April showers bring May marathons.
Based upon my (almost non-existent) marathon training recaps from the past couple weeks, especially my last recap, it appears as if I’ve fallen off the training wagon. Well, I have. Sort of. The blog post recap wagon. Rest assured, I’ve been running away, I just have not blogged about it. Shame on me. But I suppose that’s what happens when you have a busy, full-time job, commute, life obligations and crazy miles to put in. Plus, I tweeted about running, so that counts, right? 🙂
Also, a little birdie blog reader (ahem, Dave), told me that these recaps are boring and include too many technical details. Point taken. But I did that to keep myself accountable and have something to read back so I can determine good and bad weeks to help my training. So without further ado, here’s a quick recap of the last two weeks (lazy putting two weeks into one recap, I know), then some fun motivational stuff so Dave can enjoy my blog again (in case you’re wondering, that would be my boyfriend).
Week 13: 20-MILER WEEK!
Week 12 had me all kinds of angry. I just was not into running. So my running buddy Autumn and I declared Week 13 “No negative talk week,” and it actually worked! We got excited about our 20-miler. After all, if you’re not excited to run the second-most-important-run of your marathon training, how are you going to get through it? Or run 26.2 miles? So we got up early, early (my alarm went off at 4:30), and were downtown and ready to run by 6:30, finished well before 10:30. What a difference from the previous week. I cannot encourage other runners enough to get their long runs in EARLY on the weekends. Something I didn’t do enough over the last 14 weeks. It’s cooler, quieter, less congested, and just easier. Plus, most races take place early in the morning so it puts you in that mindset.
Another huge game-changer this week was our water belts. Again, if you’re serious about running, and are putting in more than 10 miles during a run, these are awesome. We got these Nathan water belts. These were quite the gem since we had our water (and Gatorade) on us so we didn’t have to stop for water and had hydration at our disposal. Here’s all the snacks I packed for our trek:
I packed lots of liquids, plus post-run goodies to replicate what regular races give out after.
I definitely hit a wall at 16, but my trick was I literally belted out Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing” as I ran. No, really. I’m glad no one was really around, but I passed by so many houses SOMEONE had to have heard me. I didn’t care though because it helped. My goal for marathon day is to maintain my pace as much as possible. I have a tendency to get slow the second half. It should be reversed. Total time = 3:38:32 (Garmin said 21 miles but since it’s sometimes a bit slower than race time, I gave myself 1 more mile. That will help mentally on race day, too).
Week 14: Taper time begins.
Ask me last year if I thought 10 miles meant tapering, and I’d of laughed in your face. This year, 10 miles feels something like a breeze. It’s amazing how your body adapts. On the contrary, ask me this July to run 10 miles and again, I’ll laugh in your face. This time because I will not be in marathon shape! I’m planning on taking my running down a notch for the summer. And to drink pina coladas poolside. But that’s neither here nor there.
Let’s talk motivation.
Since week 1, I wondered how I’d get through my training. The physical is hard enough with my aches and pains (and now blisters). However, I’ve made it. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. I have a few more short runs to go, then it’s D-Day. There have been quite a few days where the last thing I want to do is run, even days when I question my decision to train for a marathon and give up. But then I think to myself, “How many people can say they’ve ran a marathon?” Not too many. I am not the most in-shape person ever by any stretch. And I am not fast. But I ran 20 miles, (only stopping about 4 minutes total to walk) and I’m confident I’ll run the whole thing. And that visualizing of running a marathon gets me PUMPED. Or “jazzed” as Autumn likes to say. Here’s a few other things that get me pazzed (new word, combination of the two, make that Twitter trend):
Listen to the words. And that intro, epic.
Again, it’s all about the lyrics. That beginning part and the chorus is too good. Anything Eminem gets me pumped up, really.
Call me corny, but I LOVE THIS SONG. Last year at the half marathon I crossed the finish line to it. Plus, Pittsburgh is in the beginning of it, so I mean that gives it much credibility.
Ah yes, the song I belted. Honestly, whatever works to get you through a long run, even if it means singing out loud. Just don’t annoy people running next to you. Does anyone else think of Lauren and Stephen a la Laguna Beach when they hear this song? No, just me?
This song used to be my pump up song for college lacrosse games. It still resonates with me and makes me think of running down the field, scoring goals…and parties afterwards.
There’s many more songs that get me pumped. Visit my playlists page to check them out. I’ll be sharing my marathon playlist after the fact.
Have Netflix or Hulu? Do yourself a favor and watch Spirit of the Marathon. You’ll root for the people along the way (and some may even annoy you).
While you’re on Netflix, get some episodes of the Biggest Loser. Their marathon running is pretty inspirational.
How can you not watch the original Rocky training montage and NOT feel motivated? It’s so amazing, YouTube won’t even let me embed it. Click here to watch the glory. Watch the entire movie, too. Especially when he tries the run the first time and fails. Awesome. Or just watch any of the epic 80s training montages from any Rocky movie. Oh yes.
Finally, one of my all-time favorite movies, Forrest Gump, has some of the best running scenes ever. From “Run, Forrest, Run!” to when he was a college football player to when he decided to just run across the country and back. “I was running.” Plus that movie has some good tunes. Watch this scene, for no particular reason.
For the ladies
I always loved this Nike ad from the 90s. What gets me motivated is thinking about how women were at one time not allowed to play sports (among other things). And I certainly love the story of Kathrine Switzer
Read the full story, “The Girl Who Started It All,” on Runner’s World.
If all else fails, do a Pinterest search of motivational running quotes. There’s some good ones there, like this: