Friday, January 23, 2015

Moving On

Alright folks. I've blabbed enough about my last marathon. Time to move on... to blabbing about the next one.

There’s no real reason to do another marathon before the Trials. With the qualifier in my pocket, I could take this season “off” and focus on speed (or “speed” to a marathoner, meaning 10Ks, 10 milers, and half-marathons).

So I don’t need to run a marathon in 2015. But I want to.

Of course, there may be benefits to not running one. (Like actually having some speed/not having to use quotes when I type that word.) But I tried that once. Maybe it made me a better runner in the end, but it wasn’t as much fun.

During my first season with GRC I stepped down in distance and ran races from the half marathon to 6K cross country. I struggled, maybe with the newness of the team (doubtful, I loved them), maybe with iron deficiency (likely), maybe because I just couldn’t get in the groove of that kind of training (possibly). I like having one peak race at the end of the season, and other races and efforts rising in a slow crescendo, building on each other to the ultimate culmination, the hardest and longest effort: the marathon.

Besides, I’m not doing this out of obligation or to make millions (unless you'd like to give me millions?), I’m doing it for fun. And fun for me is 26.2 miles of glorious pain.

In a recent post on Zelle, Dane Rauschenberg lists 52 reasons to run a marathon. His first reason: “While you can get an amazing high from tackling any race distance, conquering the mother of all races gives you a high which is hard to duplicate.” The amazing effort and triumph of the last one, the drug-like euphoria that came with it, the celebrations, the ice cream sundaes—it just makes me want to earn that again. 26.2 miles, one of the most addictive drugs out there.

One of my teammates put together a post on what I had done last season (compared to previous seasons) to get the qualifying standard. (His conclusion? Not much.) In his analysis, he surmised—correctly—that I sacrifice time and performance at other distances for success in the marathon. It’s true, my PRs for ten miles and the half marathon don’t stack up to my marathon time. (And don’t get me started on 5Ks.) And that doesn't really bother me. I’ve said it before on this blog: all I really care about is the marathon.

I’ll be cautious this year; the most important thing will be to not get hurt before next February. But barring major disasters, the second goal will be—as always—to get faster. I’ve got a bit of extra confidence in my training after last season’s successes, so I’ll take it much the same way: roughly a race once a month, building to the marathon.

So *drumroll please*… this season’s schedule:

Rock-n-Roll USA Half Marathon (March)
Cherry Blossom Ten Miler (April)
Broad Street Ten Miler (May… in Philadelphia…)
Grandma’s Marathon (June)

Will I be able to catch the same fire I did last season? Will I be able to beat Brother in the City of Brotherly Love Family Duels RunnerTeal Fails? Will I earn a post-marathon ice cream sundae that's as hugely delicious? I don’t know. But I’m going to try.

Stay tuned.

Dream big(ger),

1 comment :

  1. Hi, Wonderful blog. For many runners, the marathon is a goal that’s always there in the back of their minds. It is a distance that has the capability to break you and bring you to incredible lows. Successful marathoners are physically and mentally stronger over the last 4 miles of the marathon than marathoners who fail to meet their goals. I have noticed that Building and maintaining your running base is a simple yet powerful way to crush your running goals .