Miles To Go

Knitting content has slowed to a halt, which means this blog has gone pretty quiet. My full focus has been on getting ready for the Instant Classic Half Marathon that is just about 6 weeks away now. Lunch hours are dedicated to either runs or cross training in the weight room. One or more evenings per week will find me doing more of the same at the gym. Saturday mornings are reserved for long runs with a team that is training for another half marathon on the same weekend as the Instant Classic. This Saturday will see me run my first double digit mileage ever.

The cool thing is now I am 100% confident that I will have no trouble finishing the race, short of catastrophic injury or illness (please knock on any wood you have handy for me), but for me, this was never about just finishing the race. I have a goal time I want to finish in, (2 hours 30 minutes; I fantasize about finishing in even less time than that, but I am trying to be realistic) and it is not an unreasonable time, but it requires not just a large quantity of training miles but some quality runs in my training for speed, efficient use of oxygen and glycogen, and mental stamina.

It is my brain that is my weakest point and to help overcome that lizard brain that complains when it’s too tough or hurts too much or makes excuses, I spend a lot of time visualizing my race, my training runs, and think silly-sounding thoughts like “I am so lucky I am able to run 6 miles” or “How fortunate am I that I choose to do this and enjoy it enough to keep doing it.” Sounds silly to type it out, but for few weeks, the cycle in my brain sounded like “This hurts. You are a sissy because you had to walk before 5 miles. If you had to take a walk break at 5 miles, why would you even think you could tackle 13?” And so forth, without end. Enough of that, thank you very much.

When I am not training, thinking of training, eating, or spending time with Grace, I prefer to be sleeping. These days, I am bushed by 8pm and often will be sound asleep before 10pm. Twice in the past week I have stayed up really late (midnight or later) and I have paid the price. My whole body, but especially my legs are tired all the time and I really have found that I need my sleep to recover. I haven’t been to an SCA event since early December and I don’t see my friends as much, either. Even when I do, I don’t have much interesting news to share. I can talk all day about lactic thresholds, VO2 max, speed intervals, what my preferred fuel gels are, and what types of cross training I like (weightlifting and yoga), but other than that stuff…I am incredibly dull company these days and prone to dozing off unexpectedly on Saturday afternoons, I am afraid.

This is my whole focus right now and I suspect it will only get worse as we close in on March 17th, but it is also February and the edges of winter are beginning to look frayed around here. You know what February and March bring every year?

Garden planning. Now that is something to definitely look forward too. I can’t wait.

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