I’m not in Kansas anymore

“At first an ordeal and then an accomplishment, the daily run becomes a staple, like bread, or wine, a fine marriage, or air. It is also a free pass to friendship.” Benjamin Cheever

Me and little Bro after the Tomato 5k

Somehow I cheated myself into thinking that I was beyond that point where running is a struggle. I was lying to myself.  I’ve done half marathons and have tried to keep up a healthy running regimen that wouldn’t let me slip into the pit of laziness. I wasn’t training for anything but I wanted to, so I was crosstraining and running 50 minutes twice a week and adding a long run here and there. I felt great. I was loving the distance and much like the quote above says, running was a staple in my life. I looked forward to it. I was getting stronger. I was getting faster. I was starting to feel like a runner. That was until this week.

I have been in that 50, cross, long run repeat for a good couple of months and in the past four weeks have started my marathon training for the Cincinnati Flying Pig. So far, up till this point, I have been ahead in the training. It would say to go out and do a 3 or a 4 miler. I stuck to my 50 minutes so I wouldn’t backslide. The long runs were still in my safety zone of 6-8 miles. I felt great. My body responded well to it. Finally I felt like I was doing something right. Then I had a nasty 9 miler this past Saturday. I thankfully have had a great friend running with me who keeps me motivated and I felt awesome as we were running.  Then the last mile or two I just died. I couldn’t pick my legs up, my IT band started to tighten and for the first time I wondered if I would be able to finish. I wouldn’t let myself quit. I finished that last bit but the miles were unkind to my body and my mind. Could I really do this? How am I going to run THREE TIMES this distance? (Can you tell I’ve been a little whiney this week?)

So here it is Thursday and I haven’t run since Saturday. I know. I’m ashamed. I’ve taken a break and thought a lot about running lately. Sure, this training has kicked me back into “running is an ordeal” part but I forgot about that. I forgot that you have to have that for the accomplishment. Simple I know. I forgot that I’ve accomplished so much. I was a sprinter in high school, the longest I ran was a 400, now I run 6 miles a day. Pretty sure I didn’t get there without many ordeals like this nasty niner. So after a mental and physical break. I’m ready. I’m jumping back into the ordeal phase of running, when it’s not fun or even comfortable but I can’t wait to accomplish this marathon. I mean isn’t that what runners live for? That second you cross the finish line and KNOW that all the hard work you put in was worth it? This week I forgot what a real runner is but I’m back. Once again, I’m out of my comfort zone, as Dorothy says, “I’m no longer in Kansas.” But after this week, bring it on! I love to run and I love a challenge. BUT…I need your help! I’m a marathon rookie and I’m getting into terrain I don’t know. This post by Chic Runner I thought about how words like ice baths, compression socks and recovery plan are foreign to me. I want to be smart  about this and I need your help. What are your tips for running long distances? What are your favorite products? How do you recover from a long run?

So all my runner friends, those who’ve done 1/2’s,marathons, ultras, tri’s and live to tell the tale…I need you. Here’s what I’m starting with: my trusty foam roller, Asics, and favorite running tights. GO…

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6 thoughts on “I’m not in Kansas anymore

  1. ha ha ha, you are too cute. Don’t worry and don’t be afraid of the marathon. You’ll do great. First off recovery is very important after a long run. Do you already have a training plan for your marathon? That’s a good place to start. Then ice baths are really helpful once you get into longer runs (over 15 miles) to help ease the swelling and soreness you will experience. Compression socks help with recovery too because they help the swelling and get new blood circulating. Make sure that when you start running longer distances you fuel as you run. For me, I can’t take gus so I eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and jelly beans. Also you’ll need to hydrate yourself as you run. You can do this either with a fuel belt or handheld. I chose to do the water stops during a race, but that’s just me. Anyways, you’ll rock girl! don’t worry! 🙂 If you have any questions feel free to email me 🙂 I hope this made sense!

  2. Congrats on the decision to train for a marathon — that’s half the battle, I think! I agree with Ms. Chic in saying that finding a training plan that works for you, your goals, your schedule, etc, is a great first step. I used a Hal Higdon plan for my first marathon, and now, after a few injuries, find that the FIRST plan works best for me. It calls for three intense days of running per week and cross-training the other days. Runner’s World has a bunch of great training plans on its Web site, not to mention lots of info about recovery, gear, sports psychology — you name it. A local specialty running store/running club would also be a great resource. Best of luck!

  3. Good call from the girl who mentioned hydration. I’ve got a plan for our next long run. I like the gels, but I’ve heard those chews work, too. The CMM was handing out Cytomax last year, so I started training with it about 2 months ahead of time. It made a big difference because I think Cytomax tastes weird. It would have probably made me sick had I not been drinking it for a while.

    The last mile Saturday was a pretty solid hill, but you knocked it out!

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