It just doesn’t feel like October around here, and that’s probably mostly because for the first time since 2010, I am not training for a marathon. Last weekend seemed like the first big racing weekend of the season and it hit me that I don’t have my own race on the horizon. Usually it’s Chicago Marathon weekend that gets me inspired and looking forward to my own marathon. So seeing all those amazing PRs left me feeling a little confused. Let’s recap a bit…
2011 was my first marathon ever. I ran Philly and started training in August. I had just recovered from hip surgery the year before so this was a huge accomplishment for me. Rob and I got engaged in October right in the middle of marathon training. Life was good. I enjoyed every second of that training cycle. (Even when I ran 20 miles in the snow in October.)
In 2012 I was coming back after taking some time off due to a piriformis injury. Our wedding was in November, and we had planned to run the Houston Marathon on our way to Hawaii for our honeymoon in January. I started training at the end of October. It wasn’t the same perfect training cycle as the year before, but I managed to get in all my training runs despite the wedding craziness and winter weather.
2013 was the year I started my blog, so I actually documented most of my training for the Baltimore Marathon. I ran this one on my 30th birthday. This was my earliest fall race, and training throughout the summer heat had me promising I would only run November marathons in the future. Race day was tough- it was warm and humid, and the hills got to me. I still considered it a success even though it wasn’t a PR.
The following year (2014) was my second round in Philly. I loved training for this marathon, and felt like I had a really strong training cycle. All the knowledge I had learned as I became a running coach was put to good use. My hips caused me a bit of trouble towards the end, but nothing I couldn’t manage. I ran a PR by about 15 minutes that day.
Last fall I was training for the Route 66 Marathon in Tulsa. I worked with a running coach for the first time, which helped to keep me on track and stay healthy after battling an injury earlier in the year. This was my first time training for a marathon while living out in the suburbs. The dark mornings were tough, as were the hills. I think this marathon cycle wore on me the most in terms of feeling like it was time-consuming and exhausting. I had started a new position at work and had a longer commute and longer hours. Still, this was a successful training cycle and race that led to a 5 minute PR.
Now, here I am, a year later, barely running 5 miles for my longest run of the week. Somehow I got injured not while training for a marathon, but while running lower mileage and shorter distance races. I couldn’t image training for a marathon this year with everything else that has been going on, but I certainly feel envious when I see others’ successful 20 milers or hear about an amazing PR.
Marathons are alot of work, and I always remind myself of that. I was lucky that I had 5 great years of marathons and I know I will get back there someday. Funny enough, I remember saying in the spring that I didn’t think I wanted to do a marathon this year (before I even got hurt). I am not sure what would have happened if I didn’t get hurt because in 2015 I said I wouldn’t run a marathon and then caught the marathon bug over the summer. I do think this was a good year for a break from it all and I guess we will see what 2017 brings!
[Tweet “Looking back on fall marathons for the past 5 years @runningoutowine #thinkingoutloud”]
Does it feel weird if you don’t have a race to run during a certain time of year?
Does seeing other runners’ long runs and races inspire you?
When is your next race?
Thanks to Amanda for giving me the chance to think out loud about my past fall marathons!