Happy Friday! Hope your week has been a great one. Mine has been fairly low key with the exception of a few intense workouts and dinner with friends last night. Definitely a different kind of lifestyle compared to even a year ago! I am enjoying the process of becoming marathon-ready, but am looking forward to a break starting February 28th, the day after my marathon!
Where I will be racing in 15 days! Photo credit: @visit_arizona
More immediately, I am looking forward to this upcoming Valentine’s Day weekend! I’m not much of a celebrator of the hallmark holiday, but will be nice to be out in town with my man! Arctic air is supposed to settle over Boston, but it looks like it will be pushed out by early next week. My last longish run before the marathon is on the schedule, and I think I am going to run it on an indoor track as opposed to treadmill. Running in zero degrees is not my jam!
The other side of the country is facing incredible heat these days, as opposed to the east coast. This doesn’t bode well for US Olympic Marathon trials on Saturday nor the LA marathon on Sunday (looks like it’s going to be in the 80’s and up to 90 degrees!). The marathon used to be held in early March, but race organizers pushed the race ahead by a few weeks for several reasons, one in order to combat the heat. Sounds like the heat is still an issue!
I ran the race in March 2014 before the date change, and it was the hottest race I’ve ever run. My sister ran the race with me, and we chose LA as a destination race to motivate us through another Boston winter. Despite the heat, we had such a great time running this point-to-point course that ended at the pier in Santa Monica. You can read my full race recap here!
The night before LA marathon 2014
My next marathon in AZ is in 15 days. I can’t believe it we have made it to the official 15 day countdown! Only 9-10 more workouts, including 2 longish runs, and then it’s race day! I’ve been catching up on some reading this week, including the Hansons Marathon Method (I’m not THAT much of a running nerd though, I have been switching between that book and “Girl on the Train”, which I’m loving! Stay tuned for a future post on “my favorite reads”!).
I did not follow Hansons Marathon Method in this training cycle, but am intrigued by this training plan that focuses on lower-mileage long runs that emphasize quality over quantity. In their plan, Keith and Kevin Hanson throw out any conventional marathon training guidance. One large difference between their method and the one that I have followed in this cycle is the long run- their long run peaks at 16 miles (following an easy 6-10 mile run depending on the training week), whereas I was scheduled for four 20 milers. Also, their training program is they have runners out there 6 days a week in order to build cumulative fatigue and get them used to tired legs, whereas I currently usually only run 5 days a week.
Stretching out before my first long run during this training cycle!
As Keith Hanson said, “Running on tired legs is a big part of our plan, because you’ve got to get used to it…It’s not a bad thing to feel tired.” There are several other differences, but so far I have been enjoying my individualized training plan generated by my coaches. The plan has pushed me further than ever before, and I am so excited to continue with my coaches even after this marathon!
One thing that my coaches, Hansons method, and my other running friends and community have in common is the idea that the best way to mentally prepare for a race is to be calm. As the Hansons say in their book, “A good way to find that calm is to approach the race with ‘cautious confidence’. Step back and spend a moment thinking about your training, reminding yourself that you are fit and ready to race. Training doesn’t lie.”
I’m going to be reminding myself of this idea while I head into the weekend!
What are your plans for the weekend? Valentine’s Day plans?
What do you do to stay calm before a race?
What training plan do you usually follow? What do you like about it? Before my coaches, I followed Hal Higdon’s plans. While I enjoyed using Hal’s free plans online, working with a coach has really helped me reach my running goals and has been beneficial in so many ways!