On the Edge
Lately I feel with my training that I am on the edge of something good…
Unlike the last super speedy ramp up marathon cycle, this one has been very tough, but more steady. I’ve been able to handle it better. Physically my body is sore at times, but there is none of the limping, doing runs in the pool, using loads of KT tape, etc to complete runs. I’m just running them. Mentally my head feels clear, and focused. At times I do feel a kind of fear when it comes to big speed workouts and sometimes with the long runs. What I do not feel is a desperation that I felt in the last training cycle. I can not even describe my mental state during that last few months of the training cycle. I was not doing well, and I was frustrated because I wanted so badly to execute everything and my body would not cooperate with my mind. So I became a ball of frustration, fear, disappointment, etc.
I worked with my coach and we tried and tried to get me through it but I just really never made it all the way through. I think in fact, my body was not as capable of the rapid ramp, and the adjustments made there at the end saved me a very bad injury. My pride, however, was pretty beat up when my Marathon results came to be. I have some competitive friends who like to compare everything…. training plans, race times, etc. NONE of them have ever trained like I do. Not that I am a superstar- many of them have better results- but until you complete a training cycle like that, it won’t make any sense to you. I remember one day having a conversation with an ultra runner at the gym about my crash and burn, and he had TOTAL understanding of how it occurred. no criticism of coaching, no comparison to his plan or his results…he just said, “Oh yeah…that can occur…” It wasn’t burn out, it was just complete and utter misery. I wanted to run…but my body was just not able to handle it and then my brain started to really act up.
This time around…my body is working…on the long runs it is still slower than I’d like, but it is working. My brain is working with my body.
My Speed work has been showing some consistent improvement, with some actual confusion on my part because I am now regularly hitting times in speed work that I only dreamed of in the past.
And my body is tired…it is a periodized plan allowing me to hopefully peak during my race time. (Last period I peaked about 1-2 weeks after the race which stank but during those 1-2 weeks running was AWESOME!) So while I am training in a resistance phase, my times are not going to always be that stellar…which is hard for most people to understand as they mostly sign up for loads of races and run the races at about the same speeds as their long runs.
With the tired body which is performing well, I am kind of in the dark as to what my body will do during my taper…how fast CAN it be? How fast WILL it be. The speed work improvements are a good indication that it CAN be faster than I expected, but it remains to be seen how well I can execute and how fast I will be.
One thing for sure….I’m really sick of everyone else jumping on the plan. It’s different from theirs, so they feel the need to defend and criticize. BUt it seems to be working for me.
3 weeks of very very long runs and then a half marathon. I hope the half goes well, but it’s clearly not “THE RACE”
So… we’ll see. I mean we all know this one thing to be true…