Tuesday, March 10, 2015
LIFE VS THE LONG RUN
We all know that the long run is the cornerstone in marathon training. I've run 10 marathons and my best race, the race where I felt most comfortable (if you can call it that) in those final miles, where I could successfully hold on and then dig in for that last 10K, was the race where I had done the most long runs in my training cycle. I cursed them, complained to my husband about them, commiserated with my running partner during them, and in the end, they paid off in spades. At the moment, I am smack in the middle of training for a May marathon. I should have at least 4 to 5 long runs in the 15-17 range under my belt. I have one - a 15 miler that I ran back on January 26th. What happened, you ask? Life got in the way. First, mother nature got involved and made some decisions of her own. Then, my own personal health threw a couple curve balls at me. So, here I am, 6 weeks later, and I'm down quite a few miles. As my coach has said several times over the past few weeks...."well, Rebeca, there wasn't much you could have done about that." Here's what happened:
Sunday, Feb 1 - Blizzard 1 - Scheduled workout: 14 miles w/ tempo
Actual workout: 12 miles inside. Watched the Superbowl as I ran on the treadmill at the YMCA along with 2 other marathoners who were stuck inside with me. Go Pats.
Sunday Feb 8 - Blizzard 2 - Scheduled workout: 16 miles
Actual workout: 12 miles inside. Watched SNL re-runs. This second longish run on the dreadmill was significantly harder than the first. Like, borderline torture.
Monday Feb 16 - Polar Vortex hits New England (temp -40℉ w/ windchill) - Scheduled workout: 14 miles
Actual Workout: 10 miles inside. No tv. Switched to a different machine after 6 miles for both variety and sanity.
Sunday Feb 22 - Sick - Round 1 (sinus infection) - Scheduled workout: Half at the Hamptons 1/2 Marathon - race canceled due to weather and snow accumulation, not that I could have run it anyway.
Actual workout: 10 miles outside on Monday - ran this at a snail's pace. I was recovering from the infection, but I had very little in the tank.
Monday March 2 - Sick - Round 2 (stomach flu) Scheduled workout: 16 miles
Actual workout: NONE
Which brings us to yesterday. I was finally healthy, temps were in the 40s, the sun was shining bright, and I was ready to rock. Except that I couldn't. My daughter, Grace, had fallen on Saturday while she was skiing and tweaked her knee. It was swollen to the size of a grapefruit and hurt to touch. Instead of hitting the road after drop-off as planned, Grace and I headed over to the doctor's office. After some x-rays, a long visit with the doctor and a fitting for a knee brace (small fracture in the growth plate above her knee) we were headed back to school. I gave Grace a high five for being a major trooper and headed home. I had 2.5 hours before I had to be back at school for pick-up. Damned if I wasn't going for a long run. I headed out at 12:30. Ran over to my running buddy's house while carrying a jacket that I had for her son. Handed that off and ran 6 with her. Ran 6 more solo. And then ran home and grabbed my dog for the final four miles because I had to get her out before I picked up my kids. Grand total: 16 miles. It wasn't pretty, but I got it done. And I checked a few 'to-do's off my list to boot. I am a 40 year old working mom of two who likes to train for marathons. And more often than not, life gets in the way. As far as this upcoming marathon goes, who the hell knows. Perhaps I can't do it the way I'd hoped to do it. But, I'm going to do it anyway. Life is too short. Gotta run.
Listen to this:
We All Want the Same Thing - Rixton