I parked my car at FleetFeet this morning planning to run for 45 minutes to an hour. I wasn’t really feeling it. I’m tired, sore and pretty much constantly hungry.
Part of that was the workout that started and ended at FleetFeet on Wednesday evening. Part of that was the 20-miler I ran last Sunday and the 20-miler I’m planning tomorrow. Part of that is, while 56 miles in a week and 91 miles in the last 12 days isn’t a ton for some people, it is a shit ton for a hobby jogger like me.
I logged those miles this morning, jogging along the Eastern Prom, through the East End and the Munjoy Hill neighborhood, then finally up Fore Street, along the Prom again and back to my car at FleetFeet.
Then I stopped at Whole Foods for a salad that I devoured before falling into bed for a nap.
When I signed up for the Chicago Marathon late last year, I knew this time was coming. And I was looking forward to it. After a year and a half of struggling with injuries and burnout and just not giving a shit about running, I was excited to get to work putting in work.
There have been a few hiccups, including that strained hip flexor that is mostly better, but still cries at me once in a while, but I’m putting in the work. I’m running more miles and harder workouts than I have run since early 2017, before I tweaked my hamstring training for the Sugarloaf Marathon, which was the beginning of a pretty shitty stretch of running.
I’m doing the work and it’s pretty freaking glorious.
Yes, I’m sore. Yes, I’m tired. Yes, I want to eat all the time. But I’m not injured and I’m able to run. I’m gaining fitness and gaining confidence. I have no idea what will happen on Oct. 13, but to be able to put in this kind of work after so much time struggling to run and hating even the thought of doing it, the last two weeks have been a huge win.
My workload will start to drop a little bit after that long run tomorrow. I’ll be exactly three weeks out from Chicago tomorrow morning and it will feel good to ramp down a little bit to freshen up my legs and my mind for race day. I’ll still log decent miles, and I’ll hit a workout or two, but there will be no more 20-milers, that’s for sure.
It’s been quite an experience, this build. After three months of pretty awesome running, I was definitely worried that my hip was going to keep me from getting into the kind of shape I wanted to run the kind of race I wanted. I took two full weeks off running and still wasn’t feeling a heck of a lot better when I started to ramp back up. Thankfully, a ton of physical therapy has me feeling pretty decent these days and I have finally gotten to a point where I’m running the type of mileage I think I need to to run the kind of race I want to.
Are my goals still realistic? Who knows? Pessimistic me says no way, but I have a lot of people on my side, who see my workouts and my mileage, and tell me I’m capable of more than I think.
I’ll find out on Oct. 13 what I’m capable of, but whatever happens, this build has been a win. To get myself to a point where I can train for a marathon without completely falling apart is exactly what I was looking for when I signed up for Chicago.
I have three weeks and one 20-miler left, and my only goal during that time is to not screw anything up.
There was been way too much good in the last 2 1/2 months to blow it now.