PEAK WEEK IS OVER. In exactly 3 weeks time I will have run a marathon. There’s no more fitness left to gain, and instead it’s time to taper off until race day. I guess that means my marathon eating has to taper off as well.
That means, there are no more 7am Saturday morning wake-ups, or going to bed early in preparation for the next morning’s run. Or mapping out a 20-mile route and obsessively checking the weather.
I’ll be honest, I really enjoyed marathon training. I loved how great the runs made me feel and the straight-up euphoria you get at the end of a long, long run. However, having a 16, 17, 18, or 20-mile run hanging over your head all week when you have a busy weekend, can get a bit stressful.
That being said – let’s get on with it!
I was expecting a lovely strengthening/toning session but instead there was a sub and it turned into a crazy cardio-strength training-circuit of hell. I was dripping sweat, and my legs were shaking by the time the class ended. Burpees, mountain climbers, jumping jackets, the works.
I felt really strong while running this week. Maybe it was knowing I had less than a week left and then it was time to taper, or maybe the last 14 weeks are actually working and I’m in running shape. Whatever the reason, I was pumped to run. Kindle, treadmill, same deal… different week. 8:57/pace with the last mile at an 8:20 pace.
Wednesday – 8 Mile Run
Exact repeat of Tuesday, only a longer run.
Thursday – 5 Mile Run + Pilates Reformer Class
I got my run out-of-the-way on my lunch-hour and went to Pilates after work. I had second-thoughts since I had plans to run 20 miles Friday morning, but decided it couldn’t hurt.
Friday – 21 MILE RUN
Yes, the training plan called for 20, but Lexi and I felt it was important to at least get to 21. 22 could have happened if our stomachs wouldn’t have been absolutely famished and craving cheeseburgers in the worst possible way.
For the first time in my entire life I ran in a long-sleeved shirt. I figured if it’s going to be chilly on marathon day I should at least have some practice running in something aside from my Nike Tempos. (Although let’s be real – I’ll still run the marathon in my tempos, rain or shine.)
We set off for the Golden Gate bridge and ran over to the Marin side and back while it rained, hailed, and gale-force winds blew in our faces. I think at one point we were screaming to each other the winds were so loud.
From there we went up through the Presidio, through Sea Cliff, and around to the Great Highway. There are few things as stunningly gorgeous as the cliffs and bluffs of SF on a clear morning. (Of course the rain let up as soon as we were off the bridge).
We watched the surfers and the waves crash as we ran, turning around at the end of Ocean Beach. At that point, cheeseburgers were pretty much the only thing keeping us going. Note to selves – 2 packs of Gu Chomps and a bigger breakfast will be necessary come race day.
We talked about just about every possible subject, including lots o’ marathon talk. Lexi’s run a couple of marathons before, but we both agreed to run the entire thing together. Our pace is really close, and since we started our training together, we were going to finish it together. Besides, how much more fun is 26.2 miles when you get to chat, laugh, and push each other to run faster to the finish?
Overall the run felt fantastic, and we both agreed we can’t wait to run the marathon! The hard work we’ve put in over the last almost 4 months has definitely paid off. I still can’t believe I’m able to run 20+ miles and finish strong, happy, and with energy left. Seriously, a year ago I had sworn off any distance longer than 13.1. For life.
Balboa Burgers were our reward after almost 4 hours of running:
I’m ashamed to say I’ve never had a Balboa Burger in 4+ years of living in SF. Did not disappoint. Will be back weekly. Medium with sautéed mushrooms and cheddar on a baguette.
We were also hungry 5 minutes after inhaling these plates.
Saturday – REST
And by “rest” I mean spend 8 hours wine-tasting in Napa and then another 2 eating and drinking at the wedding reception of 2 very good friends. I think I ate and drank all. day. long, and it was so much fun – congrats Steve and Courtney!
After sleeping in until 10:30, a power nap from 2-3, and more water than I can keep track of, boyfriend and I headed to the gym to get in a workout. We also headed to Restoration Hardware to check out some things and I want to outfit the entire apartment in absolutely everything they sell, but that’s neither here nor there.
After drinking my body weight in wine on Saturday, the 5 miles went by shockingly fast… even though I’m fairly certain I was sweating out Cabernet. Which in my opinion is a darn waste of Cabernet.
Time to enjoy what’s left of Sunday night… and then the taper (and my birthday week!) begins!
Hope you had a great weekend!