As many of you may know, I am a running fanatic. At the begining of 2015 I had planned to run five half marathons within the year, and the training was intense then. However, my goal for 2016 is to run a full marathon in April. (EEK!) So in January, I decided that it was time to up my game. I knew it would be pretty tough, but boy do you learn so much when you start pushing your body to its limits.
Here are -10- thoughts that I have noticed I had picked up as a runner in training for their first full marathon.
- “The rain will not stop me from going out today.”
Whilst everyone is tucked up in bed on a cold, wet Monday morning, you had already planned to start your week with a little ten miler and the rain will not stop you. Back in the day when you put off that run because “It wasn’t so nice out” excuse had to stop… Because nothing is now getting in your way!
- “Maybe not tonight…”
Avoiding plans for pints at the pub with your bestie’s is common occurance now because you have ‘long run day’ in the morning and you need to be fresh for it. In fact, having a social life is pretty much frowned upon now. Work, run, sleep, no play. Sums up the life of a marathon runner. *sob*
- “Not feeling so great, maybe a run will sort this out.”
Feeling a ‘little under the weather’ will not stop you from throwing some junk miles into the pot. In fact, you are so used to pulling on those trainers in the morning that you believe running will solve most things. Hangovers, sadness, that time of the month… NOTHING WILL STAND IN YOUR WAY!
- “Oh, only did a short 9 miler today.”
The word hated most by non runners. ‘Only.’ For us in training, our shorter miles have increased in mileage since we realised we had to run a tasty 26 miles in just one setting…
- “Pizza? Well, I did run 17 miles today.”
We now have the perfect excuse to eat all the foods that we want. Yey! Pudding? Well, of course!
- “Watching what I eat has now become a thing.”
However, I have also learnt that my body is a machine, so if I fuel it correctly, it will then reward me with great amounts of energy. Good carbs for the win!
- “This running malarkey thing is becoming tedious…”
There is a point when you start to get a little fed up with your training. Trying to mix it up with different routes, interval training and then there is running with weights… *shudders* But you are just not quite as satisfied as you used to be. This is the perfect opportunity to begin cross training. Swimming and HIIT workouts (or any sort of weight training) becomes very appealing when runners block takes place. Which gets you looking out for other ways of working out. Yoga? Why not! Boot camp? Sure thing! Pole dancing? Maybe not…
- “3 days with no running… Am I going to even remember how to run?”
Running has become a part of your every day life. So when you do take time out, whether it’s for an injury, a holiday or just because you are completely exhausted, you worry like mad. Suddenly every move is well thought out. Will I lose muscle mass? Will I gain weight? What if l begin to hate running? What if I just can’t run?!? Running psychosis. Something you can not run away from… Har Har!
- “Running is my life.”
Another factor of becoming a marathon runner is that you realise your life has changed forever. As dramatic as it sounds, when you go without it feels like some sort of withdrawal. The drug you constantly need. You become that annoying person who talks about running within every conversation, like its the child you had just months prior. You talk of the growth in your training, the progress, and the lovely routes you find. Times and miles are something you keep logged up, ready to spout off to friends in happiness of your hard work. When you find another who is also interested in pounding the pavements, you are suddenly best friends. Until you realise their average pace is better than yours… Back to the drawing board!
- “The marathon is near… what will my next goal be?”
You have 10 weeks until the big day. You have worked hard, and the efforts you have put into training is in full effect. You are perfecting your time, eating better, throwing in some great milage week by week… However the feeling of just getting to that start line is overwhelming. You want to embrace this day, yet you know it is also a fearful moment. A great experience not quite like another.
I want to enjoy my first, as it is never quite like any other race you do, but what happens when you cross that finish line? You fast forward to the end and all that hard work has gone into this one race. What is next for me? I am guessing that it will feel like the holiday blues, how does life carry on from this? The anti-climax of finishing something that you have spent months working on. The project of an adrenaline junkie.
I have spoke to other runners who have ran a full marathon and they say that this is the point where you will probably chose to do another marathon. Or even an ‘Ultra’ run. Something I could never actually imagine doing myself… but who knows? Will I get the marathon running bug? Will I constantly be in search of a new running high?
Lets rewind. For now, I am enjoying my marathon training and shall embrace every second.
Not going to lie, I am s*it scared. However, I can imagine it will be an amazing experience.
Bring it on!
Running the Manchester Marathon on April the 10th. Keep updated via my Instagram & Twitter!