Monday, November 27, 2006

Final Week

I finished the week off with 5 miles yesterday afternoon, though in retrospect I should have just taken it off. I had been resting on the couch with the timer set for 20 minutes after the rest of the family had left for the grocery store, and in that time I had managed to fall into a deep sleep when the watch beeped. A race, two trips to Phoenix and back and and my last marathon pace workout had worn on me over the weekend, and I should have taken feeling sleepy as a sign to bag the run. Still, five miles would make it an even 50 for the week, so I pulled on my running clothes and headed out. While the weather was great, my body felt like I was still asleep on the couch. The first mile was a struggle at nearly 7:30 pace, and for most of the second mile I contemplated just heading back home. As the run progressed I started to feel better, but by the end of it I was glad to be done.

I think everyone has at least one run like this towards the end of a marathon preparation, where running over a minute slower per mile than marathon pace actually feels tough and clouds of doubt over what exactly goal pace should be roll in. I chalk it up to nervous energy, and hopefully a dreadfully ordinary week at home will put everything back to right. Normal diet, normal work hours and hopefully more than the normal amount of sleep are all planned.

Today I was back to my old self after crawling into bed at 8:30 last evening. Getting a solid 8 hours of sleep at home after the previous night on the torture-bed at my parents' place was a relief, and the 8 miles spent this morning on the "slow down" loop was similarly restful. Instead of feeling like I'd lost fitness (which was a thought yesterday), I felt like I was finally soaking up the training I've been through over the last 17 weeks.

Training: Today, 8 miles, 55:12, 6:54 pace
Yesterday, 5 sad miles, 36:15, 7:14 pace
Miles for the week: 50 in 7 sessions


Andrew said...

I know about sad miles too. Good luck this weekend. The great thing about marathons - no surprises. There's no reason why you can't run your selected pace given the indicators from your training.

And I always think this: the worse case? I only run 24 miles at this pace and suffer the last two. Now how bad is that? It isn't like we haven't done that before.

But I like your plan of kicking it up a gear closer to the end. Where do you think you'll do this? I was going to wait for 18 but foolishly started in at 16 and lost my steam at 22. On the other hand, I was getting a little stale and I needed to do *something*.

Keep resting.

Phil said...

You deserve a rest. What a weekend you had. A great performance in a tough 5K (just loved the Peter Pan - I can fly, I can fly, I can fly - picture of you jumping over the water hazard) followed by a fantastic MP workout. All this during a week where the outside pressures associated with Thanksgiving can crush mere mortals.

Get some more rest, finish your taper and go show everyone how a marathon is suppose to be run.

Best of luck this week.

Anonymous said...

It's hard to get past that "dark, antzy" feeling right before a big race when you are tapering. You might try reviewing your log to remind you of all of the great workouts you had leading up. Or try reading an insirational running book or story to get you in a positive mindset. All of the physical work has already been done. Everything from here out than can influence your race...for better or between your ears.

Good luck.

bapp said...

I completely understand your run filled with clouds of doubt. Seemed like I had weeks of thunderstorms of doubts during my recent taper. Enjoyed following you through your training for this marathon. Good luck this weekend. May the clouds part and the rays of success shine on you during the race.