I’ve been getting a lot of questions about my marathon training lately, questions like “Are you still running that marathon?” or even “You’re running a marathon? Since when?” Oops. I guess that’s a fair thought since I haven’t mentioned this in months. Hopefully this will satisfy any questions.
For those of you who don’t know, I really like running and even ran a marathon last March. It wasn’t the marathon of my dreams, but I finished; getting over an injury and training in just 12 weeks made my original goal of a sub-4:00 marathon overambitious and while I proudly finished it was no picnic. I even told myself while I was still running “I’m never doing one of these again.” And then 5 days later I signed up for the Philadelphia marathon on the first day of registration. Here we go again.
Since there were almost 8 months in between registration and race day, I didn’t think about training for most of the Summer. I decided that training would begin the day of a local half marathon I was running for fun. A week after that I went to Philadelphia for the Healthy Living Summit and to scope out the city to get a feel of what it would be like for the marathon.
|Fitness||10||Fitness||25 (Bike)||10||30 (Bike)||Fitness|
I wouldn’t say I’ve really been following a training “plan” since then, though here’s what my routine has looked like. I knew I wanted to fit 3 20-mile runs into this training cycle and built the rest of it around that and to fit my schedule. Besides the long runs I do, the rest of my workouts are pretty standard. As anyone can see from looking at this I love running 10 miles and easily fall into a routine.
So what is “Fitness”? Since I’ve been trying to burn fat and build muscle over the past 8 months or so, I’ve been doing more cross-training with weights. When I didn’t have a gym over the Summer, I got accustomed to doing Jillian’s Shred(which I highly recommend) followed by a 25-minute yoga routine with plenty of lifting. Now that I have a gym membership again, I usually do 20 minutes of HIIT on the elliptical and 30 minutes of free weight exercises which I basically stole from all 3 levels of Jillian’s Shred so I won’t go into describing them.
The runs this time around have been nothing but stellar—a complete 180 from my last training cycle. Since my goal is a sub-4:00 marathon, I’ll need to run at or below a 9:00 pace, which has been no problem as of lately. The one 20-miler I’ve done so far I finished almost 30 minutes faster than the 20-miler I ran back in March in preparation for my first marathon. Where is this speed coming from? I don’t really know.
With the marathon 6 weeks from today I’m feeling confident, maybe even a little cocky. My first 20-miler was a breeze and I’m hoping #2 and #3 will be even faster. My pace has quickened significantly lately even on the days I’m feeling “off” and I have no clue why. Maybe it’s the cooler temperatures, maybe I’m getting faster, or maybe the cross-training is working.
One speed bump I have hit lately is eating healthy in the month of September. In between moving back to Providence and new stresses appearing there were a lot of times last month where I wasn’t making the best decisions. Even though my runs have gotten faster, a lot of the muscle definition I built up over the Summer went away over night(or over 30 nights). Since last weekend I’ve made changes to try and eat better to burn fat but still fuel well for workouts which has been nothing if not a learning process. But that can wait for another post.
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