T minus 11 days til I’m lurking around the starting pens in Greenwich, trying to eat a banana and convince myself that I don’t need to pee again. Yesterday was my last long run before the event, so I am officially on The Taper!!!
Two weeks ago I managed my first proper long run, which was 17 miles. I set out at my ideal marathon pace, and my head was in the right space. Except …. not much else was. I was using a different energy shot because I couldn’t find my usual gels, and despite trying to eat properly before hand, I started to get hungry at around mile 7.
During the run itself I felt ok, except I was hungry! But afterwards, I crashed. I felt so ill, and had no energy. I drank my chocolate milk, but waited far too long before eating so that by the end of the evening I was feeling sorry for myself on the couch and nibbling on biscuits.
Cue 12 days of feeling nervous, apprehensive and scared! Did I even want to run a marathon? Why didn’t I opt to spend the time with Baby B instead of running? How are we even going to get to London on the train, with all my gear and everything the bubba needs? What the hell was I thinking?
And yet. And yet, there’s always a little voice in my head that says ‘yeah, but you wait til you’re on the starting line. You wait till you’re pushing through mile 18, you wait til you’re running down the mall and you wait til you’re holding Baby B after having run the London marathon’. The experience itself will be amazing, and the training will be harder than the event.
Yesterday I did 20 miles in 3.5 hours. This time I had my usual gels, and I also had some additional food for during the run. My head was in the right space too: keep it cool, and take it steady. Mentally I approached it like four 5-mile runs, which was a lot better (but not at 13.1 when I realised I was only half way through!). As soon as I finished I was eating, and continued to eat and drink in small amounts until I went to sleep.
So here I find myself in the shortest taper ever, wondering how to approach it. I’ve followed a plan, but only roughly because flexibility is the name of the game when training with a baby. I think I’ll have two days off, and then start gentle gym sessions until the big day. And by gentle, I mean with lots of jacuzzi time factored in.
The countdown is on. And I feel….
good scared terrified ecstatic realistic. And also excited.