I’m officially in ‘Taper Town’ and have been excited about this aspect of marathon training for months. It is the chance to cut back on the miles and the effort to ensure that my legs, body and mind are fresh for race day. Of course, I still have to deal with the ‘taper crazies’ (soon to be published blog) and the anticipation of the race, which is now only two weeks away! Wow, when I registered for this back in February, it seemed like it would never get here, and now I am on the doorstep of this grand adventure. Amazing how that works. So here is what I have accomplished today that will help me cross the finish line on October 25th.
Sunday: After a fabulous week in London, we had to go home. Sunday was out long flight to the US, so the only walking I did was in the airport terminals. Technically this was a rest day, which is great because I only walked about 2.75 miles. After last week’s 60+ miles of walking, this really was a great rest day! We arrived at our Atlanta hotel, and a package from my #solesister April was waiting for me. I now have new adornment for race day!! Orange & black – perfect colours for me, and I happened to be wearing Orioles attire that day, so it definitely works!
Monday: Rest day, and still travelling back home. Thankful for this extra day off.
Tuesday: 5 miles, 6.5mph pace. I am officially in taper town! Less than three weeks away, and my mileage is decreasing to give my body the best chance to rest up, recover fully and be fresh for October 25th.
Wednesday: 4 miles, 6.1 mph, level 2 hill interval. I am not really sure I should be doing this, but after feeling the burn around miles 14-16 in Hyde Park last week on small inclines, I figured I could use a bit of training in this area. So I kept the pace slow and just let my legs adjust to the inclines. Still ended up super sweaty! I really hope race day will be nice and cool!
Thursday: 5.3 miles, various speeds (total of 50 min), 0.5% incline. Not feeling WOW about this workout, and I think it is some fatigue setting in as well as ‘oh my goodness will this race NEVER get here???’ thoughts. I am ready. Just drop me in the race and I’ll do it. Anyway, I had a bit of an emotional moment when I started envisioning the Blue Mile (Mile 12) and the finish of the race. I can’t wait to experience those things in person. But I couldn’t cry at the gym, so I quickly focused on the TV to shake it off.
Today was the day I got my bib number. It really made it real, especially after having a pretty blah run. But it’s happening, and I will be there on October 25th!
Friday: Rest day. I looked up the famous people who have run and finished the Marine Corps Marathon in the past, and it was an interesting list. Both Mike Huckabee and Drew Carey in 4:37. Oprah and Sean Astin in 4:29. And for the love of all that is holy, Teddy Roosevelt, the Nationals mascot, did it in 6:27!
Saturday: 12 mi, way slower than I have done in a LONG time. This run was humbling. I thought I was going to easily finish in 2 hours (10 min miles), but I was closer to 11:15/mi. I only going to say that the heat and humidity of Cayman smacked me around; it was something I was blessedly free from the previous week in London. Maybe that reprieve wasn’t such a great idea. It was hard, demoralizing and has made me question what I will be able to do in two weeks. Yes, I know that it will be much cooler in DC, so I can pretty much figure on an average of 9:30 a mile thereabouts, but as I’ve never run 26 miles, I am not sure if I can truly keep up a faster pace, or if I will instead hit the wall and end up really slow the last 5K or 10K. In all this, I guess the biggest reminder I can give myself is that while I am afraid and nervous, at least I am confronting those fears and attempting to reach a very ambitious goal. I would never reach it if I didn’t at least try; it’s now just a matter of how well I do in reaching that goal!
TOTAL MILES: 26.3 mi