26 Before 26, Running

Marathon Training, Week Eight

I am officially more than halfway through my training. While a part of me rejoices at that fact, the greater part of me (and perhaps the wiser part) is starting to freak out a little–it’s starting to wonder if I will really be ready for a 26.2 mile race in less than two short months. But on we trek, in the wind and in the snow and in the freezing rain.

This week marked the first full week of our new training program. It also marked the first time that I’ve run the distance of a half-marathon. Normally I would probably be super proud of that fact, but I’m not. You see, last Saturday I was supposed to run 15 miles. Early Saturday morning, Matt and I piled into the Mazda and mapped out a perfect 15-mile loop (because neither one of us wanted to run our usual 7.5-mile route twice). As we left the house to go on the actual run, I remarked to Matt that I was worried my sense of direction would keep me from getting my mileage. He tried hard to run with me for the first little while to make sure I didn’t get too off track, but after about half a mile, he said he couldn’t stand the pace anymore and left me in the dust.

I knew I was making all the right turns until a point about 5 miles in, where I turned down to the main highway too soon (although at the time, I was sure I had taken the right route). We had planted Gatorades about 2/3 of the way into our run, and when I reached the drinks and Matt hadn’t opened his, I knew something was wrong. Sure enough, when I got back to the house and compared routes with Matt, I had only run just over 13 miles. I was so disappointed in myself, because for awhile there, I thought I had really run all 15.

Oh well. Next time.

As for the new training program, it’s going all right. A part of me thinks that running every day was better for me in some ways (just because I’ve had a really  hard time doing the cross training on my off days), but hopefully we made the right decision. I do loathe the speed runs though—I’ve been training my body for endurance, not speed, so my 3-mile speed run last week was nothing short of torture. I was sore all week from it.

Highs of the Week: That glorious 90-minute interval on last week’s long run when I was sure I was really running 15 miles for the first time.

Lows of the Week: Seeing Matt’s unopened Gatorade and knowing that I’d made a wrong turn. And Thursday’s 10-mile run; I was so sore that each step caused me discomfort. Hopefully this next week will come with more triumphs.

Number of Miles Run: 26

Time Per Mile: 10 minutes (still holding on strong)

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