Marathon mania (or: does this week *have* to be a drop-back week??)

I’m pretty sure I’ve had the equivalent of a lobotomy as a result of marathon training. And here’s why.

I actually said to Scott after our epic 20 miler last week:

“I’m kinda sad that next week is another drop-back week. I will miss this.” 

Um, what??  Who have I become??
…a marathon maniac, that’s who. This person I never, ever thought I’d become? Well yeah, I’m kinda her and it’s kinda neat being in ‘this’ mode right now. I really honest-to-god never thought I’d see the day.

Hence: lobotomy.

This all sort of came to me while drafting a guest post for Theodora (if you don’t follow her blog, you should – she’s pretty awesome) about being a first-time marathoner. And I got to thinking…hell yeah: I *am* a first-time marathoner. Or about to become one.

…and that ‘become a marathoner’ moment is coming up wicked fast. 

A feeling that hit me like a giant ton of bricks late last week. We actually had our worst run to date last Thursday night (I won’t get into the gory details, I’ll just say I was pretty sure I’d yakking the night away…but thankfully that never happened) and by Friday? Well, I had nothing left. Zero. I was lifeless after teaching class Friday morning but hell bent on getting a run in…a redemption run, if you will. Yet the second I set foot out the door with Scott and walked up to our usual starting point? I literally could *not* force myself to start running. Just couldn’t do it.

And that, my friends…is what I’d like to think of as our marathon training breaking point or wall or whatever you want to call it. My body was just done. Done, done, done. So what did I do this weekend? I didn’t run. I never made up the miles from Friday’s missed run. I didn’t run on Saturday. Or even on Sunday. While your’re reading this, I should hopefully be out getting those redemption miles in and getting my legs back under me. And guess what? I’m totally ok with that fact. I didn’t get all the miles I wanted to last week, my training plan is rather incomplete from that standpoint. But you know what? I’m making this marathon training thing my (our) own and if that means drastically lower miles to end the week, because my body simply couldn’t ‘go’ any longer? So be it. I’m making this my own (a topic you’ll see more on from me this week…). In every sense of the word.

But back to my point here (sorry, totally spazzing while writing this post) — the lobotomy thing.

Yes, I know that this week is a drop-back week. But no, I’m not ALL that happy about it. I mean, sure it’ll be nice not to be on my feet for 3+ hours on Tuesday AM like usual, but I just love, love, love those hours on the road with Scott so much more than I ever thought possible. It’s just crazy to me.

Despite the fact that I’ll miss the epic long run this week, I know my body needs this. So while I may be kicking and screaming on the inside (who kicks and screams over not being able to run 20 miles this week?? See? That’s the lobotomy talking…), I’m going to embrace this week’s drop-back week so I can go full steam ahead the next few weeks.

#MakeItCount, right?

Because guess what? We’re only 6 long runs away from 26.2. 
…yes, it’s *that* close. <—wheeeeee (“wheeee”? who says “whee” at the thought of facing down 26.2 miles?? Lobotomy talking…)


32 thoughts on “Marathon mania (or: does this week *have* to be a drop-back week??)

  1. I completely understand where you’re coming from! Running is completely unexplainable. There is a drive to get out there and do it like no other I’ve ever had with exercising. I’m a newbie and still don’t consider myself a runner (I don’t know if I will ever call myself a runner and my friends all chuckle at this since I am running regularly). I set out for a walk yesterday alone (Tony was gone for the day) and ended up running. I have to admit, it felt strange running without him by my side. There’s a certain comfort I get running next to him. Don’t get me wrong, I did enjoy it, but for completely different reasons. I had a bizarre free feeling setting out for a walk and turning it into a run! My body is not perfect and it struggles from time to time, but I love what my legs can do!

    I love your honesty in this post! Hopefully those legs are working for you this morning!

    • I just LOVE where you’re heading with your own running journey, it is SO fun to hear how it’s already changing so much for you every single time you set out for a run. I REALLY love that your solo walk turned into a solo run just out of the blue, spur of the moment. How awesome are you?? I find that I sometimes DO like the solo runs once I get out there…they are few and far between but once I do it, I find that it’s a nice change of pace here and there, true “me” time, ya know?

      And PS. PLEASE call yourself a runner…you are a true runner in every sense of the word. Believe it.

  2. I think you’re smart to rest it up. You know your body better than anyone else…and running isn’t new to you. The distance is, but the running, no. You know what you need and love, and if that means rest and leaving behind some “junk miles” then so be it. Right? I’m so proud of you…and I bet you have a great run today. I’m off to check on you on Twitter. 😉

    • Exactly. I knew that it would be a junky, AWFUL run on Friday. The second I even started to run I knew it so I literally stopped in my tracks, walked for about a mile and called it quits. Best decision ever. No guilt whatsoever.

