started bawling. It just hurt so bad and I couldn't move. It may have been the worst pain I had ever felt and to know I intentionally inflicted it upon myself made it that much worse. I couldn't imagine willingly volunteering to run 16, 18, 20, and 26.2 miles in the future. I was ready to say, "It's just not worth it!" But, it is not in me to give up so I knew I just had to grin and bear it.
The next few days were not fun. I could barely walk and stairs were out of the question. I had a fun time at the Teddy Bear Tea the next day, but being in heels was pretty painful. I drank champagne and tried to not move too much.
Luckily, things got better.
Week 10 = Merry Christmas and cheers to an AWESOME training week. I ran a total of 32 miles and more importantly survived and felt great after 16 miles on Saturday. The week went as follows: 4 miles on Tuesday, 6 on Wednesday, 3 on Thursday, 16 on Saturday, and 3 on Sunday. Saturday's 16 miler went way better than expected. I finished in 2:48 which is right on my 10:30 pace and more importantly I didn't feel like cutting off my legs when I was finished. After my horrible 15 mile experience, I read up and asked around and learned that a key element was missing from my training the ICE BATH. So scary but so necessary. So, Ryan and my mom were prepared when I got home from the run. (We were staying at the 'rents house to celebrate the family Christmas). I got in the tub of cold water and Ryan started adding the ice. I won't lie folks, it SUCKED. My feet felt like they were going to freeze off. It was very painful, but Ryan was a good hubby and held my hands and talked me through it. I stayed in for a mere 10 minutes but boy what a difference it made. I felt great after the run and even managed to run a slow 3 miles on Sunday. GREAT WEEK!
Week 9 = Happy New Year and another AWESOME week! That is right. I managed to string two good training weeks together in a row. The key I believe is that there was no work travel because of the holidays so I got to do things on my own terms. No cruddy hotel treadmills! The week went as follows: 4 miles on Tuesday, 7 on Wednesday, 4 on Thursday and 18 on Saturday. The 18 miler went as well as can be expected. What can I say, it was tough. 18 miles is a long way to run and my legs were not thrilled with me upon the finish, but I did it and survived and at this point, that is all I can ask for. At mile 15 I ran into a baby deer frolicking around in the brush. She looked like she was having some fun. It scared me and I scared it. At first I became concerned that a momma deer would jump out of the woods and attack me, but then I thought about it and realized death by momma deer sounded like more fun than running the last three miles. But, alas, there was no momma deer to attack me which meant I was forced to finish and finish I did in the miraculous time of 3:08. Right on pace!!! The next few hours were not pretty, but I managed 5 minutes in an ice bath and woke up Sunday feeling better.
So, ladies and gentleman, there are only 8 short weeks left until this marathon. Can you believe we are in the single digits!?!?!?! I have a training race on January 17th. It is a 25k (which converts to 15.5 miles for you non-runners). I like to call it a 25k and not a 15 miler, because thinking of running 15 miles brings up very unpleasant emotions. Anyways, the end is near and I can't wait to get this over with....I mean run this marathon and do a great job!!