Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Agh Hail the Marathon Taper. Or Not

I'm bored. The End.

Just kidding. Well, kinda. I'm starting to get restless. And, I should probably really get out of the house at some point. Shower, maybe even brush my hair and apply makeup.

Someday that will happen. Someday.

After our week in Mexico I've REALLY started my taper. Taking resting to a whole knew level. Well, it's been a week and I totally feel rested and ready. Well, maybe not totally ready...but I do know that come Saturday I will be.

There is something so different about a marathon taper vs an Ironman taper. Lots, actually. In Ironman taper you are exhausted. Famished. Sore, tired, hungry and grumpy. You wonder how you could possibly go 140.6miles in ONE day when you feel that crappy. And, for me at least, it lasts 2 FULL weeks. The last few long workouts are horrific. You start to doubt yourself.

Then compare it to the marathon taper. Which I may have thought similar to the description above if, well if I had never experienced the Ironman taper.

Saturday was my last "long" run. The plan I was following called for a mere 1 hour run. I went just a couple mins over and ran a whopping 7miles. I don't know that I have EVER tapered to that low of mileage for a marathon in the past, but I also have never done so much speed work, so I stuck to the plan.

Saturday afternoon I was TIRED. Even after about 10hours of sleep. My knees hurt, my glutes hurt & my IT band felt tight.


Sunday I laid around all day snuggled in blankets. Hey it was cold out side (read, hey..I maybe had a slight hangover). We rented movies. Ate healthy popcorn, jr mints & mike and ikes. It was just like being at the theatre, sans having to actually shower and look presentable to the public. It was PERFECT.

Yesterday I made it out of the house for a lunch time swim with masters in the RAIN. Yes, I feel like a champ for going - but there is nothing better then swimming with rain drops falling on top of you. Even if I complain the entire way INTO the pool. It really is awesome.

Today I got to go out (in the cold again) for a whopping 30min run. That's right 3.25miles in zone 1. Nothing like a good warm up to tire you out. Or, do absolutely nothing for your boredom.

My legs feel fantastic, rested. I'm managed to stay healthy thus fair (knock and wood, and a quick puff of my inhaler). The weather is looking great for race day. Things are lining up well.

I've gone through 99.9 million scenarios of outcomes for the race. So many variables:

My PR is 4:19 (nothing to brag about). It was at the St. George Marathon. I was running 10.5min miles in zone 2 at that time. Now, I run 8:30-9:15min miles in that same zone. I ran the half last year in 1:48. 5 months later with very little training I ran another half in 1:45. My knee feels great, but I also know deep down it's not. When you go from Ironman training to just marathon training you feel like you haven't trained enough. 5-8hours a week of exercise vs 12-24hours per week, totally different.

I feel good, I feel strong. I feel somewhat confident. If only I had a really good marathon under my belt to come up with some expectations. I did several weeks of yasso 800s. According to the theory behind them, I could have a VERY fast marathon. I am not however, THAT confident.

So, in just a few days, I'll be in Tucson. Freezing my hiney off at the start. Scared, nervous, and wondering why I got myself into this. Then, approx XX hours after that, I will be (hopefully) a very happy, and soon to be intoxicated finisher.


Molly said...

I think you are going to do great! You've made it (almost) to the starting line injury-free and well-trained! Have an awesome race!

jessithompson said...

Wishing you a wonderful race, rock star! Great post. It made me chuckle! :)

Jessica said...

I think you will do great! It really is a great (but punishing 24 hrs later) course, and you are stronger than ever it sounds like! See you at the start! I will be the one behind you!