The last week of training I feel was my best week of training yet! Not because I ran my best run, but because I learned a lot about what I can and cannot do. I ran over 40 miles total last week; this is almost double what I use to run to train for the half. I feel like I can do it again this week but I need to be a bit smarter about the way I do it in order to be more successful on my longer runs.
I began the week slow with a 5 mile run on Monday. I do not plan to ever run less than 4 or 5 miles while training from here on out unless I am doing hill training, and even then, I feel like 5 miles is a good distance for that. This is just something I am doing personally, this was not in my training. I feel like in order to get in as many miles as I need, running less than 5 is not productive. I have stopped worrying about speed as much and just focusing on the number of miles I go. I run as fast as I can without tiring too much. Usually that is around 9 minute miles for shorter runs. As the week progresses and I run more miles, obviously my legs get tired, so my speed decreases. I still am doing sprint work and hill work to increase my overall speed.
Here is where I went very wrong in my training last week…
Thursday morning I got up and ran 3 miles. I was planning on doing some strengthening work with a friend that night, so I thought I better get a couple miles in before my planned big run on . My friend and I decided to run that night instead of lifting which I thought would be no problem and I did get through that 6 mile run just fine. Keep in mind this is all after hill training I did on Wednesday evening with my hubby. So I got done with the 6 miles, got home around 8, was in bed by probably 10:30, setting my alarm for 4 A.M. for an early 13-mile run. The first few miles of my long run I felt strong. I did it with a group of girls who pace faster than me but I felt up to the challenge. I made it to about mile 8 or 9 and that is when I went down hill. My legs just gave out and I have NEVER in my 6 months of running felt this way. You go through mind battles all the time while running and I am used to that. Your mind tries to tell you that you are tired and need to walk. I can get through those just fine. This was a body battle and it was tough. I hurt all over and felt like I was going to throw up. The girls dragged me on and I continued running and made it to 13 miles, but I seriously crawled up to my room when I got home, laid on the floor, and cried. LOL! It was horrible but in a great way. (If that makes sense). I talked to some experienced runners that day and they said this is actually one of the best things that could have happened to me, because this is what will happen during my marathon at about mile 20 to 23. My legs will go out and I will have to find some way to keep going and make it to the finish line. They said the more this happens throughout my training the better. The trick is to learn how to run when you feel (both body and mind), when you have nothing left.
After this 13 miles it brought up a question from my husband that at first made me mad but after I thought about realized it made a lot of sense to ask, “if I tire that bad after 13 miles, do I think I can really run 26?” A half marathon is one thing, but to run non stop for over 4 hours almost seems impossible to me at this point and I think I need to start preparing now for the chance that I might not be able to finish without walking. I will do my complete best, but there might be a chance I cannot make it, and I think I will be fine with that. At the time I run my race I will have been running for about 9 months total so I think to even attempt it will be an accomplishment. Do not get me wrong, I will finish the race, even if I have to crawl across the finish line.
After the 13 miles, chad and I ran a 5k race together on Saturday morning and it was so much fun. We had planned to stay together, but I would never want to hold anyone back from doing their best at anything! So he ran ahead and I was totally ok with that. My legs were tired and I struggled through it, but I still finished a little over 26 minutes and my last 5k race I ran at almost 29 minutes so this was a big improvement for me. I finished 8th in my age group so I was pleased. We both agreed he needs to train more. With little training he finished 6th out of his age group with a time of 23 minutes so I think if he got out there and ran more he could be really good! And he LOVES to do it. It will take a little strategy from both of us trying to get his runs in, but we feel we can do it. We also have been doing strength training together.
Now to hit on that negative person in my life that made a bad comment about me in a two piece swimsuit, I am pleased to say I got right back out there in my two piece this weekend at the pool with full confidence. It took some time to get over it, but then I realized that if I let every negative comment someone makes get to me I am going to live a pretty miserable life. I actually had someone who read my blog stop me at the pool on Saturday and tell me that I looked so good, and she was so proud of me for getting back out there. On my next blog post I am going to take a picture of me in a swimsuit. By no means do I have a perfect body, but I think it is sad that 5’9, 140 pounds (yes that is my weight), is considered fat to some people. Sad to say I am raising my kids in such a world. But I am staying positive and remembering where I came from, and I have come a long way! We are all perfect in God’s eyes and that is how we should see each other. Never again will I ever judge someone, I have been there and it hurts.
That is some advice I have for anyone trying to lose weight, get into shape, change their lifestyle. You cannot compare yourself to others, there is no point. Compare yourself to you, to where you have been and where you are now. Be proud of the progress you have made. I have posted a picture below of me at my worst. This is probably a time in my life when I weighed the most, and I was miserable. I have come so far and I am not stopping! No matter what people say!
So training continues, growing continues, learning continues, and life continues. Every run gets me further to my goal, and every prayer gets me closer to God!
Thanks for reading everyone and…