Happy Tuesday! I’ve got another 7 miles at goal marathon effort on the ‘mill this morning (it’s just too cold/ icy out to do this in the early mornings on the roads in the winter, so I’m building up my mental stamina) and some strength. I’ve come to really look forward to my early morning Tuesday alarms (4am), although when it first goes off I definitely look something more-so like this:
I’ve been wanting to do a post about marathon fatigue for a while now because it’s something that I honestly always forget about (and I’ve ran 6 marathons). It’s those first 4 weeks or so of training (for me, anyways), where everything feels terrible. Your legs feel dead, speed is just not happening, and anything surrounding marathon pace is plain ugly.
Your almost always tired and the fatigue in those easy recovery runs is 100% REAL. I always equate those recovery runs to running through mud, with weights on your legs. Which is honestly how these runs should feel like. They’re getting the blood flowing, your main goal is to NOT work your cardiovascular system too much (save it for those speed/long/tempo runs in your week!), and it’s just working out all those kinks. Which is why it should feel hard/terrible/aweful.
Your body is also adjusting to a new schedule, which is one of the hardest things for me! Getting into a new routine is CHALLENGING. Until I make it a habit, it’s a struggle to get up early, find a good time each week to fit in my strength/ yoga/ rest day/ long run day etc. After those 4 or so weeks, I’ve finally adjusted (mentally AND physically) to training. I know how I’ll feel after certain runs and by trail and error (many marathon training cycles to go off of), and also when running/training works best for you. Unfortunately, if it’s your first or second marathon you may not yet have this down.
Marathon training takes a lot of time and energy. FIguring out how it works into your schedule and ADJUSTING to it takes PATIENCE. It’s not going to magically feel good overnight (or rarely will you ever feel great until after race day) and it takes a few weeks to adjust to ANY new training plan/schedule/routine (like anything in life, right?). I think getting over that 4-5 week training hump is hard with every new training cycle I begin and sometimes I find that it isn’t working and something needs to change. I did this for my goal Fall marathon (LV Rock n Roll) and found that switching to the half would be best for me where I was in life at the moment. That’s OK and sometimes it’s harder to acknowledge where you are versus where you want to be and make adjustments from there. Give yourself time, patience, and grace.
I’d love to know your tips when beginning a new cycle (marathon or something else!)- do you find to have an adjustment period? How long does it take for you?
Favorite day of the week? —> Almost always Thursdays. You’re on the cusp of the end of the week and by then I’ve got my long workdays behind me!
Where are you able to train right now ? Roads? Trails? Treadmill?