Thursday, September 26, 2013

Week Fifteen: Marathon? What Marathon?

Another Kid

Just Relaxin

Week of September 16, 2013:

Monday: Long powerwalk, 82 minutes

Tuesday: Evening run, 45 minutes total with 27 minutes running

Wednesday: Off (date night!)

Thursday: Evening walk, 30 minutes.

Friday: Off to Austin!

Saturday: Walked around a sweet little neighborhood in Austin with Paul

Sunday: Off (and preparing for the new week)

{Both estimated}  Total miles run/walked this week: 11.4. Total minutes: 157.

As I mentioned earlier this week, Paul and I were in Austin over the weekend.  It was a mini-vacation for us, and it was lovely.  While we did do some walking (a utilitarian walk to HEB for ingredients to make migas and a walk just to enjoy the pretty neighborhood in which we were staying), there was no marathon-level training that happened.  On Sunday, we made it back to College Station by about noon, and I spent the day puttering around my apartment, cooking, cleaning, and reading.  What I did not do was go for a three-hour-plus walk.

Friends, I am starting to freak out about how severely undertrained I may be am for the Detroit Marathon.

After mulling over the consequences of my own laziness, I think the worst-case scenario for the marathon is that I don’t finish. DNF.  Honestly, I can live with that.  There are worse things in life than trying to complete a marathon and not finishing.  I’m not self-centered enough to think that my not finishing a marathon is a tragedy.  Other consequences of attempting this marathon, DNF or not, are soreness and/or injury.  The soreness is basically a guarantee, so let’s just agree on that and move on.  Potential injury?  Hmm, I don’t know about that one.  I’m not very prone to athletic injuries, and I’ll be doing a mix of running and walking during the marathon.  It’s possible I’ll get injured, but I think not, unless I get an overuse injury.

On the plus side, I have trained in hell for the past nine weeks.  The weather is summertime Texas is legendary for a reason, and I think I’ve done all my “long” work-outs outside in the steamy sunshine.  My fingers are crossed that I will have a good performance on October 20th in part because I worked so hard in more severe conditions.  As my friend Tonya says, “Slay the summer so you can win the fall.”

And in the grand scheme of things, I will get out of this marathon experience what I put into it.  I want to cross that finish line, I really do.  Maybe I will cross it at five hours and thirty minutes or at six hours and twenty-nine minutes.  I’m okay with either scenario.  Finishing in five hours could happen—maybe!—but if it doesn’t, that’s okay too.  The truth is that I’ve struggled to commit to marathon training.  My life feels very full right now, between my job, my boyfriend, my home, my cat, my friends, and all the other bits and bobs that fill up my days.  I’m not really sure how other people carve out the time to train for marathons.  Maybe they don’t cook for themselves, or only they sleep six hours a day, or they are less stressed out by their jobs.  Maybe they are just better at managing time than I am!  Whatever the case may be, I stand in awe of them.  26.2 miles is a long distance to cover in one day, and it takes tremendous dedication to train for it.  More dedication than I have during this season of my life.

Whatever happens on October 20th will be okay.  I have already reaped rewards from this training cycle: getting/staying in shape during a Texas summer, learning how to powerwalk as a way of getting more outdoor time during hot days, successfully navigating the United States passport system (anyone want to go to Mexico with me this winter?), and better stress management through exercise as I started a new job.  It feels good right now to acknowledge that my marathon training has been a mixed experience.  But I wonder if that’s the case for everyone.  I’m probably not alone here.  So here’s to doing the best you can, wherever you are in your fitness and goals, and here’s to the Detroit Marathon, for better or for worse.  Fingers crossed that it’s for better!

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