Week 11 of Chicago Marathon training--check! I'm not going to lie, this marathon training thing is really starting to take a toll on my body! Every since my 15 miler last week, my legs have been struggling a little bit. In fact, it took me just about the entire last week to recover! I remember feeling like that during my training for my very first half, when every single long run was a new and terrifying distance. I guess I've finally reached those new and terrifying distances in marathon training! My poor legs...
Loving my foam roller these days!
Last week I felt AWESOME after finishing 15 miles, but when I woke up Sunday morning I could barely get out of bed! All week long my right leg was feeling tight and knotty--quad, hip, hammy, you name it! I skipped my 8 mile run Wednesday afternoon in favor of some rest and foam rolling (and a late night at school followed by Panera if you want the truth...). I hadn't skipped any runs because of aching legs this training cycle (only out of busyness or laziness...), so I figured missing this one would be just fine. Friday night I relaxed with some pasta, gatorade, and Breaking Bad. Do you watch that show? It's uh.mazing. I just finished the Netflix episodes--can't wait to get started on the current season!
Runner's Dinner :)
By the time Saturday morning rolled around, my leg felt much better, although still not 100%. I prayed to the running gods that everything would shake out and that I would be able to get through my 16 miler without terrible pain. Definitely some anxiety going on on my drive to the running group at 5:30am! (And some extreme tiredness...I will never get used to early mornings...) The running gods must have been listening, though, because I did make it through the run. It wasn't quite as smooth sailing as last week's 15, but luckily my leg did loosen up and I kept plugging along. My pace group has been running 5/1 intervals during our training, but this week half way through the run we switched to 5/2. I probably could have kept going with the 5/1s, but even so I was definitely grateful for the longer rest periods! And for the group company that kept me going, especially one woman in her 60s who I dug deep with at the very end as we ran the final stretch back to our site. (Yes, when you are in the back of the pack you will find yourself running with people more than twice your age. I probably should be embarrassed that I can't keep up with the other 26 year olds, but I secretly love running with these ladies. Or not-so-secretly. :)
Miraculously, my legs felt better the day after 16 after having been aching all week long than they did after my strong 15-miler. Chalk it up to drinking some extra gatorade, taking some CalMagZinc, and stretching a bunch right after finishing, I guess?!
I remarked to my pace group that I still can't believe I am running these distances. I thought back to how, when I first started running half marathons, runs of seven and eight miles felt so long, and ten milers were an eternity. I can't believe this is my "new normal"! I love it. :) Anyways, here's hoping my legs take less than a week to recover this time! Next Saturday we step back to 12 miles--can't believe I'm saying this, but I can't wait to run ONLY 12!!