Monday, January 16, 2012

respect the distance

When I started marathon training every new distance was a huge deal. Even just one more mile called for a celebration. Then somewhere along the way the shorter distances started to not be a big deal, especially if they were under 12 miles. Ya know, a little 8 mile run in the middle of the week, no big deal. I started to crave distance.

After the marathon I knew my body needed a break. I still ran, but def. not at the same distances I was before. But I still thought a 10k was no big deal, until the Turkey Trot. That's when I started to really understand what GBA means when she says "respect the distance". I ran way too much in the days before this race, didn't carb up, and it wasn't a good race for me.

The more I run the more I learn about respecting the distance. At the marathon expo I signed up for The Rock N' Roll Half Marathon in D.C. I thought the 13.1 distance race would be enough to keep me motivated to run but would be a nice break as well. I also thought I needed a time goal as well.

So as I train for this race and The Monument Avenue 10k with PRs in mind I understand even more about respecting the distance. For example I ran 3.1 miles in 29 minutes 17 seconds the other day, which is a great time for me. Honest confession: I was sore the next day! What? After only 3 miles? I ran fast for me, and even though it was only 3 miles my body still needed to ajust.

I am learning about respecting the distance. From a 5k to marathon, each distance has it's own challenges. The shorter the distance the faster I want to go. At a longer distance I can get into my grove of what's comfortable to me and just go. (I hope someday I can start to shave minutes off my marathon time, but for my first that is where I was.)

I am learning that a fast 3 miles can feel like a slow 10 afterwards. Who knew? Mostly I am happy that my training hasn't stopped post marathon. I'm so excited about this half in D.C. and the Monument Avenue 10k, both races where I will be respecting the distance from now on.