I’m almost halfway through my training schedule for the half-marathon in January. This time around the training is so different. The first time I trained for a half-marathon, each long run was my “longest run ever.” I remember feeling slightly sick to my stomach at the thought of running eight miles and I still felt nauseous with each long run beyond that distance. The half-marathon itself was my longest run ever. And I swear I only got from mile 11 to the finish through will power. I remember distinctly feeling that my right leg was going to fall off. It was not an easy accomplishment.
The next time I trained for a long race it was the marathon. I had some of the same experiences in that training schedule. There were a number of runs that were my longest ever. I had some nerves during training. The intensity of that schedule was certainly something I had never experienced. I had runs of six miles that were considered my easy days. I found blocks of 3-5 hours on some days just for running.
Now I’m training for a distance that I’ve run before. Each run on my schedule is a distance with which I’m familiar. In fact, during the marathon training I had six runs around or over (sometimes far over) the half-marathon distance. That makes this training schedule feel a lot less intimidating. I’m not terribly stressed about the runs. In fact, part of me feels like I could run the half this weekend if I had too – I wouldn’t be setting a PR mind you, but I could run the distance. That’s what marathon training did to me, it gave me a confidence in my abilities and a knowledge of how to push my body and what to expect from it.
Even with all of that, this schedule is burning me out. It’s a busy time of year. I just started a new work project that is going to take up a lot of my time. And I have this training schedule looming over me. Nagging me about when I’m going to get my runs in and making sure I don’t cheat on the distance.
The list-maker, planning soul inside of me loves the training schedule. Loves looking at last week and seeing that I ran 18.6 miles. Loves seeing the totals climb in a nice orderly fashion.
But there’s a little part of me that is mad at that schedule. Wants to tell it to stop pushing me. To let up a little for goodness sake. There’s a little part of me that would like to have a day where I don’t have to find time to run or cross train.
I think I need to play hooky from my schedule.