Remember when I said this:
It’s great to finally feel the way I should at the beginning of a new training week – rested and ready to tackle everything Week 4 has to offer!
Yeah, Week 4 can suck it.
- Monday: 10 minute hip stretching / 50 side leg lifts each side / 2×1:00 plank
- Tuesday: 2 miles @ 11:46 – the winds from Hell / 3×1:00 plank
- Wednesday: Short walk around the neighborhood with the Huz / 3×1:00 plank
- Thursday: 5 miles @ 10:37 / 2×1:00 plank
- Friday: Rest
- Saturday: 3 mi – watchless / 3×1:00 plank
- Sunday: 10 mi @12:04
Weekly Running Total : 20 miles
It started with this on Tuesday…
2 ridiculously awful horrible no-good miles. I was going for 3, but my legs just felt dead – heavy, lethargic, and painfully fatigued. It didn’t help that although the temperature was in the 50s, the winds were gusting up to 25 mph. I was completely under dressed and freezing while running into the wind (way to stay safe, dummy!) and it felt a lot like walking the wrong way on a moving sidewalk. Ugh.
It was right then and there that I officially declared it s step back week – reduced mileage and NO speed. Really, it should have been a step back week from the beginning. My training schedule includes 3 weeks of building followed by 1 week of recovery. But for some silly reason, I scheduled 4 weeks of building before my first recovery week. That problem has been remedied.
Thankfully, I did have a decent run on Thursday. I didn’t pay much attention to pace, as I just wanted to run, and still hit a decent pace. In the last mile, the snow started falling and it was perfect – one of those little adventures that makes life perfect in the moment. A girl’s evening of delicious pizza and chatting about marathon training with Carrie completed a great day.
I also scored some new kicks his week, just in time for some snowy weekend runs. I’ve had my eyes peeled for a pair of shoes that could hold their own in the snow and could be used on the trails, when lo & behold – I ran across these beauties!
I took them for a spin on Saturday in about 4 inches of unplowed snow – 3 watchless miles, and I declared them awesome. My feet were toasty warm and very comfortable even while slogging through all that mess. My legs were definitely tired, but it’s hard to tell what’s normal and what’s due to all the snow.
Sunday was Long RunDay Sunday as usual. Carrie and I met up and set off on the Olentangy Trail, but it was really snowy and slushy, so we decided to go off trail – a Choose Your Own Adventure run. We cruised along past sweese (some weird goose-swan hybrid), through parking lots, and down a giant snowy hill to reconnect with the bike trail and found ourselves back at the cars at mile 4. We stretch, I dropped off a jacket and hit it again. Since we were already by campus, we did a loop around our alma mater…
During miles 4-9, we reminisced about our time in college. Although Carrie and I didn’t meet until this past summer, we were both Buckeyes and even lived in the same dorm at the same time! We should have met in college, so we kind of pretend that we did. Don’t judge.
Those middle miles were relatively uneventful, save for a bathroom and refueling break at good ole’ Mirror Lake. And then we hit mile 9. We had stopped at a light, and when we started running again, my right knee was supremely unhappy. It was so frustrating, to be so close to done and stopped short by my IT band just like I was two weeks ago. We finally made it back to the cars – I was very happy to be done, and Carrie regrouped for the final push of her Sunday half marathon. She is awesome. 13.1 miles in that crap? Ouch.
I felt so defeated – I arrived home cold, wet, and very disgruntled. Instead of stretching and icing like I knew I should, I plopped down on the couch, wallowing in the self pity of my slowest 10 miles ever. My IT band tightened up even more and I could barely get my butt up off the couch when it came time to crawl into bed. Ugh.
I woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning – total grump. I felt like a failure, so frustrated that I’m doing (almost) everything right, and my body still won’t cooperate. This morning, I woke up and opened the shades to a gorgeous day – the first in a long time. Part of me thought,” Oh what a lovely day!” and the rest of me felt like even the weather was mocking me with perfect running weather… in January. The issue really doesn’t even have to do with marathon training or hitting 4:30 in April – a goal that I may not reach this time around. The issue is that running is my go-to stress reliever, celebration, and feel better activity. I want to run regardless of what race is paid for and marked on the calendar, and I want to be healthy enough to continue running for the rest of my days. I know that in order for that to happen, I need to back off when my legs tell me I’m asking too much too soon. I’m sure many of you agree, but it’s very annoying to have the one thing you do when all else fails be the one thing that you can’t do for the time being.
So today instead of running, I walked. With a little distance from the whole situation, I see that it’s not the end of the world, and that I need to stop this “me vs. my body” mentality. My legs aren’t fighting me, they’re trying to tell me something.
That walk did wonders – not just for my perspective, but for my legs too. They feel so much better. I’ll still be taking some time off, but it’s nice for them to feel almost normal.
Week 5 of marathon training is going to be about more than chasing a 4:30 marathon time. It will be about giving my legs what they need so that someday, they can safely carry me through 26.2 miles many times over.
Week 5, let’s keep it simple.