I was up at 5:00 again this morning. A Saturday morning, nothing going on today--you'd think I'd be able to sleep in. I just read in bed for a couple of hours before getting up. If it wasn't dark outside, I would have loved to have gone for my run before the rest of the family even woke up. I've been considering getting a headlamp for that purpose, but I'm not sure that I'd use it very often. We don't have street lights here, though, so it would be necessary if I wanted to run in the dark.
Today I had another six-mile easy run on the schedule. I ran the same route as yesterday, and it was pretty much identical. The weather was colder, and my legs felt a little fresher, so it was harder to keep my pace at a slower range. I didn't want to push it at all today, because I have to run 16 miles tomorrow.
(A few people have asked me if I am going to sell my Garmin when I get my new one; sorry, but I'm not. Garmin actually gave it to me, so I wouldn't feel right making any money from it. Also, Jerry wants to start training so he can do a Ragnar next year, so he's already called dibs on it!)
I feel like everyone on Instagram and Twitter is running a 20-miler this weekend. We're three weeks out from the Chicago Marathon, so this is the weekend that all the runners get in their final long run before tapering. I'm running 16, and I can't help but start to second-guess my training.
I was thinking today that maybe I should just run 20 tomorrow to prove that I'm fine with where I am in my training (I won't, but the thought crossed my mind). I followed the Hansons' training to the letter, and I know I just need to trust that I'll do fine during the race. I truly am very curious to see how I feel during the marathon after having only run 16 miles in training. I guess I feel like people think I'm just taking it easy because I'm "only" running 16 miles; but this is the hardest I've ever trained for anything! I ran 200 miles in August, and I'm on track for 200 more in September. So I'll just follow the schedule, and hope for the best :)
Speaking of marathons, my sister, Jeanie (who swore she'd never become a runner), is going to be running her first marathon in April! She and her husband, Shawn, only started running in late 2012 in order to run my virtual 5K for my birthday. They had no plans of continuing to run after that. But as soon as the 5K was over, Jeanie started looking for a longer distance, and we ran the Glass City Marathon as part of a 5-person relay team.
In May, I surprised her by flying to Illinois and running her first half-marathon with her. When she'd said she was going to do a half-marathon, I was pretty giddy with excitement that she "caught the running bug". After that half, she wanted to improve her speed, so I wrote up a half-marathon training schedule for her and Shawn to do.
Her speed has drastically improved, and I know she's going to PR her next half. She also made the decision to make the ultimate leap to a full marathon. She and Shawn are registered for the Glass City Marathon in Toledo in April 2013!
She posted this on my Facebook wall yesterday, and I was kind of speechless:
Over the past year or so, Jeanie's pace went from 13+ minutes/mi to sub-10's! And Shawn really blows my mind... he just ran a sub-20:00 5K. That's SUPER fast. His first mile was 5:20! He said kids always used to tease him because of his "chicken legs", and he's still very self-conscious of them--well, those chicken legs are pretty damn fast ;)
Anyway, while I would love to run alongside Jeanie for her first marathon, I just can't even imagine doing another. After Chicago, I want to be done, at least for a very long time. I've learned not to say "never", so I won't; but I already told Jeanie that I will cheer super loudly for her, but I can't run it with her.
She had a pretty awesome idea, though. She got five friends (including me) to form a relay team ("Jeanie's Cheer Squad") for Glass City. Rather than running at our own paces, one of us will be running alongside her the WHOLE way! The exchanges are about every five miles, so we'll each get to run a short distance of Jeanie's first marathon with her. It will be our job to keep her motivated. I think it will be so fun!