An Early Taper

The fruits of idiot-proofing my training plan have finally been realized.

Earlier this summer when I was mapping out The Plan, I decided that in order to be As Prepared As Possible, I would try to fit in two 20 mile runs before the marathon.

Considering my track record with long runs, it seemed like The Right Thing To Do.

Obviously I was thankful last weekend when I found redemption.

But I was even more thankful on Saturday morning when I opened my eyes at 8 AM, and felt like The Universe had decided to back over my body, and didn’t think twice about staying in bed.

I didn’t fret.

I didn’t obsess.

Which, as y’all know, is not usually the case when I’m presented with the choice to run or…not run.

To feel so instantly at peace with that decision felt REALLY good.

It’s so surreal to think that I have spent every single weekend since February 2nd thinking about the marathon.

Training.

Diving headfirst into 36 mile+ weeks.

Tearing through shoes at an alarming rate.

Finding callouses on my feet in places I didn’t know they could exist.

Well, kittens.

I’m on my last pair of Ravennas.

Which means that now the work is done.

Another little treasure The Good Doctor shared with me last Thursday?

If I didn’t enjoy training for the race, then the big show might be a disappointment.  That the weather might be bad.  I might feel out-of-sorts.  My run might not go the way I had hoped it would.

If I haven’t enjoyed the journey, then there’s not much that 26.2 miles can offer me in the way of vindication.

In the Spirit of Ignorance Being Bliss, I really don’t know what tapering has in-store for me, beyond a 13 miler this weekend and five or six miles the weekend before the marathon.

Y’all know that reading-up on that sort of thing isn’t really a part of my approach to training.

At this point, if I can banish my cough and keep my legs from self-destructing before October 2nd, then I’ll consider that a victory in and of itself.

Run on.

Do you over-plan or go with the flow?

Runners: How do you deal with tapering?

10 responses to “An Early Taper

  1. Kudos to you for listening to your body! I’m hopeful that the early taper with pay dividends and you will enjoy the race.

    I’m a complete planner, so I know what it feels like to give up control. Much respect for all your efforts!

  2. I savor tapering. It is the most wonderful part of training 😉

  3. Way to go, homeslice. Between you and Kirsten doing your running-thing it’s motivated me to go out and do the same. Probably not to the degree of a marathon, but perhaps a little 5K is a good start 😉 . I savor the feeling of victory, even the days where I can’t imagine my feet hitting the pavement at such a rapid or sustained pace. Because I know at the end of the day, it’ll all be worth it when I can finally say “Yeah, I did that.”.
    Go out and conquer my friend. You’ve earned that taper. ~M

  4. Finally I have worn off on you! Tapering rocks. Is your marathon near you or far, far away?

  5. Kat-
    Considering that I’ve tapered a ton in my lifetime (for various events:), take it from me: taper = soreness!! you wouldn’t expect it, but your muscles are actually building back up while tapering, which makes them feel like crap for a while. Be sure to drink lots of water and stay away from sugar, which increases the soreness! Good luck! So proud of you.

  6. How exciting that you’re on your taper! That means your race is so close!

    I like to have most of my daily things planned out, but I’ve come to the realization that plans can change despite how detailed your plans are. As for training plans for running, I like to keep my runs mostly on the same schedule. I know that sometimes I won’t have it exactly how I want it, but that’s okay.

  7. Over-planner here! And then, apparently, the plan goes all to hell because I get injured (er, or re-injured, I guess). I’m not good with going with the flow. Hope you fully kick that cold soon!

  8. My husband has had some really great marathons, where he feels like his body has reached new heights. And he has some where he’s been like “yeah, I did it. I’m done. I’ll go die now.”

    Bottom line from an avid non-runner? You are AWESOME for trying. You do NOT need to be A MARATHONER. If you do this one and you hate it, then you still did it, right? That’s so amazing!!! You took your body on this amazing journey and you did it, concentrate on that.

  9. Taper at will, my Friend! Your hyper-plan yet go-with-the-flow approach totally works for me. The fact that you planned to run 20 miles ever, let alone twice before a marathon is proof positive that you are a Rock Star.

  10. Enjoy the taper! It’s good that you got in two 20+ mile runs so you can taper without stressing now. I hope you’re feeling better soon. I can’t believe your race is in two weeks!! So exciting.

    (Sorry for the comment explosion, I’m just getting caught up on all your posts :))

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