Marathon training is nothing short of a mental and physical roller coaster. My friend, Laura, who I will share the course with on Sunday (albeit from several minutes behind), said it best here.
While I absolutely love the process of training for a marathon (so far more than I have ever loved any actual marathon itself), this training cycle was definitely not all cupcakes and rainbows.
…I didn’t want to get out of my warm bed at 5 a.m. on a cold winter morning.
…My legs felt heavy. My body felt tired. I didn’t feel like I could run another mile.
…It was raining.
…I was traveling and jet lagged.
Some days it was just plain hard.
…I felt like I could fly. The paces came easy and splits were right on target.
….I chatted away with a friend and the miles just disappeared.
…I couldn’t wait to get my shoes on and get out the door for a run.
Some days it was so very easy.
…I woke up facing 20 solo miles and the prospect was daunting.
…I looked at my training plan and was terrified at what the next week would bring.
Some days it was overwhelming.
When things got hard and I was hurting and felt like I had nothing left, I would repeat to myself over and over, “This is what PR’s are made of.” I would remind myself that pushing harder right then, at that moment, when I felt like I couldn’t give any more, was going to get me to my goal.
Now I can only rely on all of those moments, and when I feel like giving in at mile 23, 24 or 25 remind myself to not let all of that work be for nothing. I need to get tough and remember why my goal is so important to me.
I made it through 14 tough weeks of training and 2 mentally challenging and emotional weeks of taper.
And now…I am ready to race.