October 30, 2014

Taper Time!

It's hard to believe that after several months of marathon training, I've arrived at the taper phase.  While some people loathe this part of the training, I love it!  I'm very familiar with the tapering concept since this was always part of my swimming training prior to any big meet.  After weekends of high mileage runs, I enjoy having the extra time...for sleeping, other hobbies, or being lazy.  With a big race on the horizon, I'm dedicated to making this a successful taper cycle. 

I'm trying really hard not to obsess over time goals for Richmond Marathon, but that's hard.  I ran both of my 20 mile runs at the exact same overall pace (9:31) which is more than 90 seconds faster than my last 20 mile training runs (prior to Marine Corps Marathon and Dopey Challenge).  I know I'm well-positioned for a PR and I'm hopeful that I might be able to reach my if-everything-goes-perfectly time goal.  Regardless, I know that I have trained hard and am ready for the miles.  I am conscious of the fact that a gazillion things can go wrong on race day so there are always wild cards to manage during the race.

Over the last few weeks, I've been feeling really run down.  I had sort of forgotten how the peak training weeks can leave you feeling fatigued and exhausted.  I've been working on getting to bed no later than 10:00 and taking naps on the weekend, if I can fit them in.  I generally don't sleep all that great right before a race so you better believe I will be focusing on getting quality sleep over the next 2+ weeks.

I'm so glad that Halloween is this weekend so the candy will be gone and I can start ridding my diet of a million fun-sized candy bars.  The office candy jar happens to be on my desk (yea, I realize it's not the best idea) and I will have that emptied until after race day so the temptations are minimal.  Other than avoiding superfluous candy (read: sugar and calories), I'll be focusing on eating quality lean proteins, produce, and whole grains.  My diet is normally pretty healthy so my challenge will be cutting out the extras - alcohol, diet soda, and sweets.  I have a pumpkin pasta bake that I'll be making on Sunday night and it will make great leftovers for the coming week.

And other than sleeping and eating well, I'll be trying to stay busy in the evenings and weekends when I normally would be spending time doing longer, more intense workouts.  I just bought a copy of the Spirit of the Marathon which is my go to motivational movie.  Thanksgiving is around the corner and I always love planning the menu.  And then there's that pesky issue of my house...it really could use a good deep cleaning.  But I mean I could risk injury with cleaning right?  Yea, I probably shouldn't mess with that until later...

Any tips for tapering?
{Christine}

20 comments:

  1. Yeah...I agree...injury happens with housecleaning! ;-) Sounds like you have that taper plan all worked out Christine! Happy tapering!

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    1. Thanks Mindy! The nerves are slowly creeping in.

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  2. Definitely not worth it to risk injury by cleaning the house. That can wait until after Richmond. :)

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    1. I have a feeling it may happen simply as a distraction from the nerves that are slowly creeping in.

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  3. That pumpkin bake sounds tasty. Be sure to share the recipe. I have seen that movie as well and liked it, I've been wanting to see the second one. Enjoy your taper. Hope you get alot of sleep. -L

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    1. Thanks girl! I will definitely share the recipe...although it was only three ingredients so it's not much of a recipe :)

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  4. Find something to keep you busy! Bake, read a book, shop, etc :)

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    1. Good advice, Sue! I just started a new book this weekend and it's perfect for reading before bed to calm my jitters and turn my brain off.

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  5. I am so happy for you that your training went so well - you are going to rock this! I really hope I can get my butt in gear and train better for my future races, I totally got lazy training for NYCM and I'm worried I'm going to pay for it this weekend!

    I love the taper part too - I can never understand how people don't enjoy the running LESS part! : )

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    1. Me neither! I guess those people just love running more than us, HA!

      My unsolicited advice...take a long break from training. Run when you want, because you want to, not because a training plan says you should.

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  6. Enjoy taper town! Perhaps bake some fall goodies or some soup/savory dishes that you can also freeze.

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    1. That's a good idea. I may do that this weekend.

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  7. Wouldn't that be awesome if you PR'd after struggling during this training cycle?!? You are going to rock this race!!!
    I would, UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES, clean until after the race ;) Then hire someone as a treat-lol!

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    1. We shall see :) The last few weeks of training have gone much better...I'm nearly positive that's due to dropping temps. It really is amazing how the weather can impact your running (and running mood) so much!

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  8. Taper tip - relax, relax, relax.

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    1. True, true, true...and totally not my nature!

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  9. Tapering is a time to hydrate, get extra rest and fill your body with great nutrition! Good luck with your race!

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    1. Hydration is a great point! I find myself struggling to drink enough water during the workday.

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  10. Getting extra sleep a ways out is always a good idea. Hope you're enjoying your tapering!

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    1. Thanks Jaime. I can't tell if I'm actually tired or if my subconscious is telling me I'm tired so I get more sleep...because it's happening without much effort!

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