Although this is my final marathon “season”, I do have a few “bucket list” items that I want to check off before I hang up the sneakers.
As I stated before, I intend to continue running. But the long distance training is burning me out mentally and my chronic foot/ankle problem is serving notice that I should not plan on continuing this indefinitely.
Bottom line, if I walk away from the marathon, it will be on my terms.
I will likely complete another marathon or two down the road, but no more then one in a year with no sense of obligation to run any at all. I just can’t see myself ending the marathon career in Des Moines (as it is currently scheduled to end).
The bucket list includes one ultra (coming soon), one back-to-back marathon challenge (end of season) and one of the World Major Marathons (likely Chicago in the next couple of years…assuming I get selected via lottery).
But, the most imminent is the ultra…and I am starting to wonder how to train for it…no rush, since the race is 9 weeks away!
Aside from last year (Ironman scared me enough to force me into a real training plan) this is pretty typical for me…I sign up for whatever sounds cool, then I look at the calendar and wonder what the heck I just got myself into.
And everything looks so far away on the calendar…until they sneak up on you.
Yep, that’s me this season.
After running the Houston Marathon in mid January, I have done little except treadmill 5k’s (I am a fair weather runner, and I hate running more then 5k on the treadmill). I emerged from hibernation mid-March and ran a sub 2-hour Half Marathon (thank goodness for muscle memory).
I planned a rapid mileage ramp-up from there…except that it hasn’t been that rapid. The following week, I planned an 18 mile run (and…I did 15 miles), the following week would be 21 miles (and…I ran 18 miles). This weekend would be 24 miles (yep…I ran 18 miles…again).
This isn’t working out as I hoped (shocking).
So, how do I hope to pull this off? Well, I have been staring at the calendar all morning…and there is still a glimmer of hope.
Next week (week 1): 21 mile run (psychologically, I need to break 20 miles at least once).
Week 2-Hot Chocolate 15k (starting the taper, need a fun race to motivate me…and they feed you lots of chocolate at this one…and they give you a chocolate bar shaped medal).
Week 3-10k taper run
Week 4-Pittsburgh Marathon
Week 5-15 k recovery run
Week 6-27+ mile long run (I can dream optimistically…right?)
Week 7-15 mile taper run
Week 8-10k taper run
Week 9-FANS Ultra (minimum 50k)
Week 10-Start training for my summer triathlon season…
Yep, everything is under control. No problems here…
Expect I won’t have the base training, the endurance, or the weekly mileage to reasonably pursue an ultra. And, I am dealing with a nagging ankle injury.
Fortunately, this is the most beginner friendly ultra around. Go as far as you can (or want to go) in 24 hours. Stop anytime. 2 mile loop with two aid stations. Take a nap and come back if you would like. No such thing as a DNF…
That said, I look at my training plan and wonder what the heck I am thinking.
“May fortune favor the foolish…”