It’s been a while since I’ve shared an update on my marathon training. After a long few months of summer running, I finally started to feel like I was making progress in late July. I PR’d my 5k, which was a pretty big surprise. You can read that race recap here!
I am following a McMillian running training plan, it it is pushing me outside of the comfort zone that I stayed in the last couple of years. The plan was custom built off of my fitness and current race paces, so each workout has a pace range that I am supposed to follow. Some of those paces are really easy, and some are a little tough.
I am able to move days around to fit my schedule, but I’m trying very hard to stick to the plan. In fact, I hit every workout in July, despite some really hot weather. This time around in training, I don’t want to give myself any excuses not to do a run, and I’ve also tried not to become too dependant on the treadmill, which just doesn’t give the same conditions as an outdoor race. I’ve had a lot of 4:45am wake ups, and a few runs in the pouring rain.
A few weeks ago, I set out for a 17 mile run and got about 7 miles in when it started downpouring rain. Like seriously downpouring. I had to run a mile in it until I found somewhere to shelter and decided I was getting too cold to stand there sopping wet, so I took off to run the 2 miles back to my car. Once I got back to my car, it completely cleared up, so I went back to finishing the 7 miles I had left at that point. It was a pretty miserable run, but the next week I had another 17 mile run that felt (almost) easy.
My training plan has a lot of 35-60 minute easy runs, which I actually find the hardest. I don’t enjoy running in my neighborhood because there are a lot of intersections, streets without sidewalks, and men who think they need to interrupt your workout by honking/screaming/being creepy. These runs don’t feel like they are doing much since they aren’t fast, or far, but I know they are helping me build resistance to fatigue, especially as the mileage increases. It also makes the workouts where I can drive somewhere fun seem that much better.
I’ve also been working on running hills during specific hill workouts as well as during my long runs. The Twin Cities Marathon has a lot of hills the last 6 miles, so you have to be ready for them! Hills become a mental test for me, and the moment I give myself permission to stop and walk, I do it. So I’ve been focusing on NOT doing that, and powering through to the top, and I’ve been making a lot of progress.
Another exciting update for my training is that I have reached my fundraising goal for my Solemates campaign for Girls on the Run Twin Cities. I’ve raised over $1000! The money will go to scholarships and things like running shoes and clothing for the girls. I’m so appreciative to everyone who has donated, and can’t wait to make them proud on race day! If you would still like to donate to help even more girls, the link is here!
Other than that, it’s back to the grind of running! I’ve been pushing my body so hard, that I am looking forward to a month or two of rest on the other side of the marathon!