Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Race Junkie

My name is Alisyn and I am addicted to - - - racing...Apparently. In the last two months I have ran a total of 8 races. That includes: three half marathons, four 5k’s, a 6 miler, and I have a trail race this Sunday to boot. I love it though. And I don’t care about the race fees or anything associated. It’s a healthy addiction right? Or is it? Like all good addictions something is always compromised and my racing in no exception.
I am running my 2nd marathon at the end of September, The Half Moon Bay International Marathon, and I am freaking out. I have not run over 14 miles since I popped my marathon cherry back in January of this year. I now have a tad less than nine weeks to squish in those long runs. I am scared shitless to say the least, for I have let racing interfere with my training cycle without even realizing it.

I will let you in on a little secret – I am not confident in my long distance running abilities. I love to run; it’s true, but running for 26.2 miles at a time – Yikes. My goal is to run a sub 4, but I fear I will be defeated. Why am I being such a wuss? I know I can do it. I have done it before; I can certainly do it again. In the end it’s all mind over matter, right? The fact is, I fear disappointment. I want to be just as fast in long distance running as I am in short. Am I expecting too much? And where is that magic wand that I can wave and suddenly…POOF – I can run long distances with ease and desired pace?
Got Sweat?
For the next nine weeks, I am cutting down the races I participate in as it can no longer affect my marathon training plan. I will work hard to conquer my long distance running fear and create a few more goals in case I don’t end up running a sub 4. I am humbled by the running community for I have learned so much in the last few years and certainly have more to learn from each and every one of you. I would love and value any tips or suggestions from you veteran marathon runners out there.

So here goes nothing…. On your marks, get set, GO!


naomi said...

i know what you mean about race addiction. i just took a look at all the races i have for the rest of the year and thought, "why did i do this?"

IanM said...

I firmly believe that anyone can train to run a marathon and enjoy it whilst doing it in a reasonable time too.
My first marathon was 4:05. I haven't raced one for a year or two now but my PB stands at 3:01:54 and my 35 mile time at 4:43.
I'm not bragging though, I just want you to see what's possible even from a middle aged ordinary bloke off the street.
There is no secret, it's just many months of consistent effort. Just get out there and run, every day if you can or at least every other day.
Don't fall into the trap of always running at the same pace though, or the same distance. Most of your running should be done at a relatively easy pace for you. Very little of your running should be fast stuff really but it does help to introduce threshold runs at some point.
If I were you I'd do a max heart rate and a resting heart rate test so then you can work out what effort levels are actually easy and hard. This is the main mistake people make - they think they are only jogging but actually they run too fast all the time which doesn't elicit the training response required.
Let me know if you need any more help/advice, I'll be only too happy to help.