I am so excited today about marathon training. I had a breakthrough during my long run over the weekend and today I accomplished a goal I'd been working on for weeks now. It's all very encouraging.
So first off I'm calling this week 2b because I am repeating last week's training. My chosen marathon is three weeks after I am scheduled to finish the training, allowing me to build those extra weeks into the training and use them where I need. I was able to find a couple of running buddies (WOOHOO!) and I'm thinking it will be best if we start with six miles instead of seven for our first run together, as one is just getting over being very sick and the other had to take a break for a while. It all works out perfectly. I think we will even be able to keep the same kind of pace. It's so excited to be able to run outside with other people for support and the extra push I need. And, of course, because I'm afraid to run outside by myself. Their original plan was to train for a half, but at least one of them is starting to think about training for a full marathon. Yay for running buddies!
Now for the breakthrough. Every Saturday I run more than I have ever run before. That means it's always kind of hard for me because, well, I've never done it before. This past Saturday was six miles. Once I had finished the first four miles I thought, "There's only two more miles to go. I got this." Only two more miles? Only? Since when have I ever though that anything could be "only" two miles? Along with that, the Hubs came downstairs to put away his camping things and was super impressed when I told him I had a mile left and that I could tell him that without panting. There's a lot to be said for moving at a comfortable pace. Anyway, between those two things, I realized that I don't hate running anymore. That's a first. Now that my body is conditioned to run it's not the horror show of trauma and fatigue it once was. It's the first time I've ever not hated running. In the past I've tolerated it for weight loss purposes and hated every moment of it. Even on my mission when I ran with one of my companions as a way to serve her I wished I was doing pretty much anything else. Anyway, I'm not to the point that I love it, but I don't hate it like I did.
Today's big accomplishment was running 3 non-stop miles on the treadmill at 6 mph. That's only a 10 minute mile, but it's not something I've been able to do in the past. I also feel good about my pace knowing that, in the past, I've run faster outside than on the treadmill. I'm still not fast, but the goal is to finish, not to meet a time goal.
It's really great to meet the goals I've set out for myself and to keep up with the training. I realize that I am in the early phases and that it will only get harder. That's why it's called training. As my body gets more used to the miles I am confident that I will be able to keep up and keep going. The time will pass whether I am training or not, so why not make the most of it? The most motivating things for me are looking back at both building a house and having babies (especially the one labor and delivery that I did without medication). The house was built over the course of seven months, not a week. Gestating my babies takes 40 weeks. Making it through "natural" labor and delivery required preparation and a full day (well, about 13 hours) of pain and concentration. If I can do those things then what's to stop me from training for a marathon? Only me. And I've got this.