i still know nothing. tell me everything. i want to run the hell out of marathon #5

15 weeks til I run this damn thing. Everyone is in training mode now, for better and for worse. I have some running friends who have become tough to be around. i love talking about marathon training (clearly), but sometimes people get in this mode where they become a walking regurgitation of whatever the latest “Runners World’ article posted about speed workouts, or whatever their coach said about tempo pace is the the ONLY truth in running…I know for myself I need to stay in a positive headspace, and I need to have a training plan that I am confident in.

that said.
i’ve decided to start working with a coach. i’m super excited about this. a few weeks ago on mile 40 something of a 55 mile week, i was slogging through another run and feeling like absolute shit. i ran into a woman on my team and told her what a tough time i was having. long story short. she’s now coaching me for the new york marathon! she’s a really strong runner, and as a coach, leads a lot of the information sessions for our team. i feel really lucky.
on my own i’ve gone from a 10mm runner to a 7:45mm runner. i’ve completed 4 full marathons and 6 half marathons. i’ve broken 4 hours in my last marathon, and i know i have a 3:45 in me. but i suddenly don’t know how to get better. for every effort i make to follow a plan, i wind up over-doing it. i am not running races smartly. i am not spacing my workouts out well. i am perpetually exhausted. so i need help! and i’m so excited to be working with her.
on saturday i ran with nbr, we did a cool 15 mile course to rockaway beach. this was such fun run. typically long run route’s are planned to have us loop back to our neighborhood. it was so great having a destination run! i felt pretty good for all fifteen miles- and it was hot hot hot, and there was not much shade. it felt great knowing that if i can run in this sludge, that come fall, i’ll be feeling great. there were about six of us in my pace group, and we more or less stayed together throughout. a few water stops were made, and i did use the world’s scariest gas station bathroom…but we made it. the last 1.5 miles i was on my own, and was just thinking about how grateful i am that this is my saturday. that i know people who love running as much as i do. that i have people to get training advice from. that i know people crazy enough to run 15 miles to the beach. that i am no longer stuck. that i am no longer in a dangerous and terrible relationship. that i no longer wake up on saturdays scared to get out of bed. that my body is mine again. that i am stronger than i knew, and i will keep pushing myself. i feel so lucky.
we made it down to the beach- and i have to say- run fifteen miles- and then put your feet in the damn ocean- it is THE BEST FEELING EVER.
the run ended with a sweet ferry ride back to williamsburg- also lots of fun. it was extra cool riding past the Verazanno bridge, oh, you know, the casual first mile of the New York Marathon…
Yesterday I did a shakeout 5 miles, and then received an email with some good news from my new coach. i get to take it pretty easy the next two weeks! i will scale my mileage back to 35-40 miles per week and do a lot of easy runs. i haven’t really given my body a chance to recover. from there i will start implementing quality runs in at marathon pace.
i am feeling much more confident about my plan having guidance. i really knew in my heart that the plan i was on was going to leave me burnt out and hating running. i feel re-pumped and so super excited for NY!
in one other small bit of news- I raced a 5k last monday in sweltering humidity and while i didn’t meet my goal (perhaps the casual 16 miles i ran the day before hurt those chances…) i was pretty happy with my time overall, and it was fun doing a short race for once.
15 weeks to go.

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