It’s marathon day.
++ I’m not running it :[
I’ve been putting off this post for awhile because I just didn’t know what to say — I feel disappointed, embarrassed, frustrated — but I know it’s the right thing to do.
Right after #CHAARGrunsDC [pictures will be coming soon – ah, I know it’s been months!], Slowe – one of our fav Nike “Athletes” [employee] – told me that she’s moving from Columbus to Chicago + that her main focus was going to be the Chicago Marathon. She mentioned that they were going to creating a training crew [which became the #2SixPoints2 team] that would represent Nike during the Chicago Marathon. They would provide training – swag – a complimentary race — motivational speakers – and the best part, a crew to log your miles with. I was intrigued.
A marathon has always been on my fitness bucket list – I just didn’t know that I was going to accomplish it so soon. I’ve only done two half marathons + one 5K – but, I figured, hey if there’s any time to do a marathon it’s now with the Nike crew. ++ I nervously + excitedly said yes!
Training began 16 weeks ago + although I ran more than I have ever ran in 16 weeks – I logged 221.89 miles [532.25 miles is the ideal amount on Nike Coach beginner] – it wasn’t enough. My body is not ready – I am not ready. It was hard to admit to myself + let me tell you, I frequently thought maybe I should just do it – even today, I thought that! But I know in my heart that it would not be the best idea. Could I run it? Probably. Would I get injured? Maybe [probably].
The thing is – if I am doing a marathon, I want to race it. I want to qualify for Boston [yeah, I said it]. I don’t want to walk. I want to train properly. I want to train injury free.
If I am doing a freaking MARATHON — I want to own it. I want to #OWNCHICAGO, not just do it [no pun indeed ; )].
1] You have to train. No really, you have to train.
Confession. I have winged a half marathon before. You cannot wing a marathon. Lawrd. You need to train. You also need to make sure you have adequate time to train. During the beginning of training, I was working on the CHAARG Booty Camp + running. I was only able to keep this up for a couple weeks until I got off track — it was too hard for me to test out workouts + make time to run. I was doing a sixteen week marathon training program + by the third week, our long run was 10 miles! I decided to start cutting all the weekly miles in half, so that I wasn’t over working out. If you are planning on running a marathon, I definitely encourage you to make training your one + only priority “workout” wise.
2] Training buds are so important.
100% get a training bud! That is what we have our CHAARG community for : ) I guarantee that there is someone from your Chapter [or in your area, if you a Virtual CHAARG Girl] that would be interested in training for a marathon with you! This is something I wish I would have taken advantage of. Although I had the #2SixPoints2 crew to train with, my schedule didn’t make it so easy to get down to Chicago as I had originally thought it would. I really, really wish I had someone to run with on those long runs [for me, a long run is past 6 : )]. Even a friend on a bike works!
3] Listen to your body.
If there’s one thing I hope you take from this post it’s this – listen to your body. We are a group that loves to work out [at least most of the time ; )] – it’s hard to accept when it’s time to rest. It’s hard to accept when your body is saying no. You know your body more than anyone else – you need to treat it with love + care. Of course we want to push ourselves + be the best we can be, but there’s a difference between “sore” pain + pain pain. Realize this difference. Unfortunately, halfway through training I started noticing pain pain — I’m not sure if it was from overtraining or my form [see below!], but if I ran more than 5 miles, I would notice my knee swelling up. After continuing to run on it for awhile + the pain continuing//getting worse, I realized that I was being silly — my body was asking me to either rest or change something.
4] Seek help when you need it.
I know I have terrible running form. I have flat feet + my knees buckle in when I run — they always have. I used to wear inserts back in high school, but I stopped because I would get huge blisters [even wrapping my foot didn’t help!] — so I ended up ditching them. What I didn’t realize about my form is that it would have such an effect on me while training for a marathon. Um — what was I thinking? Of course bad form would have a huge effect! Anyone who is planning on running 500+ miles in 16 weeks better have good form! Anyways, I finally decided to *listen to my body* + am now seeing a personal trainer//chiropractor to correct my form. ++ I’m gonna tough it out + wear inserts again.
5] It’s okay to change – or push back – your goals.
I may have not accomplished my goal today, but that does not mean I will never accomplish it. I will run a marathon. I don’t know when it will happen, but I know it will. I think when I’m 26 it would be a good year to run it — 26.2 at 26 years old? I dig it.
I can’t wait until it’s my turn!