My coach and I make a LOT of Jack Daniels jokes and also talk about our training program like Jack is actually coaching us. We think we’re really funny. Some of what we joke about includes, “let’s get Jacked up!” Or “oh man, I hated Jack this morning” or “Jack is so mean.” This kind of stuff. So how am I feeling with 25 days left until M Day? All jacked up. I’m tired, I hurt, my confidence is at approximately 63% and to be honest, I’m kind of over it.
This morning I had a hell of a workout on my schedule– 40 mins easy, 20 mins @ LT, repeat, 2 miles easy. That’s 14 miles people. Luckily I have the day off so I took my time getting to the bike trail and started running. I drove to a hillier part of the bike trail (well, sort of hillier. not actually hilly. Sacramento hily) It was nice not getting up at 5 but I was still really, really tired. Let me back up… after all of last week’s business travel, my mom’s birthday, my mileage coming down, seeing a number that wasn’t great on the scale and the fact that I’m a girl I was absolutely convinced I was becoming a lard ass before the race. Plus, after I run 20 miles I am legitimately not hungry. This is an indirect way of saying that I haven’t eaten much the last few days. Don’t worry, I ate 3 squares, but I was eating like a person, not a marathon runner. I’ve also gotten kind of cocky about my skills and only take gu when I go more than 15 miles. I’m sure you can imagine where this is going.
The first set felt fine. In fact, I was running about 10 secs/mile faster than I should have been and it felt really easy. I started the second round of 40 mins easy and bonked. Big time. I saw slow numbers on my garmin that I have not seen in years. I felt awful. I convinced myself to keep going (I ran out and back so I didn’t really have a choice) when I got calf cramps. I have never truly cramped while running before and wow, it’s awful. They went away but then I started feeling really hungry, and then cold (sweaty + cold outside temps=freezing). And then I felt sad that I was running poorly. I told myself to buck up and started the second round of LT miles. Yeah, not happening. I couldn’t do it.
I’ve bonked before, but only on my bike, and never this badly. I was shaky, clammy and it felt like someone had attached 10 pound weights to each of my legs. If I’d had my phone I would have called someone to come and pick me up. So what did I do? Pulled over to a bench on the side of the trail, sat down and had a talk with myself. I basically had my head remind my legs that our only option to get home was to run to the car and that we could either run there in a half hour or walk there in an hour and be really mad when we were done. Luckily my legs listened to my head and we shuffled to the car. It wasn’t pretty and I’m pretty sure some bikers got some death glares they don’t deserve, but I made it.
Once I got to the car I was honestly worried about passing out on my drive. Luckily a nice person on Sand Bar Drive had a persimmon tree so I helped myself. Yep, I stole fruit. Whatever, you would have too. I felt instantly better once I ate something. When I got in the car I got REALLY mad when I saw that I had a bag from a race with 4 hammer gels in it. Disaster could have been averted. Oh well, live and learn and I’ll figure out a way to make it up this week.
I got home and weighed myself and was unsurprisingly down 4 lbs from my run. and the scale confirmed that I am not actually a lard ass. I made myself a nice brunch (sandwich thin, eggs, avocado, tomato, so good!) and swadled myself in compression socks which helped my calves stop twitching. Taper can’t come soon enough. The rest of this week should be pretty easy. I’m actually out of miles… between the Clarksburg race, this morning’s workout and my Tuesday and Monday runs I’ve already hit my weekly total (and I didn’t run that much Monday and Tuesday!). I’m waiting to hear from Alberto what I should do. Obviously I’m not going 3 days without running so instead of 50 miles I’ll probably end up in the 55-60 range.
I’m pretty sure I’m going to have a hard time tapering. After 18 weeks of 60+ miles/week getting into the 40s is going to be weird. I know I need it and I know my body really needs it to absorb all the training it’s gotten but I’m really going to have to keep my neurotic self in check. The taper/rest period is equally important to the monster month of preparation and I need to respect it just like I have every other aspect of my training schedule.
So that’s what’s up in training land. I’m going to go eat again. Underfueling isn’t cool.