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Posts Tagged ‘taper’

You know it’s marathon week…

I know it’s marathon week when….

*coworker is hacking up a lung next to me (see here)

*work is obnoxiously busy

*weird body parts ache…wtf why does that hurt?

*expo and the ability to buy more crap I don’t really need

*butterflies…yep, still the same even after 8 of these

*neurotic about everything – see above for evidence of that

*sluggish and pondering why the hell I want to do this again?

*trying to hide from the sugar (Hello Halloween candY!)

*wanting to eat everything in sight

*Emergen-C is my best friend

*Professional runners in Central Park (friend saw Ritz and we were so engrossed listening to her we missed him!)

*hitting the snooze bar is definitely a cool thing to do!

 

this is how you start to feel from NOT running!

 

 

Anything else to add to the list?

As for running, met the Speedy Sasquatch crew for a shake out the legs run in Central Park. A few pickups at MP and kept the legs loose.  One more run Friday AM, a bridges run of course, then it’s game time.

I’ve started gathering my stuff for the wait out at Ft Wadsworth: Fleece sweatshirt/pants, hand and foot warmers, old sheet to sit on…

Also, if you have an iPhone, there is a glitch with the daylight savings.   Make sure you either set a real alarm clock.  Many people were an hour late last week: http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20101101/tc_afp/britaintechnologyiphone

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Taper me silly

Well kids, it’s time.  Time to get the nerves going and rest the body for the main event.  Less than 2 weeks until I face the next challenge in my year of 30.  We don’t need to get my nerves rattled any more now so I’m going to go into a topic most runners hate: the taper!

For many of us, we have different philosophies that we think make us better runners on race day.  Whether it’s giving up alcohol for the marathon training period (did that once and NEVER again), sweets, etc.  For me the taper comes down to a few very important ingredients: lots of rest, basic workouts to calm the nerves, food/hydration and fun.

1) Rest – this is important but oddly enough my past 2 marathons have been marked by ridiculously crazy work weeks the week before the marathon.  I also tend to get crazy insomnia.  I’m not sure if it’s from going 5000 miles an hour to a snail’s pace or what but I have major sleeping issues at times.  However, I make sure to get a really good sleep two nights before.  I remember my first NYCM I slept 2 hours the night before.  I was so unbelievably nervous.  Sleep has come easier with each passing marathon but I still get those little jitters the night before.  I guess for me it’s what keeps me going.  Why do it if you don’t see the excitement?  Beyond right before the marathon, I’m big on getting 7-8 hours of sleep a night for the 2 weeks leading to a race.

2) Workouts.  My dad says it best “you can always run too much but never too little during a taper.” So true.  For Marine Corps and Boston I ran 1x the week of the race.  Between craziness of work and trying to get my zzz’s, sometimes it just doesn’t happen.  You know what? It’s OK!  You’ve done the training.  Trust the training.  There is NOTHING you can do to benefit from lots of running those last days.  I’ve found getting a last tempoish run in a week and a half before won’t hurt but the week of absolutely not. Side note: Had my last ‘speed’ workout tonight

3) Food/hydration – this is a biggie.  Many of us “freak” over gaining a couple of pounds as the big day approaches.  It’s normal.  You’re storing.  That doesn’t mean go out and eat big steak dinners or cupcakes…but you’re eating balanced meals to start storing for race day.  For me, since I have a crazy sensitive stomach, I cut off things with a lot of fiber two days before the race.  Obviously you may have an iron stomach but mine goes insane at the drop of a pin.  Awful but I’ve learned to deal with it.  I carb up with pasta and ‘happy carbs’, the complex stuff.

Hydration wise I become obsessed.  The week of the race you will not find me sans a water bottle.  The day before? I better be near a bathroom .  I’ll mix Gatorade with water (hate the pure sugar stuff).  Whether or not it makes a full difference, up to you but it’s worked for me!

4) fun – This is the time to do things you couldn’t do while training!  Not that we don’t enjoy the training aspect but it’s a chance to enjoy the downtime.  Get your mind off of the task ahead.  For me, I’ve got 3 birthday parties this weekend (GO Leos!) as well as getting ready for a vacation with a little run in there;)

My thoughts on alcohol/coffee/etc:  I tried to cut alcohol from my diet in 2008 for Chicago.  Honestly, all it did was make me cranky.  I don’t drink enough to really make a difference but I’ll be honest: I like a good ice-cold beer or glass of wine.  I’m still unsure how I made it 3 months on the wagon.  NEVER again;)  That said I generally cut out alcohol a minimum of 4 days before but generally a week before.

With that time for me to hit the sack and make good on my taper-me-silly.

What do you do for a taper?  How do you prepare for a big race?

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The final countdown

Well, it’s Friday. Taper week is getting ready to end. No more rehearsals. It’s time to go out and take care of business. I’m ready and anxious to get the show on the road. 578.08 miles put in for official training this go around. A 20 miler in Central Park after working all day, running in the pre-dawn hours more than I care to count, etc. This journey has definitely been much different than the previous two. The results? I guess Sunday will tell me but I feel ready. I feel good.

Scranton, you ready for me? You better be because here I come!

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