While I'm not training for the Chicago Marathon this year, I have run it a dozen times since the noughties began. That means Marathon Training has consumed most of my summers over the last decade.
This part of the season known as The Taper, was always my favorite part of the training season. Because when I was training I wasn't just focused on the marathon. I was also trying to be social, enjoy the summer weather and activities and yes, pursue the opposite sex. I probably stayed out late way too many Fridays and always wondered if I wasn't sacrificing a BQ or a PR for a piece of...good time.
The Good is that once the the Big 20 mile run was over, these last few weeks always seemed easier to map out my running/work/social calendar. Luckily, The weather has also cooled enough so that running midday isn't very different from running in the morning or evening.
The Bad is that at this point, the summer is over. This is the part of the season known as the Post-Labor Day Blues. That's because around this time you start to feel the urge to rebel. Squeezing in the week day runs during the hot summer. Giving up all your Friday nights so you can get up at the buttcrack of dawn in order to run your LR starts to get old. It's a little harder to get out of a comfortable bed, especially if Autumn Sleeping Weather has arrived.
The Ugly is that I use to beat myself up about staying out too late before LRs and not staying out and enjoying my summer. At this stage of the game, there isn't a wide latitude of room for improvement. Sure if you slack off now, you'll pay for it on Race Day. But as long as you continue to do most of your weekday and all your remaining LRs, you will likely finish the marathon. But if you have a competitive nature and wanted to BQ or PR, you might have an inkling that it isn't gonna happen this year. So why did you sacrifice your entire summer?
Ugh! Some more tidbits that hopefully help you tame your Marathon Demons:
- is Sex Before the Marathon okay? Truthfully, I would have liked to have conducted more research into the area back in the day.
- Set some reasonable expectation
- Don't forget your shoes or get injured because
- You cannot transfer or defer your entry to the Chicago Marathon
- People suck. Runners are people. Ergo, ipso facto
- some runners have an inflated sense of entitlement.
- Don't let Post Marathon Depression get you.
Most importantly, remember your training and you will cross the finish line. Have fun and good luck runners.
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