Let me start off by saying, after Reality and Doubt came to visit me this week I have revised my original goal of 1:59 to one of 2:10. Suffice it to say, I will be ECSTATIC if I do get the 1:59…but I have to face reality. The reality is that this is pretty fast (for me anyway) for a long period of time. I have been keeping up with my plan. Following it to the Tee. If nothing else, I am a rule-follower. It’s just in my DNA. I don’t break rules.
The plan I am on is based on a goal of breaking 2:00 so I am keeping those paces just because I am comfortable with them and it will make me faster. Obviously, I will PR and that is always a good thing. My first half was 2:40. I think I was more trotting than running. I was scared to death of not being able to finish because the 12 miler I had ran 2 weeks before had hurt my knee so bad that I did not run period in the 2 weeks leading up to the race. I got out and tried to run 4 miles one day and didn’t make it 1 before I was in excrutiating pain and had to walk back to my condo.
Training has been going great so far. I am having a hard time trusting the process though. Everything I read and everything I’m told is that I should run my long runs at an 11:00 minute mile, or 2 minutes slower than my HMP. I can’t do that. I am told that the long runs are just so you have time on your feet and that on race day is when you really get it. I feel like that I would get lazy and my body would get used to the pace, therefore want to always be at that pace. I know that this is what I should do and maybe I will this week for my 10-11 miler. We shall see.
Monday, my rest/stretching day, was soooo long! I was restless. I got home from work and immediately wanted to go run. It had been a much longer break than I usually have for runs. I, obviously, need a life. (I do have friends but they are all at work at night.)
Tuesday was an easy 4 mile run. It was so slow and easy that I was b-o-r-e-d. As I said, I am following the plan. This was the pace it said to run. And again, hard time trusting the process. I guess I have to realize that race day is when I should reach my peak, not before then. Until that day, I need to treat my legs well. Let them recover and rest after a hard or long workout. I guess it’s the same in any sort of competition. When I competed in cheer my coach always said we needed to peak at competition. It didn’t matter if we weren’t hitting everything perfectly before. It mattered if we hit it perfectly there…that is a lot of pressure to put on one day. That’s why we train though.
Tonight I did 800s x 4. I increased my pace by .1mph with each 800. It felt good. I felt strong and, surprisingly, fast.
I had recently picked up my Runners World magazine to read it when I finally had the time. There were two extremely interesting articles I found this week. (They are all interesting to me, but I won’t bore you.) One was about how the Biggest Loser contestants train for a marathon. This was very inspirational to me, as is the show. If these people can train for a marathon there is absolutely no reason why I can’t. I will run one this year.
The next was an article on mantras. The Sanskrit word actually means “instrument for thinking”. It basically says that while running you should reinforce positive thoughts in your head. I’ve already been doing this so I was excited. When I am really pushing in a speed workout I will yell things (in my head), usually only one word but with the same meaning – Find the will. Find the strength. I will try to make up more to get me through the 2 hours of the half-marathon. Any suggestions will be taken. One of my favorites from RW was “One mile at a time” for a marathon. Simple, yet, to the point. I can use that for a half. It’s important to not become overwhelmed by the task at hand and to just be in the present.
I already find myself doing math equations every time I run. I know, dork, huh? Well, I will separate my runs into fractions and pie charts. (If any teachers are reading, you should appreciate this.) For example, when I hit three miles in my nine mile run, I thought 1/3 of the way through. Only 2/3 to go! I will also try to calculate pace and finish time. It is hard to do while running but just kinda comes natural to me…always with the numbers.
The countdown continues….4 weeks and 3 days.