A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Training, Taper, Race Plan, and Nerves!

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Ah, the saga of taper week. Taper week messes with my mind! I ran 8 miles yesterday morning and the entire time I was hyper aware of every single niggle, pull of a muscle, and hot spot. During the 8 miles I diagnosed myself with a variety of injuries. 

Why is every part of my body injured right before my race???? I wondered. Then I realized that I am not injured. My mind is playing tricks on me. These normal running feelings occur all the time, it's just that I don't always fixate on them because they are nothing. But when a race looms in the future, every little "feeling" is THE END OF THE WORLD.




I hate it. Why do I race? It's absurd. I am trying to train my body to run at peak performance on a specified day and time. No matter how I feel that day- tired, headache, got the poops, whatever, on Saturday morning at 9am I am expecting myself to perform at a certain level. WHY? Attention? Awards? I don't know. 

Ultimately I wanted to work hard and push myself to see what I can do. I am not competing against anyone on Saturday except myself. 

What I am MOST proud of is my training. Even if I shit the bed at the race- much like I did at BDR, I have completed really hard training runs. I hit paces on the treadmill I have never reached during training before. I ran tempo runs faster than I ever have. And my body held up! I am happy for that. Now it's time to perform.

By the time you're reading this, I have zero runs until my race. I ran 5 miles this morning, and now I'm done until race day. I like to taper hard. 2-3 days rest from running is what I enjoy before I race I am trying to do well at. Those couple days are not fun, but I do it because I know it works for me!

And now for my race plan/goals. I hate putting it out there because I feel like I am jinxing myself... even though I don't believe in jinxes!


A Goal: <1:12:30 (7:15 pace)
B Goal: None.

I know it is bad to just have one pie in the sky goal, but I'd be lying if I said I'd be disappointed with anything other than my A Goal. I mean, unless we are running into the wind for several miles, I will be disappointed if I don't reach my A Goal.

My race plan is to run even splits. I trained myself during tempo runs to try to run as evenly as possible and I worked myself up to 9 miles at tempo. Lots of these tempo runs were done on tired legs, so I am secretly hoping with a proper taper, I have a bit more energy on race days and a 7:15 pace feels a little easier than it did during training runs. If I am feeling good, I will allow myself to crank it up a bit for the last 2-3 miles... but not before that. And if I can't, I will try to stick to my prescribed pace. I really just want to run the race I trained for.


I'm not sure what the weather is going to be like yet- probably anywhere between 35-45. I didn't pick out Flat Megan yet, I will probably do that on Thursday. I do keep checking out the route on the race website, but every time I do that I have to run to the bathroom. Just typing in the website address makes me have to poop!
So there ya have it, all my hopes and dreams for the Capitol 10 miler this Saturday. Thanks for listening!

Do tapers make you crazy?
Did you ever have ONLY and A Goal?

30 comments:

  1. I think its totally fine to just have an A goal! As long as you don't feel like all was lost if you don't accomplish your goal. I think there are always positives we can point out from even the worst race... Taper crazies are definitely normal but I think mine start well before the taper! Actually I think I have just made myself so anxious about injuries that I am generally always worrying about them.

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    1. I agree, as long as we can learn something from a bad race, I would still see it as a positive!

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  2. You are amazing and you are going to do amazing! I am proud of you, my friend!

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  3. WOW is it really going to be that cold on Saturday up there? Our high is 88*F :( I'm over the weather already. Sometimes I really wonder why I live in Florida!

    PMA PMA PMA Positive Mental Attitude! You are going to kick butt! The weather is so much more conducive to a great race than BDR. You'll be free from the stress of travel, and you'll be on a course that you're familiar with. There are always race variables that are out of our control, but everything that is within your control you've taken care of. Now the only thing to do is go out there and do it! If you don't meet your A goal this time it's because of something out of your control and there's nothing you can do about that, so no point in worrying!

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    1. I finally was able to look at the hourly forecast for that morning and it looks like it will be 45-50, which I think is actually PERFECT for a run!

      Thank you thank you thank you for pointing out I have done everything I can that is within my control. As long as I keep up my end of the bargain and taper correctly and stick to my race plan and don't get shit faced the night before, I think you are right- I WILL have done everything in my control!

      I will be interested to see if my calves cramp like they did at BDR. :)

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  4. Oh i'm excited for you and I know you'll do great.
    I have a race this weekend along the ocean front and I know there will be some serious head winds, there always are!

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    1. Have fun at your race! I hope it isn't too windy. Maybe it will be at your back at some point and then you can fly? :)

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  5. Eeeek! How exciting! Good luck!! I am also racing on Saturday :) Well, "racing". I'm in the thick of training so I can't really taper and I'll probably just treat it as a tempo run....we're supposed to get SNOW! 35-45 sounds like perfect racing weather. That's what we had during my half a couple weeks ago and it could not have been better. I think this race will treat you MUCH better than BDR!! BDR really did not live up to its name, huh? :)

    I have the exact same mindset about A/B/C/Z/whatever goals. I kind of feel like it's pointless to have sub goals because once I've put an A goal out there, it's always going to be on my mind and it's hard to settle for something less when I know that wasn't my "real" goal. For my marathon, my A goal is close enough to my current PR that it's kind of silly to set lower goals anyway.

