Always learning

It’s finally here. It’s event week once again. Looking back over the past 4 1/2 months I’ve learned a lot from training this time around, and for the first time I arrive at the Georgia Marathon fully trained, and ready to go. That wasn’t the case when I attempted my first marathon with the 2008 ING Georgia Marathon. I got hurt, and was severely under-trained. I’ve learned a lot about training and myself this time around:

  • I can actually make it through a training cycle without falling or tripping over things. It’s rather refreshing.
  • Over-training is a very real thing, and thanks to a friend, and an ice/snow storm that shut down Atlanta I was able to recover, and get back on track.
  • Rest is just as important as running, and when things bother you, it’s better to rest, and let them heal.
  • Dream goals are good, but so are realistic ones. In Chicago the goal was semi-realistic. This time I know I can hit my goal. I’m still a little nervous about it, which is good, but I know I can do this. For the first time in a long time I’m excited about starting the race. I’m just taking things one day at a time, and one run at a time.
  • So, back to that realistic goal thing, and not over-training, it’s important to train for where you are now. Otherwise you can get hurt, and then it’s going to be even harder to get to your dream goals. I have a bad habit of reading people’s workouts on dailymile, and trying to push myself to be in the same place. I’m learning more, and more that a quality run doesn’t mean fast. I’m excited to see what will happen if I keep training smart!
  • Taper doesn’t mean that you just shut everything down for three weeks (or 2 weeks). This time I’ve kept the strength training and yoga going through the taper, and I know it’s making a difference. It’s not as hard as it normally is, but I don’t feel like I’m losing all of the strength I’ve work so hard to find. Taper just means things are shorter.
  • I’ve found lots of new things that help. Like Honey Stinger gels, Trigger points foam roller, my new pair of Newton racers, and HellaSound workouts.

A few people I need to thanks:

  • Andrea & Julie – you two are the best training buddies!! I loved our runs together through any kind of weather, even the post ice/snow storm! And breakfast afterwards was always so much fun
  • Ken – thank you for telling me to cool it! I’m really glad that we’re running the race together on Sunday. I think it’s going to be a really great day!
  • DailyMile community – Thank you for all of the support, and encouragement! It’s such a privilege to be a part of such a supportive group of people.

When I look back on the 2008 Georgia Marathon, and then look at where I am now I can’t believe how far I’ve come. The first time around it took 5 hours 46 minutes. On Sunday I’ll find out just how far I really have come. I know it will be a completely different runner that starts and finishes 26.2 miles Sunday. I’m excited, nervous, and ready to get going. But first, I have to figure out what the heck I’m going to wear!

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