We spent the better part of this year training for the Half Ironman triathlon on August 16th. After that, our training quietly shifted to the marathon. Trevor and I are coaches for the local marathon training program - Vancouver Fit - and we've been following that training schedule since the beginning of April. The training for both the marathon and the triathlon actually lined up nicely.
We had our final triathlon last weekend, then the 21 miler marathon training run and now its just the countdown to 26.2 on October 4th. The real marathon training didn't start until now. With the last triathlon of the season behind us, its really all about the run now.
This week has been a tough one. 21 miles on Monday, followed by a rest day and visit to the chiropractor, a spinning day, an upper body weights/abs and visit to the chiropractor day, then an upper body and run day today. My 3.5 mile run this morning was tough. I kept reminding myself that these last couple weeks are taper weeks and I need to take things slow, ease up, relax, hydrate, fuel. Its so interesting how a short run can sometimes feel SO much harder than a long run.
My leg has been nagging me all week. I've got visits schedules for the next two weeks with Dr. Pain (his name is actually Dr. May, but it should be Dr. Pain). This will take me up to the marathon day and should insure that I can run most of the marathon pain free.
I haven't focused too much on what this marathon means to me, mostly because we had so many other things to finish up before we tackle this. Its been 7 years since my first, last and only marathon. It was not a good day, it was not a good experience. I said I'd never do it again. Here I am, all these years later, registered and ready for the Portland Marathon....AND....signed up for Ironman Cananda in 2010, which, in case you don't know, ends with a marathon (after a 2.4 mile swim and a 112 mile bike ride).
So, this marathon, is pretty important to me. I need it. I know it will be hard, but I want it to be fun. In the sick way that only running 26.2 miles can be fun. This time is so much different than last. I am in MUCH better shape. I am stronger, my body fat percentage is lower, I am leaner and more powerful. Mentally, I am a different person. Seriously. Much different. I know my strength. I know what I can do. I expect more. My nutrition is right on. I want to experience the entire event instead of just finishing it. That, right there, may very well be the main difference. 7 years ago, I just wanted to be done. Now, I just want to get to the start and enjoy every minute of those 26.2 miles.
Something about tackling the thing you said you would never do is empowering. and exciting. and crazy.
October 4th....can't wait.