Marathons, Drugs That Are Good For You

In January of 2008, when I decided out of the blue, that I wanted to run a marathon, My family didn’t know what to think.  I wasn’t even a runner.  I had just seen the movie The Bucket List and for some reason thought that this would be cool to add to my list.

I decided that I should run a half marathon first and then go full out.  I looked for a schedule online and found this great website marathon guide. Naive to the terminology I thought that a trail run just

meant that you were not running on the road.  Ha ha.  The joke was on me, but I completed the 13.1 miles of hills and rocks and tree stumps.  I only fell twice.  My friends and family at the finish line had weird looks on their face.  I’m still not sure if it was because they didn’t think that I would finish or because they didn’t expect me to come out all banged up and a little bloody.

Finishing gave me the confidence I needed to go for the full 26.2 miles.  I returned to the faithful web to find a training schedule and found Hal Higdon’s page.  It’s awesome.  My husband was a little curious and decided he would train with me “until the miles got really crazy”.  They don’t call it a “runner’s high” for no reason.  Not only do you feel great, you become addicted.  He couldn’t stop, even when the training miles “got really crazy”.  In October 2008 we both ran our first marathon.  We weren’t exactly couch to marathon, but we were pretty darn close.

Here’s how it goes.  You wait at the starting line feeling a little buzzed.  The gun goes off and you are on your euphoric trip.  Floating, not running, for miles and miles.  Then the buzz wears off and you crash.  Why am I doing this?  Why did I do this?  I am definitely never doing this again!  No more runners’ high for me. 

Then, in the distance, you see it.  The finish line.  Out of nowhere comes a burst of energy and again you are floating.  Only this time you are floating really fast towards the finish line.  The very second you cross it you think I can’t wait to do this again!  All of the misery of the crash is somehow erased from your brain (sort of like child birth).  And, that’s how you get hooked.  Marathons are as addicting as any drug, but only with positive side effects.

Here’s my Month 3 Training Schedule for a fall marathon.  You’ll see P90X blended in with my training this year.  I may get a little crazy and even through in a little Insanity on a few days.  Two more addictions.


A Life Lesson From Running

Nutrition is just as an important part of your planning as anything else.  You don’t have to count calories or carbs, just be mindful that what you put into your body you will get back out of your body in performance. 

Remember that old physics lesson?
Energy is never created nor destroyed, but it can change form.  Great nutrition; great energy, great run, great creativity, great conversations, great work.  Crappy nutrition: crappy …

3 Little Words

3 little words can be such a difference maker. . .

Schedules, lists, planning, calendars; these are not about being Type A (although those who don’t do them find amusement through that accusation).  They are about reducing stress and being happier.  Really, schedules make you happier?  Lists reduce stress?  Yes,  absolutely!!!
Here’s the morning self talk without planning

Maybe I can hit snooze one more time, and maybe one more time. Now, is the right time to get up.  What do I need to do today?  I guess I’ll get my workout in after work since I didn’t get up this morning.” 
Later that day…
I don’t feel like cooking.  Let’s go out.  I guess I’ll get my workout in tomorrow.”
Tomorrow, repeat.
Weekend, “I don’t know why these jeans don’t fit.”
Hmm, sound familiar?
Here’s the story with planning
“Time to get up.  There’s a 5 mile run on my schedule today. Bring it!!!!”
Later in the day self talk
I can do anything.  I started my day out with an awesome run and now I am ready.  Bring it!!!!”
Tomorrow, repeat
Weekend,  “Look at how good these jeans fit – sweet!”
Find a system that works for you.  I love my Outlook calendar, but a notebook or sticky notes work just fine too.  It doesn’t have to be formal or fancy.  Put your goals in writing to help you stick to them and don’t worry about all you have to do tomorrow because you put it off today.
July’s training schedule can be found here:  Fall Marathon Prep Month 2

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