May 16th, 2011
Hey, hey, hey!
Pardon my make-up less face and my disgusting un-done hair. I haven’t done either since Friday. Well, actually I haven’t done my hair since last Saturday. If a side pony-tail counts as “doing your hair.” Again, proof I was raised with boys.
My husband has the utmost patience with me. Either that or he’s blind.
And right now he’s mowing the lawn, so I really hope he’s not blind. That could be very dangerous!
And speaking of Dave, the poor guy has a terrible case of poison ivy. He’s a pretty even-tempered person, but for the past week he has been one. big. grump. But I don’t blame him. He can be as grumpy as he wants to be as long as he keeps the poison ivy to himself.
But between the two of us, we’re one big pussing mess. My toes are oozing grossness and his arm is disgusting. And we both complain constantly. It’s good thing we don’t have any kids or they would be fending for themselves right now. Or grounded for looking at us wrong or something like that.
ANYHOW. I wanted to run down some things I learned about marathon training. I know a lot of you have already run them, but many of you are considering it. Here is a summation of what I have learned about things I wasn’t really expecting:
- You will develop approximately 3 stomachs, possibly more. Seriously. I could eat a full meal at any given time. It’s like a normal diet would just not satisfy me. I learned that it was important to have fresh fruit and veggies on hand to snack on, because I would be so hungry I would just turn to whatever was lying around (read: Oreos and Pringles).
- You will gain weight. Ok, that’s not necessarily a given, but it’s a strong possibility. A lot of it will be muscle, but not all of it. My butt, thighs and hips became solid muscle and I went up at least a pant size. Really, it was annoying not because I felt fat, I just hate to shop. In fact, I felt in better shape than I ever have in my entire life. I’m completely solid and happy with my marathon body because I know I was treating it well.
- Your feet will never look the same. They just won’t. You might not lose toenails like I do, but if you run significant distances, blisters and calluses are inevitable. Ask for discount pedicures since you’re missing nails and avoid sandals. You just have to deal with it.
- Sleep never felt so good. I don’t think I had one single bad night’s sleep since I started training. At least 8 hours, too. AT LEAST. And you’ll want to nap any chance you get. Not that you’ll be sitting there about to fall asleep, but at any given time, a 2-hour nap sounds like a good idea.
- Tapering plays with your emotions. You’re so happy to no longer have running rule your free time, but at the same time, there’s nothing that you want more than a good ol’ run. And did you train enough? Long enough? Hard enough? Maybe just one more long run? How about another speed work out? Dang! I should have cross trained more! Stop! Just relax and trust your training. You’ll be fine.
- And your appetite while tapering? GONE. But stuff your face anyway. You might feel continuously bloated for two weeks, but if you want to finish the race, go have a second breakfast. And drink another liter of water while you’re at it. And just hide your scale. You don’t want to look at it. I haven’t been on it since March.
- But despite all the focus on your body, it’s really all about your head. The day before the race, Dee told me, “90% of a marathon is between your ears.” Yea. So true. And I have found that that’s the importance of long runs. Not so much to physically cover the distance, but rather to KNOW you can cover the distance. There is comfort in knowing that you’ve run “just one more mile” before.
- It’s addicting. So if you’re not ok with an insatiable appetite, narcolepsy, weight gain and disgusting feet, don’t run even one marathon, because you’re going to have to run another.It’s amazing how quickly your mind changes. As I was limping around mile 22, I swore this was the LAST TIME I would EVER run a marathon. And 4.2 two miles later I was thinking of which to run next… and so I’m running the Columbus marathon with Ashley in October. We decided today. Yup. A mere 24 hours after surviving the hardest 4 hours and 43 minutes of my life, I chose to do it again.
There’s something wrong with my head!
What have you learned from the races you have trained for?
Are you allergic to poison ivy?
I’m not! Well, not severely like Dave. I had a tiny patch of it once on my ankle. When Dave gets it, man, he gets it. I really do feel bad for him!