Friday, June 28, 2013

1st Marathon Training Begins

Hi all!

I am about to start training for my first marathon, the Detroit Free Press Marathon on October 20.
In many ways, I have been training for over two years for this race, but this will be the beginning of my training geared specifically to this race. I have decided to follow the Hal Higdon "Novice 2" Marathon training. There are several reasons why I am choosing this training course instead of the Intermediate training or another, more intense program which I think I could handle. One main reason is that I want to keep long runs primarily on Saturdays while many of the other runs push you towards Sunday long runs. There were reasons for this on the other programs and I didn't think it would be ideal to mess with this item. Another thing I like about the program I chose is that I has 5 days of activity per week (4 runs, 1 cross training day) rather than 6. I've experienced the best results in my training when I run 4 to 5 times a week and find those rest days essential to recover.

Overall, the idea is to have a long run on Saturday, cross train on Sunday, rest Monday, run various distances Tues - Thurs and rest Friday. I'm sure there will be occasions where I will need to mix it up, but I think this schedule is doable. 


This past weekend I ran the Open Door Julie Run 5k. This is the 5th time out of 6 years running this race, which I participated in a couple times before I really started running again. It is an important race to me, being my first 5k race as an adult, the site of my current 5k PR and it supports the Open Door Outreach Center, which provides food and other assistance to people in my community.

The weather forecasters said that it might rain or even storm, but we ended up with a nice day with a bit of heat and humidity. We arrived fairly early and got our bibs and shirts (both my daughter and I were running) and I walked a couple laps on the track. There was still almost a half hour until race time after my "warmup", so I just kinda wandered around and hung out with the family. My mom was in town and came to the race and was encouraging me to get a massage from the group that was offering them before and after the race. I declined, mostly because I subscribe to the school of not doing anything out of the ordinary prior to a race. In hindsight, I should have gotten that massage and it may have helped.

As race time neared, Princess C and I went to the start line. She thought it was a good time to start messing with me, poking me, stepping on my shoes, etc. She was just trying to tease me, but I was not amused at all. I was trying to get into the right mental space to run and don't like to be messed with at that time. Once I articulated this instead of growling at her, she understood and was much nicer. :) The 10k started first and the we lined up in our spot. Knowing from past events that people don't line up where they should (fast runners in front, slow in back is a concept many cannot grasp), I made sure I was close to the starting line. The starter had the bull horn make a lame noise and we were off.

My legs felt crummy from the start, which was unfortunate because otherwise I felt pretty good. My pace was good to start and through the first half mile and most of the first mile, I was where I wanted to be. (I recall wishing that I had the legs I had just a week earlier during my long run.) I really started to hurt in my sides and back after about a mile and a half and that bothered me much more than my legs. I avoided looking at the watch much, but knew after a couple miles that this definitely would not be a PR day. 

I was frustrated because I felt good as far as my breathing and energy, but there always seems to be a limiting factor to these races and my legs and how my back felt was it this day.


I wrote this post almost a week ago and just finished it up now. Think I'll call it a post and do a fresh one soon. :)


  1. such a pain when you just have those bad race days. next time for sure! excited you are starting marathon training. You will love it and hate it all in one :)

  2. Thanks. I should have finished the post where I still managed to get 3rd place in my age group, so it wasn't all bad. :)

    Looking forward to marathon training and race. 4 months is both a long time and a short time to get ready...