Yesterday I didn’t write a blog post. And I didn’t even notice. The last few weeks have been just a blurred smear of very long work days, apartment searching and fun weekend visitors. For maybe the first time since moving to New York, I feel completely swept up in the grind, and I’m pretty sure I don’t like it.
I’ve been feeling like a complete flop when it comes to training for the National Half Marathon. And oddly enough, I shouldn’t. I just compared my current training to what’s outlined in Hal’s intermediate plan, and I’m once again going above and beyond what he recommends. Hal had 7×400 down for last week’s speed training, and I did 8 (small victories people, work with me here). Yesterday’s box on the training calendar called for a 4.5 mile run. I did my usual 6.15. I’m slated for 8 400s this week [read: today], and I feel pretty confident that I’ll force myself to cover at least that much. Hal’s weekly mileage for last week added up to a little more than 20, and I managed to knock out almost 35, with a little ellipticalling and some minimal strength training on the side.
And yet…I feel like I’m falling under the mark as far as training goes. Especially when I compare it to my marathon training. Why is that?
My guess is, a combination of things:
1. I’m training for a half marathon.
The JD tells me this all the time: “It’s a half. You can run that in your sleep.” I usually roll my eyes when he says this or pretend he’s crazy, but truth be told, he’s not completely off the mark. While I don’t think I could run a half marathon in my sleep, I’m pretty sure I could wake up from a hefty sleep tomorrow morning and run one. Would it be my best? Heck no. Would I PR? Of course not. But I could definitely run one. I think because I KNOW I am going to run that race on March 17th, AND finish it, AND feel pretty good afterwards, it takes a little of the excitement out of training. The solution? Very likely, I need to up the competition with myself–do more speedwork, push myself to go faster, remind myself that my super-speedy cousin is running it with me and I don’t want her waiting at the finish line for 20 minutes after she crosses to finally be able to go get brunch…
2. I’m not training for a full marathon.
I’ve told you I’m on a roller coaster ride with my running–one day feeling like I can take on an Ironman (to further ignite that fire, a little kid I passed the other day saw me stretching outside my apartment in a strange stance, my weird Lululemon wind jacket billowing behind me, and asked his mom why I was dressed like a super hero) and the next, hating every fraction of a mile that my feet cover. I’m also on a roller coaster ride of emotions when it comes to my running. Part of me misses the thrill of marathon training so badly that I don’t want to wait until July to take it up again, and part of me says a spring marathon is not the best thing for my body to take on right now.
3. That demanding job/apartment search/life I’ve been talking about so much.
When marathon training hit its peak, I was working at a restaurant a hop, skip and a jump away from my stoop. Sure, restaurant work can be demanding–physically, as you’re on your feet for upwards of 8 hours at a time, and mentally, because you’ve got to keep your tongue in check when it comes to nasty customers–but overall, once you clock out for the day, you’re done for the day. When I was working at the restaurant, all my thoughts revolved around marathon training, and that was okay. There was plenty of room for them. With the current workload I’ve got, I’m spending a lot more time balancing work stress with apartment hunting, and only squeezing in thoughts of running/workouts around those other two items. Example: tonight is the 8439240 time in the last three weeks that I’ve booked a bike at spin class, only to find out that I need to work late and won’t be able to make it spin class. Will I still get to the gym at some point? You betcha. Will I push myself to tackle those 400s in lieu of spin class? Probably. Will I feel happy with the way things pan out? My guess is no. Part of the thrill of a good workout is committing to it early, and seeing to it that it happens. So even though I am making a point to squeeze workouts in, and hitting all of the marks on Hal’s plan, my brain is elsewhere, and I don’t feel as “connected” to my training. And somehow that makes me feel like I’m not really training/getting it all in.
4. I’m not a good resolutionist.
If I haven’t failed at half marathon training, I have failed at holding up my end of the bargain on my “new year’s resolutions.” Cutting back on the overindulgence? Very difficult when your office is dangling free pizza, bagels, pastries and cupcakes in your face every other day. My posture? I’m bent over like an 80-year old hunchback. And it’s only early February. Whereeee did I go wrong?
5. Mother nature is a typical, wishy-washy girl. One day its gorgeous and 55 and the next its freezing. No wonder I have a cold. And sniffles don’t mix with early-morning runs.
Now I’m at a point where one of three things will happen:
1. I’ll find the perfect apartment in the next four days, it will make my commute lovely and work will calm down and all will be right with the world, and all of my free time can go back to focusing on running and foam rolling and making impromptu trips to Jack Rabbit.Maybe I’ll be so click-my-heels happy I’ll sign up for a spring marathon. And run it. Fast. And life will be good.
2. I’ll find an apartment, the commute will stay the same, the workload will stay the same, and I’ll spend a lot of time crying/wondering how people have powerhouse careers while still managing to run 4930 marathons a year. I will not run a spring marathon and I’ll wonder how I’ll ever find the time to even train for New York in November. The JD will love his new over-emotional/undertrainined/depressed roommate.
3. I don’t want to talk about this one. Because this one involves NOT finding an apartment. And me going into a state of unimaginable panic.
They don’t call me the marathonwiner for nothing, eh?:)
Alls I want is to get my marathon mojo back!
If you’ve got pointers on how to do so, please leave them in the comments!
Have a very happy Wednesday kids!