I have reached the halfway point in my marathon training and 77% of my fundraising goal. Today is August 7th and two months from today I'll probably be at the expo and trying to get some sleep because in the morning I'm going to run the marathon. Yup, just like that ;)
Things have gotten really real. This Saturday I ran a 6k so that Getahun (Gae-Ta-Hun) could have clean water. I ran what he typically has to walk just to bring water to his family, except I didn't have to carry a heavy Jerry Can. I picked one up (its heavy). I saw half a dozen guys carry one the full 6k and once again I was reminded of how fortunate I am.
I am very fortunate indeed.
The training miles are rapidly increasing, tomorrow morning I'll run 7 miles, and on Saturday 15 :0
I've decided to get a monthly membership is a sports recovery facility. My only injury to date is a large blister and I'd love to keep it that way. I like running, my biggest hurdle lately is the time commitment. Morning runs equate to not getting to work early and waking up before 5:00 am six days a week. But when I miss a run I feel weird, one day off feels like DAYS.
Most of this post fits into the category of things I never would have expected I would be saying!
warning: this is going to be one of those venting / whining / personal-resolution blog posts.
The Saturday before last I was driving to and from the south of Illinois to pick up my oldest at the end of her summer session. (Saturday is the group long run of the training week.) The original plan was to make up my long run on Sunday; but my running partner was not feeling up to 12 miles back to back. By the time this was all figured out the sun and humidity had risen to a very undesirable level and I settled for some speed work at a track near by.
The good news is that I noticed a faster pace during my subsequent weekly runs, the bad news is that the speed work and possibly the “give” of the track caused a large blister to develop at the back of my heel. I noticed the discomfort but the the blister felt deep and fully encapsulated with skin so my internal direction was to wear socks with more cushion and continue with training. Because I had just missed a long run the previous week and the next long run was a half marathon I was determined to stick to training and all was going well.
Training went very well but after Tuesday’s run I decided I should add one of these wonderful gel bandages for good measure (these things really are heaven sent when it comes to shoe caused blisters); my blister was larger than the bandage. I ran anyway on Thursday. Despite the size of my sub-dermal blister I didn’t feel it much while running so I kept running. After Thursday’s run I knew that there was a problem; not only was my blister no longer sub-dermal it had also burst. I also noticed that the interior of my shoes had a tear in the fabric behind my heel.
The good news is that at the end of the day the store where I had purchased the shoes replaced them (I was sold a pair that was too small for running). The bad news is that I now had a brand new pair of shoes (read NOT BROKEN IN) and a large blister the day before my first 13.1 mile long run. I did my best to “break in” my new shoes by wearing them the night before the run. Morning of I got up, got ready and headed to the lake. Upon my arrival I took a quick and short jog and felt as if my new skin was tearing. I came to the resolution that I could not run. :( Yesterday was an absolutely beautiful day, maybe a tiny bit warm but gorgeous! Instead of running I volunteered to man the gear check for the team. The worst part was being there as everyone came back and knowing that unlike all the other newbies, I had not run my first half marathon (in opposed to having a “now infected” patch of skin that would keep me from running, possibly walking, for a few more weeks).
Hiccups (injuries) during marathon training are par for the course and if a large blister is the worst thing that I will have to deal with I consider myself to be very blessed. My current goal is to be ready to run next Saturday and to be back on track for the remainder of my training.
I am a large advocate of listening to my body, I always have been and I always will be. What really sucks is that I can walk and possible run just fine, so long as I am wearing footwear that does not touch my heel . . . moving forward I will baby my feet a little more:
I will keep them moisturized (dry skin is more prone to friction blisters).
I will check the inside of my shoes for fabric tears (the fabric rolls up and creates hot spots that even cushioned socks cannot compensate for).
I will apply body glide to my feet before every run.
It’s almost funny how much I am missing running. Two Saturday’s in a row with no long run and I’m experiencing some serious FOMO. Next Saturday we have a charity “6k for Water” (3.72 miles) followed by a six+ mile training run for a total of ten which means no half for me until the mileage jumps to fifteen miles two weeks from now on August 12th; it sounds like a lot but I know that I’ll be okay even though my current longest run is ten miles. I will continue to stick to the training schedule, STAY HYDRATED and will eat (fuel) responsibly.
Today I picked up my oldest from a summer college program that only lasted two weeks. In three weeks I will drop her off for her freshman fall semester. I know that she will come back home. I know that I’ll adjust to her being away. But as I drove to get her I thought about how I didn’t want to drop her off. I didn’t want to not see or interact with her on a daily basis. Actually I do want those things because by definition for her to be an independent adult that needs to be our reality.
The conversation ended with what I already know: she has to leave the nest. I don’t want to not live close to them.
A few weeks ago she and her sister were arguing, typical teen/sister/sibling stuff; I tried to get them to see what I have known for so long and that is that this group, OUR group, our FAMILY, will never be the same again. It’s a short sentence with such profound implications that I cannot even begin to dive into it. I’m having a hard time with it because I really like the way things are. I know they still have to change, and that is a good thing.
I started my new trip around the sun with a run along the lake with a new group of friends, I had a good breakfast then took a solid 3 hour nap. I’ve had a productive weekend, I’ve had a well weekend, I’ve had a healthy weekend and if this sets the stage for the coming year I am in for such a beautiful time!
Marathon training is coming along nicely, I am on target. I had a few hiccups dealing with a sense of obligation but made the choice to honor my feelings and I am happy with my decision: my official training group was technically just fine but I found myself running solo for the Saturday long runs and this was not my preference. I have gone back to training with Team World Vision, my father’s team. I trained with them during my foundation training and it feels good to be running with them again. Just as you should listen to your body, you need to listen to your spirit.
If anyone were to ask me I would tell them that having a training program that feels right to them is essential. This week was a cutback week but before that I officially made my debut in the double-digit club by running 10 miles! It felt great and I felt as though I could have run longer. Yesterday was the last time I will run single digit miles until the taper in September. Between now and then the miles are on the increase with an occasional cut-back week for recovery. I’m so excited!