So this is it, huh? Sixteen weeks, 4 months, roughly 112 days ago I set out on a venture I would like to call ‘training for my first marathon.’ After reading back on my weekly posts, I noticed a common theme; each week I was asking myself, “Is this really happening?” Here I am four months later asking myself the same question. Will someone pinch me already?
Me, Kelsey, running a marathon? Ha. Seriously? You’ve got to be joking. Never. Never in a hundred years would I have imagined that I would be running a marathon. Five years ago I weighed 300lbs, two years ago I couldn’t even run five steps. One year ago I had just completed my first half marathon. Here I am just five days out from my first marathon.
Am I nervous? Honestly, no. That was the reason for that really long training run, I know I can finish the race. I have proved to myself that I can complete the distance; I just want to enjoy this Sunday. You only get your first marathon once. Excited? Getting there. I’m almost positive it was my excitement that woke me up at 4am today for no good reason at all.
It is interesting looking back and reading my progression of training over the weeks. Week 1 I set some goals:
- Take care of and listen to my body, and complete training injury-free-For the most part, this was fulfilled, and I accredit that to Jesus. And being given a brain to actually use. When I started to get burnt out on running 4 days a week, I scaled it back to 3 and moved my long runs to Thursdays. It turned my attitude completely around; I no longer dreaded my long runs but looked forward to them. I also did cross training that I actually enjoyed so it didn’t feel like a chore. With the exception of a minor plantar fascitis flare up, I have stayed completely healthy!
- Keep my diet as clean as possible and properly fueling- I didn’t do too bad on this with the exception of a few froyo splurges. I learned what works for my body, read: not pasta, pizza, or bread. I have had to accept the fact that those foods make me feel like crap therefore I don’t eat them; my ‘carb’ loading happens a couple of days before any run over 16 miles, and I eat what people say you shouldn’t eat the night before a long run- grilled chicken salad. I will be posting about my eating habits over training this week.
- Participate in a few group runs, especially for the longer distance– this didn’t happened and I’m cool with that. I got to know the people who ran on the trails that I frequent which was nice having that cameraderie. I also had a friend trail me on his bike for one of my sixteen milers which was nice, it helped pass the time and also pushed me to run faster. Other than that, I fully enjoyed spending a few hours alone every week. I thought it was going to be absolutely dreadful but came to love it.
- Be in the best shape of my life by the time I run this marathon-negative. I may or may not be in the best shape of my life, I don’t know. Just because someone can run for copious amounts of time doesn’t mean they’re in good shape. I have lost a good amount of my upper body strength because that wasn’t a focus of mine. Cardiovascular wise, I’m in the best shape of my life, but overall, I feel that I could always do better. Hence, why after this marathon I am really going to bring the reins in on my eating and exercise to lose about 10-15lbs, so when I start training for my next marathon I will be lighter. Less weight = faster running. Another marathon? You didn’t read that. Get your eyes fixed.