  3. Smart sis, so smart. I am glad you never made up those miles, I am glad that you are excited to get your long runs in and I am also thinking that you WILL actually love this week’s drop back week even if a little sad about it 😉 I’ll still be virtual sherpa’ing tomorrow morning! Can’t wait! 🙂 (lobotomy here too!)

    • I’m really glad too. You KNOW I grappled with the fact that I lost those miles last week but after I got to thinking about it, more and more, I knew it would be junk and not worth it at all. It pays to listen huh?? (PS I can’t wait to virtual sherpa run together tomorrow!!! so proud of you!!)

  4. Obviously your body is screaming at you for a break – and I’m so glad you’re listening!! That’s why our training calls for drop-back weeks. Recovery is a beautiful thing. 🙂
    Hope you’re enjoying your run this morning!

    • YES. My body was screaming hella loud and clear on Friday. I already knew this week would be a drop-back week but last week sort of ended up closing out on an early start to that with that skipped run on Friday. And it was the smartest move I could’ve made. I know that now. (after I got over being frustrated over it).

      And I did enjoy the run today, it was perfect running weather and just what I needed – sweaty good fun!

  5. Sounds like your being really smart with your miles. It’s about quality not quantity and if taking days off means you’ll be rested and stronger then do it! Recovery is just as important as running and with 6 longs runs to go you still have a lot of miles to cover! Your doing so awesome, I’m impressed!

    • I’m trying like hell to be smart with this thing…even when my stubborn side comes out (which is OFTEN these days, haha). Recovery is SO SO important, I totally embrace that and am looking forward to that this week, especially.

  6. Great post–and sometimes not sticking to a set schedule and listening to how your body feels is the way to go.

    I keep reading this post and can only imagine the runners high you get after those 20 milers!

    • I sometimes have a hard time ignoring the schedule and going with feel so even though I struggled to let go of those miles on Friday because it was “ruining” the plan, I am glad I stuck to my decision and didn’t opt to make them up just because the plan said so. Well worth it for better running miles this week!

      • great point! This kind of reminds me of dieting and how before if I indulged the night before I would try and cut calories the next day. It ultimately just left me mad at myself, it kind of reminds me of running and not needing to add extra junk miles to hit a certain mileage for the week

  7. Yeah, you need a break.
    I always tell myself – I will start running. But I never do it. I used to run a lot in past but now? Need motivation for that 😀
    So I’m really impressed by how much you love it. Keep going 🙂

  8. Drop-back weeks are SO important and it does sound like you need and are ready for a little break. I’m glad to hear that you’re not pushing it and that you’re resting a bit. I LOVE that you are loving this whole process and experience. And I love that you do want more.

    • I’m quite honestly proud of myself for not letting my stubborn side cloud my judgement on this one, haha. So yeah, this week’s drop back is not only needed but welcomed…even if I kinda/sorta miss the 20 mile high, haha. Lobotomy!!!

  9. I think it’s totally ok to kick and scream about the dropback week—go for it, feel whatever you feel, cuz that’s one of the points of training for a marathon right? …To just feel more emotions and stuff, whatever they are!

    And 6 more long runs….holy cow ! 🙂

    • Ha, thank you for ‘getting’ me on this one my friend! I did kick and scream a bit as I thought about my plan for the week but after I let the idea settle in a bit more, I got past it pretty quickly. hehe 😉

      6 more long runs is CRAZY isn’t it??

  10. 6 weeks to go with a 20-miler already in the bag? You are WELL on your way to becoming a marathoner. Listen to the body. It will let you know when it needs a rest and when it is ready to go. Ease back into your runs after the few days off. Take it slow and you’ll be back to KICKING ass like normal.

    • You made my DAY with this comment, my friend. I needed a reminder that I’m indeed working my ass off and working it towards 26.2 in a good, smart way but also doing it MY way which is so important to me!! I’m starting to get really excited for the big day now!! whee!

  11. Seriously, I am so excited for you! Since my marathon isn’t happening, I’m running through you, okay? I love how the brain shifts and you start to crave running. Those endorphins, the time pounding the pavement and sharing that time with someone else is priceless!

    • You can certainly run through me — anytime at all my dear. I’m rooting for you as you recover…I know you’ll get that marathon ‘high’ as soon as you’re fully healed for sure. And in the meantime, feel free to run through me anytime at all. I’m here for ya 😉

  12. You’re doing incredible with your training. Your body probably just needs a rest, but great that you’re honouring it. Great training plan. I’m in a workout funk, will always love cardio but have pretty much zero motivation to do weights.

    • Aw workout funks are NO fun. Maybe you need to try something ENTIRELY new to you to really shock the system and to re-energize you as it relates to your weight workouts?? It’s too bad there aren’t any barre studios near you (you knew I’d say that haha)!!

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