This week was an interesting one. I ran three days this week for a total of only 15.8 miles. I think that is pretty good considering the Chicago Full was only 13 days ago. Was having some knee issues early in the week, but my 7.5 Long Run today went very well with no issues at all. Next week will be back to a regular 4-day training schedule before tapering for my next Half Marathon in November. I feel really good!
I have really been working on my training schedule for the next 2.5 months, as well as my 'recover & maintenance strategy' for the first three months of 2013. I have contacted several coaches, racing team mates, and Maniacs in my quest to come up with plans that are realistic and will help me to achieve my running goals for the next six months.
And I have to say that I have heard a lot of different ideas (and a few 'cautionary tales' suggesting that I should reconsider the timing of these goals). So now, I have to digest all that feedback and come to some decisions that I can live with. And I definitely plan to Skype with a few more folks before making my final decisions.
In case you haven't checked my Race Schedule page, I have three Half Marathons yet to complete this year: The Indianapolis Monumental Half (Nov 3rd), the Schaumburg Half (Nov 24th), and the Indianapolis Santa Hustle Half (Dec 16th). I am not at all worried about completing these races as I have run enough Half Marathons this year to feel confident about finishing three more (note, I did not say "PR" them).
The bigger challenge will be the three Full Marathons I have scheduled in the first three months of 2013: The Disney Goofy Challenge (Jan 11-13), the Surf City Marathon (Feb 3rd), and the Little Rock Marathon (Mar 3rd). Why these three races? Because I am endeavoring to become a Marathon Maniac and to do that, I have to finish three Full Marathons in 90 days. Is this aggressive? Definitely! Is this going to be difficult? Definitely! Do I believe I can do it? Yes, I do! But not without a solid 'race and recovery' strategy that will get me through each race and sufficiently recovered between them. No "PRs" here, just Finishes.
My experience at Chicago has proven that I can complete the distance and not be physically devastated afterwards. But I respect 26.2. I am dissecting that race and my prep for it so that I can do the things that led to that positive result. I am reading articles and talking to people who have done this before, to better understand their preparatory process. I found one particularly good article by Coach Jenny that describes the training methodology for people running multiple marathons and how that differs from the more traditional training method.
I have already started tweaking my training plan but I have more work to do before I am fully pleased with it. When I have my plan nailed down, I will post my thoughts here for debate and feedback. I am always looking for suggestions, particularly from those who have walked this path before and can share their insights. You can reply right here in a comment, or send me a private message via the Contact link in the menu bar to the left or via FaceBook.
Needless to say, I am very motivated to accomplish these goals. But it has to be done in a way that is thoughtful and safe. I like to 'push' myself. If I hadn't, I would not have gotten to where I am today from a fitness and running perspective. The question is: Is this too much of a push?