It’s 8 months now since the last marathon and I have become VERY comfortable NOT running long distances. Since July, I dabbled with a few parkruns, experimented with new shoes and technique, tried a little bit of yoga and reformer pilates but somehow didn’t quite put the focus into other fitness grand plans like I had hoped.
Instead, fitness took a back seat and it has been a wonderful time of wedding planning, hen parties, a wedding day and honeymoon(s).
I found plenty to do with my weekend mornings without the marathons last summer, autumn and winter. I was still coaching a lot but happily living my marathon dreams though my students. I was even quite happy to be on the sidelines of Dublin Marathon, the home marathon I normally never miss.
We returned from honeymoon at the end of January and after moving to a new home and running out of wedding excuses, it was time to get back to running. Coaching started back on 1st Feb and it took me at least 1 month to feel back to myself with the running and exercises. I had been well behaved with our ‘5 minutes a day challenge‘ in January, but my running shoes never left my honeymoon suitcase as much as I had planned. In fact I hadn’t run longer than 5k since June 2014 (with the exception of our annual Beaujolais Run in November but that was never going to be a serious run).
I tried one run on my own in early February to be (unpleasantly) surprised at how difficult I found it to pace myself, run alone, kick out the negative voices and basically not stop. It did remind me, when I was finished, of that lovely post run feeling and the clarity that comes from being away from phones, gadgets and everyone else when you do run alone. Although I only covered about 10k and my recovery would have been better after a normal 16 miler in marathon training. Had I really let myself so that far backwards in my running?
I realise I have all the excuses when I dont have a running goal. The weekends passes quicker, the months disappear and I just get lazy. Last year was the perfect time to take a break, but the break had been long enough. It’s time to get moving again.
So there was only one thing to do : register for a marathon. So I’m back, I have booked into Bratislava Marathon on the 29th March. I needed an event to get me focussed, organised and running and this will be it. Running Chicks/Coaches Anne and Lorraine will travel too so it has been great to have the company on the long runs.
What is most interesting is to see how quickly I have been able to build back up the mileage. In fact getting from 30 mins to 10k was harder than 1 hour to 3 hours. I have noticed my hips certainly tighter as I combine teaching classes now with the long run mileage. Maybe they were always this tight before and its only since I have had the break that I reverted to what is ‘normal’. My plan this Spring is to watch the body and notice how it does adapt to the mileage . I’m hoping to balance the miles with strength, technique, flexibility work and some new gourmet experiments.
No time targets or any great expectations for Bratislava, Its just a trigger to get the marathon buzz back again and have an excuse for another little holiday. That said we should probably have checked the cold temperature and the huge number of cobblestones before we booked in. Will be an interesting weekend…