The taper begins… (Finally!)

(Warning this is gonna be a long one, but funny. Read on ..)
I am in taper mode? That’s kinda funny to me considering I have a 5,8 miler and Half Marathon this coming week but as far as my full marathon training goes, I MADE IT!!
Words cannot express how relieved I am. This past week I had more anxiety going out the door to do my 5 and 10 miler than my 22. To me that is crazy! I thought oh well if I cut it short a mile it will be ok but I completed it in full. Saturday morning my friend Jen agreed to meet me at the Mandeville Trailhead. I was so relieved to have a change in scenery for the last long training run that I didn’t mind that the weather was going to be 62 degrees and 100% humidity. I was ready. (Keep in mind that this was 30 degree increase in temperature from the weekend before. We are having one crazy winter) We started out a little after 7am. She took me along the Lakefront and a few neighborhoods. It had just rained heavily so jumping around the rain puddles and mud was a bit challenging. She saved the trees, trees and more trees route for the last 10 that I would be doing solo. She was such a trooper to hang with me for the first 12 since she was just getting over a bad cold and hadn’t run in three weeks. I felt pretty strong and reserved my GU for every 6 miles until mile 18 then I took one more to get me to mile 22 and tried to drink well so I would not get dehydrated.

During those last ten miles my mind wandered. So many thoughts:
• My aching feet for one. I had no issues with my hips or IT band but the hard pavement on the trailhead was brutal. Jen reminded me that’s what I have to look forward too on the streets of New Orleans for Rock ‘n’ Roll on 2-2-14. So true!
• I felt strong till about mile 14-16 then I needed Water!! I was desperately trying to get to mile 17 for the next water stop to get some in reserve. It was pretty warm. Since that last 10 was an out & back I was ready to be on the way back by that point.
• I thought of my crazy, runner friend/blogger Angela at http://www.runnerindenial.com/ She had mentioned that during some of the long runs your mind goes off in a bazillion directions. Physically I was feeling fine, no bonk but my mind well that was another story!
• Trees, trees and more trees.. Hmmmmm any dead bodies around? Again your mind wonders but I reminded myself that this is a family friendly park! lol
• I was seriously getting jealous of the people on bikes. Seriously I am doing this with my two legs and you have wheels!! So not fair!! And you’re taking a stretch break! Oh come on! (Again crazy thoughts)
• I thought of another great #MyTruth inspiration post to share. You will read at the bottom of this blog post but my last one was; “You can find inspiration from others but following through is all you.” I relish the rare moments of clarity during these long runs.

Finally heading back after mile 17 I knew I had it in the bag. My car with cold Gatorade was waiting for me and I would be going to Jen’s to shower and go get something to eat. There would be no finisher medal today but the feeling that I got my two 20+ milers in for my Full training was well worth it. I had did something that I truly thought I was not strong enough to accomplish. I can tell you everytime I ran my last 9 Half Marathons I was glad at Mile 12 I was almost done because I felt like I had nothing left in the tank. With this training I proved myself wrong. In three weeks I get to do this again and go 4.2 additional miles while having a fantastic time doing it. I picked up my pace to try to finish the last three miles strong which I did at 10:34, 10:11, and 10:18pace.
Summary for today’s 22 miler: 3hr:55min Average Pace: 10:41
Now if I could just freeze time for water breaks and stretching like my Garmin does!
I was ready for a shower and replenish my 2,233 calories burned!

My gorgeous friend Jennifer  and I on our way to get some grub after I got cleaned up. She was so great and supportive too me. I can't thank her enough.

My gorgeous friend Jennifer and I on our way to get some grub after I got cleaned up. She was so great and supportive too me. I can’t thank her enough.

That is Grilled Chicken underneath that mound of pepperjack cheese with a wheat bun and sweet potato fries on the side. so huge it was my lunch and dinner!

That is Grilled Chicken underneath the mound of pepperjack cheese with a wheat bun and sweet potato fries on the side. So huge it was my lunch and dinner! From The Rusty Pelican

I am looking forward to my 10th half next weekend at The Louisiana Marathon. It will be an easy taper run for me which is a bit disappointing but I have to keep my mind focused on my 1st Full. It will be a fun event and I can’t wait to cheer on my friends.
Speaking of I want to have a custom shirt made from CafePress for my Full.
Can you help me brainstorm?:
• “I just felt like running” (I love Forrest Gump references)
• #roadto26.2
• How many more miles?
• 26.2 D’oh! I checked the wrong box!
• Finish Strong

Your suggestions?
and as promised the #MyTruth inspiration from mile 22:
“ I may not be an athlete but I am all heart and that will take me far.

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7 thoughts on “The taper begins… (Finally!)

  1. You’re more than ready for that full, lady! You got this in the bag! Just have to calm your nerves. 🙂

    Suggestions:
    26.2 or bust!
    Running for my health (& sanity)!

  2. I know how you feel – today I only did 8 miles as part of my training plan for my half marathon, so I can’t even imagine how difficult 20 is – but as I was running and slowly dying I started getting mad at everyone on bikes because they looked so happy and not tired! I get a little irrational in the middle of my long runs 🙂 Great job on your long run and good luck in the marathon!

  3. Pingback: Run Support | Giving Thought | Giving Sight

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