another 1st day

*Pretend it’s yesterday. I wrote this yesterday, on paper, but am only getting around to posting it today. So pretend it’s Monday July 13, 2015.

I quietly began a new training cycle today. Sixteen weeks for the Black Goose Marathon on November 1st. It should be a big deal, but I’m not making a big deal about it. The goal is, as always, to get the BQ, but I’m not saying anything like “This is it!!” and psyching myself out before getting started, because “this” may, in fact, not be “it”. That’s ok. I’m trying again, that’s all. If it doesn’t happen this time, I’ll just try again, again. I’ll try again til it happens (because it will), and see how much I can learn by the time I get there.

I’m trying out a new plan, so I’m looking forward to seeing how it goes, but I don’t feel anxious or like I have a shit ton of work ahead of me (even though I do). The idea is to take it seriously, but still allow flexibility; not be so rigid that I snap if something (or several somethings) goes wrong. It’s a mindset that would have been great for all the other cycles, but some of us take a little longer to catch on. 😏

Anyway, the plan I’m using is harder in some respects, but easier in others. Some of the weekly workouts are more intense than I’m used to, but there are more designated easy recovery days and two rest days instead of one. It’s starts out with just 22 miles in the first week. I’ve been averaging about 25-30 for a while, so it’s going to be at least a couple of weeks before my body catches on to what’s happening.

It’s weird because I promised myself I would NEVER train in the summer ever again, but that’s what I’m doing and I’m not all that concerned about it. The additional rest day is really helpful because even though there’s quite a bit of unavoidable sacrifice for training, I don’t want to give up so much that I start resenting it and possibly end up quitting anyway. I have a backup plan that I can pick up whenever in case this one doesn’t work out, and I’ll be able to do most of the workouts in the morning, hopefully avoiding heat burnout. If I don’t get the BQ this time, I can try again in January since it would be a 2017 qualifier either way (unless they adjust the qualifying times. Eeep!), and I can consider it more experience with the distance, since I truthfully don’t have enough of it anyway.

I’m not planning to talk about training much aside from keeping track here, and only a few people in my real life will about it and how it’s going. I feel better about it that way. I’m also trying to get into the habit of looking ahead to the next day’s workout only (or maybe the current week if days have to get switched around because of life), and take it in small steps. I’ve struggling in the past with taking it all incrementally and instead always focused on the entire mound of work and gotten overwhelmed, and often discouraged. And the paces are really specific, but if I don’t hit them every single time, that’s fine. It’s unrealistic to think that I’ll be able to no matter what, and I’m mainly aiming to stay consistent and injury-free…and happy. ☺️

So the first day I had 5 miles at a slow pace (slow in this case is 8:30-9:00 avg.). Overall average was 8:40 so right on track, and here are the splits:

Avg Pace
Summary 43:25.8 5.01 8:40
1 8:49.7 1.00 8:50
2 8:38.5 1.00 8:38
3 8:48.5 1.00 8:49
4 8:39.6 1.00 8:40
5 8:25.8 1.00 8:26

I got out there slightly later than would have been ideal (6:25am) and the first mile actually felt slow (I didn’t have to try to slow down), but it got easier and I’m glad to have been able to keep the pace fairly consistent. Temp was 63° but it got hot REAL quick. No music or phone, just my watch only.

A successful first run, but I’m not going to say it’s the 1st out of xxx days or xxx miles and get freaked out already. I don’t actually know what those numbers are and hopefully it stays that way! 😝