Marathon Training Update

Back at the beginning of August, I set the goal of being able to do a half a marathon (13.1 miles) in three hours. That probably doesn’t seem like that big of a goal considering that I’m training for a marathon and have been for a good portion of the year now. Plus, back in May I walked 26.2 miles at one time – but the problem is that I walked a lot of that time. I have to cut nearly two hours off of the almost-eight-hours that I did back then.

So, to make a long story short: During the time I was in North Dakota I not only ate whatever I wanted (instead of being Paleo like I normally am), but I didn’t do any running whatsoever. Sure, I walked 2-4 miles a day, but that is not the same as running. Then, when I got back to Ohio, I still wasn’t home, and although I walked more, I still didn’t get much running and healthy eating in. So, I was woefully behind in my training.

One of my first training walks/runs in August made me feel as if I were about to melt into a little ball of nothingness. At the end of an hour I was huffing and puffing and feeling quite dramatic and out of shape. When I figured it up and realized I hadn’t even gone at a fast enough pace to complete the marathon in the six hour time slot I had to work with, I was horrified. I couldn’t even keep up the pace for one hour? And I needed to do it for six! I promptly (as in that very moment), decided to be Paleo without any “cheat days” until after the marathon. Then I dove into eating healthily, drinking lots of water, and walking/running as much as possible.

A week later I was thrilled to accomplish my goal of 13.1 miles in 3 hours. Actually, a little over two minutes less than three miles. *cue happy dance* (haha, actually, cue aching legs and exhaustion)
I continued training, although most of the subsequent days I went for more of a 5 or six 6 practice, instead of 13 miles. Long walks/runs like that really take a lot of my energy, so I can’t do them too often or I wouldn’t accomplish much else. 
Eventually I did do 10 miles in 2 hours walk/run, which made me happy because it was by far the fastest I’d gone. (It also helped me put stuff in perspective: Instead of just being annoyed at myself  because I’m not faster/better than that, it helped me recall how until this year I’d never even done ten miles at once. Plus, about six months ago I literally couldn’t even jog for more than two or three minutes.)  

I wanted to get one more good run in during August, so I juggled things around yesterday and set aside three hours to work with. I then decided to have fun with the run and do it inside on the treadmill while watching a movie. (It’s still hard work, folks!)

By the end of two hours my legs were beginning to beg me to slow down, but I was like “haha, no.” Most of the time I traded off between 4.2 (which isn’t running, but for my short legs it’s still a really fast walk), and 5.2 (which is running…It feels like I’m galloping, actually, although I once saw my reflection and thought my legs looked like they were moving extremely slow).

When I reached the three hour mark, I was so very close to have gotten a whole extra mile in, that I went for 3 more minutes and ended my run with 14.1 miles. (And yes, I might have freaked out a little bit about keeping that pace up for twice as long, but hey…I’ve got 45 more days to train…)

Overall I’m incredibly thankful for the opportunity to run a marathon. I’m so grateful that God has blessed me with the health I now have, and that I can work toward improving it by eating healthy, exercising, and getting proper rest. It’s been a long road, but an exciting one.

Thanks for letting me share my marathon updates with y’all. I hope you’re having a fantastic day!

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Have you ever run (or wanted to run) a marathon? Does it even sound like fun to you? 

2 thoughts on “Marathon Training Update

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