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    1. Thanks Hanna! Good luck at your race as well! Snow?? That sucks. I am so over this winter! I actually had to run in tights and gloves this morning which really ticked me off. I thought for sure I'd be in shorts from here on out but NOT SO.

      No, BDR did not live up to it's name by a long shot. While it wasn't a personal worst, it definitely did not go well for me.

      Sometimes I set A/B/C goals- mostly when I know my A goal is only something I can reach if all the stars are aligned on race day- which obviously doesn't always happen! My "A" goal here though is something I feel like I SHOULD be able to reach even if there is some adversity thrown my way. But obviously, I don't feel like it is a GIVEN that I will reach it. I felt confident about BDR but then an Ativan hangover and calf cramps had other plans for me.

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  6. YEAHHHHH! Excited for you. I love that you only have an A goal. I just absolutely love that about you. All in, balls out!

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  7. You have put in all the training and now putting in the jail time... I mean taper time... I'm sure you will reach your goal!

    I know at least 4 others who are doing this race, if I wasn't feeling so sick right now, I would bribe my sisters to watch my son so I would run it too!

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    1. Haha jail time! That's a great way to put it as I am a prisoner of my own mind at the moment. :)

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  8. Can I just say I love the phrase "shit the bed"? So hilarious and full of imagery haha.

    I think if you know you'd be disappointed with anything else, then just having an A goal is fair. You've put the work in; trust your body and do your thing!

    Tapering is so weird. WHY does it make everything ache and twinge just before race day?! There must be a scientific reason behind it.

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    1. There MUST be. I mean, I am generally okay with running less and taking rest days. It's a minor annoyance. The aches and pains are the BIG annoyance.

      I learned the "shit the bed" phrase from my eloquent husband. :)

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    2. I had not had any coffee yet when I read your post this morning and I actually thought you shit the bed at Ali's house! It honestly took me a minute to realize you weren't being literal!!

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    3. OMGGGGGGGGGGG I WOULD HAVE DIED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LOL I am glad we figured this out. :)

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  9. Good luck with the taper! I have the same problem when I am truly tapering for a race and really toning down the mileage and intensity. All of a sudden a 9min/mile pace feels hard...what??? And YES!!! --> Everything hurts. How can that be?

    I am actually doing a 10-mile race this weekend too! My race is on Sunday. I'm definitely not trying to go for a PR because the race is called Horse Butte 10-miler... 5 miles up a butte, 5 miles down. At least the downhill will be nice. :)

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    1. I do not know how everything hurts. It must be psychosomatic, which pisses me off because if I KNOW it's not real, then why do I still feel it?? You're the psychologist. Thoughts? Can you do a study on this?? :)

      Good luck at your race! Running up a butte sounds crazy!!! My race is pancake flat for 99% of it. :)

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  10. So excited for you!! You're going to rock it, I can feel it!!

    I feel ya on not having a B goal. That's how I feel about my marathon goal, PR or bust dammit! Lol!

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  11. Taper madness is the worst! I think you're fine to just have an "A" goal, since that's the one thing you really want!

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  12. I totally think you can do it! You made good gains during training and now you are ready.
    Do you like to warm up before a race? I seem to do better when I run a slow half mile or mile and then go potty again before I actually start.
    Maybe you should kill the fiber in your diet for a few days lol
    I am not good at setting pie in the sky goals, but I did have a number bouncing around in my head that was a dream time the least few races I ran.
    Go get that goal A - mantra "I am not tired, I feel amazing!"

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    1. oh, and I still think your Florida race was pretty dang awesome! You had heat and humidity and took your AG :)

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    2. Well I will be honest I have only ever warmed up for one race and it was a 5k. During all my race pace runs I did a warm up of 1.5-2 miles. But I don't know whether to warm up on race day! I think I will, especially because I am taking 2 days off from running before the race. It is prob not a good idea to go from NO running to a 7:15 mile. A warm up mile would probably be best. :)

      I am trying to kill fiber! Yesterday I had kale and lettuce but no more fibrous veggies. Omg I had beans yesterday too. No more beans. What the hell am I supposed to eat????

      Thank you for that mantra! Maybe I should write "I feel amazing" on my arm so I can look at it? :)

      Also, I will mention sometimes I feel bad about saying BDR sucked because I did win my AG but like I said, I compete against MYSELF and my body just did not cooperate that day. I feel like the potential for a better race was there but I just couldn't pull through on race day for a variety of reasons... humidity... Ativan hangover...

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  13. Oh my goodness, your races this Saturday! Super Duper good luck!! I know you will totally kick ass because you are a super strong runner who is very smart about listening to your body and training hard. I cannot wait to hear all about it :-)

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