Warning – this is another post about running. I realize this isn’t exactly an exciting topic for some of my readers so feel free to skip this post and I won’t take it personally.
Taking a 5 week hiatus from running altogether (due to issues with my IT band) really impacted my marathon training. I took a hiatus from the very important long distance training runs and am paying for it now. My endurance isn’t where it needs to be but most importantly, my legs lack the strength to carry me a long distance.
I ran for the first time on Halloween. I ran 5 miles, very slowly, but without pain. According to my training schedule – I was supposed to run 20. The next Saturday I managed to run 10 miles following the Galloway method. This past Saturday, my goal was to run between 15-17 (secretly hoping for 17 miles because that would leave me with only 9 more miles for the marathon).
I woke up and just did NOT feel like running. But I knew I had to do it. I had something to prove. I started off slow. I followed the same Galloway method ratio (4 min run/1 min walk). I ran through Canton, Fells Point, the Inner Harbor and then made the decision to keep moving forward through Federal Hill and finally to Fort McHenry. It was 8 miles. Once I hit mile 9, I was exhausted. My legs felt like lead.
I tried downing a small packet of salt halfway through my goal distance but felt no difference. I ended up walking from 9.3-10.0 and then picked up to a run. I modified the Galloway method to run 3 min and walk 2 min. But at this point, I was feeling really down. I managed to get to 13.1 (hooray – a half marathon!) and stopped to walk. I thought I’d just walk for 5 minutes.
5 minutes came and went and I just kept walking. I finally looked at my Garmin and saw that I hit mile 14.0. I tried to pick up to a run but my brain and my legs were NOT in agreement. I just couldn’t pick up my legs. At all.
I ended up walking to Starbucks, getting a red eye then to Safeway to purchase some Epsom salt. I should add that I looked deranged. I was wearing black running capris, a traffic cone (orange) colored running shirt, black running sleeves, purple calf sleeves, neon green running headphones, a light grey headband (with a purple skull on it) and a light blue fuel belt. I should have taken a picture. I looked batshit crazy.
You would think the fact that I looked insane would have motivated me to keep running (EVERYONE was staring) but I just didn’t have it in me.
I took an ice bath when I got home and while my quads aren’t very sore today, my shins and ass are killing me. My knee is sore too (stupid IT band!).
The Philly Marathon folks sent an e-mail with my bib number and all the info I needed about the race. And they also included this:
Need to run a shorter distance?
If, for some reason, you need to run a shorter distance on Race day, you WILL be officially timed and scored and WILL BE ELIGIBLE for awards at the shorter distance. However, at the Expo, you will receive the bib number and shirt from your original event. At the finish line, please accept a medal ONLY for your official event. Your official event is printed on the race number that you are wearing.
Reason would dictate that I should just concede and run the half marathon. I clearly haven’t been able to train like I should have. But I don’t like the fact that I’d get a full marathon medal. That cheapens the whole thing to me. It seems wrong that I’d get the medal for the full marathon if I didn’t even run it.
I’ve told everyone about the marathon. I’m very hard headed too. And lots of folks (including Jeremy and my docs) think that the adrenaline from the marathon could possibly push me forward. But then again – do I really want a 6+ hour marathon time on my record? Oh who am I kidding – I don’t give a shit about time. But how deflating. I’m pretty sure once you hit that mark, most of the spectators have left.
Ugh – what to do. I go back and forth. I signed up with a 5 hr pace group and checked out what the splits would be for that pace (11:27 min/mile). I could hold a conversation at that pace (I have in the past running a 10:30 min/mile). Chatting usually gets my mind off of things (like distance!) and has miraculously pushed me to distances that I never thought were possible for me (a girl that once faked an asthma attack so I wouldn’t have to run 2 miles). Pacers are generally chatty, right?
I think I’m going to go for the full and just try to enjoy the entire experience regardless of coming in past 6 hours. For any friends that were planning on sticking around – I won’t hold you to that! The only person I expect to see when I cross the finish line is Jeremy (preferably holding some Scotch and desserts).
What would you do?