And so, it’s crunch time in marathon training…two weeks to go. You know you’ve done all of the training for the past 14 or so weeks. You know you’re super fit. And yet, the thought of tapering out your training makes you feel like you’re not doing enough!!
I write this today after completing what I hoped would have been a lovely relaxed 13.1 miles, but which actually became one of the toughest training runs I’ve done to date, if not THE toughest training run!! I hit “the wall” at mile 3. For me, this meant that my head told me I couldn’t go on any further. I tried to push through. I had a panic attack. And then I cried my way around the next 6.5 miles, until I felt normal again and stopped at a very quick 9.5 miles (I managed to keep up sub 10 minute miles). Even though I didn’t hit my target amount of miles, I continued on with a look of sheer determination for those final 6.5 miles, and armed with the mantra “I shall not be defeated” (apparently today’s mantra was inspired by many a historical action film), I managed to keep my legs going and get around the route. And every time I nearly stopped, I managed to get my legs back into gear again.
So for anyone struggling with this part of their training, be it nerves, tiredness, not enough time to fit in the runs you’d like, I say to you: it’s ok!! Hey, we’ve been doing awesomely in our training so far, so there’s nothing to worry about! We’re all gonna experience that “wall” at some point. And whatever that “wall” means to you, be it psychological, or that your legs have seized up, or that the weathers just not doing what you want it to do, we all know how to deal with it! We go through life hitting these “walls” each and every day, it’s just amplified slightly when you’re running because there’s just you and the thoughts in your head. So if your heads saying “you can’t run any further” you just tell it “hells yes I can, I did it in training and I’m gonna jolly well do it today”, if your legs are feeling a bit jellified, you tell them “remember that day or that training session when I felt absolutely exhausted and couldn’t go on, and then I managed to finish my mental day or run, well we’re gonna find that extra energy and keep going legs”, or if the weathers not doing what you want it to do, you just tell yourself “isn’t it nice to have a change every once in a while, I wonder what fun and exciting things I’m gonna discover about running in this weather condition”!!! The fact is, we all know we can get to that finish line, it’s the getting there that we need to do. And if our heads are being naughty and giving us the spiel about us not being able to, we shall just remember all of the awesome runs we’ve been on throughout training and bust those bad thoughts’ chops!!
And so I shall leave you with what I’ve gained today:
1. The knowledge that although I’m nervous and I’m a bit scared, I can make it through the marathon and I’m gonna make it through smiling all the way, even if I do have to have the mantra “I shall not be defeated”!
And 2. I’ve also gained a rather fetching watch and t-shirt tan, which I can’t wait to show off on race day!
Keep up the awesome hard work, and hey, if you have a tough run one day, just remember all of the awesome runs you’ve done and they’re bound to outweigh the tough one!!
Sending you all positive vibes as we finish our taper ready for the big day!!
Katie P xxx
Wanna donate to my marathon charity – Sense?! Well, you can do that online at http://www.justgiving.com/Katie-Pritchard1 🙂