I trained hard for Baton Rouge. The hardest I've ever trained. But, did I train as hard/smart as I could have?
There are a couple of things that I've decided that I would like to do differently this time around.
1. Emphasize the Marathon Pace Runs.
I was really terrible at getting in quality runs at Marathon Pace. Why? I don't really have a good response for this, except that I'm lazy and by the time those runs rolled around on the schedule, I always made some excuse for skimping on the total mileage or skipping them. Which in turn, gave me an excuse for why I didn't run faster at Baton Rouge. SEE HOW THAT WORKS?
In trying to come up with a more useful explanation than just "I'm lazy," (which will never change) I've tried to come up to a possible reason why the marathon pace runs just didn't get done enough. I think part of the issue was my Tuesday interval workouts. I always nailed those workouts and probably ran them a bit too fast, which completely burned me out for the rest of the week.
An accurate metaphorical rendering of my training weeks
for Baton Rouge. In gif format, of course.
To combat this I'm going to try the ole switcheroo. I'm going to start doing my mid-week long runs with Marathon Pace miles on Tuesdays and do my intervals on Thursday. MIND BLOWN. I know it seems so freaking simple, but I think it's the best way to ensure that get those runs in (and don't skimp on them) and hopefully by doing my intervals later in the week, I'll be a bit tired and won't always run faster than I'm supposed to run.
Also, I'm going to try to really focus on hitting the paces I'm supposed to hit on my long runs. Too often on a long run, I'll fall into the trap of... "Ohhhh... I just gotta hit the miles." Well, sure, dumbass, if you just want to finish.
2. Upping my fitness level.
I was in really good shape for Baton Rouge and I want to continue that, but also up the ante a little bit. Enter: trail running.
It's no secret that I hate trail running at Percy Warner Park. Mostly, because I am a baby and I hate having to stop and walk up the hills. Trail running perfection for me is a nicely groomed trail with no roots or rocks and mostly flat. Sadly, that does not exist within 15 minutes of my house, so, I just bitch and moan about the Red Trail and avoid it at all costs.
Ohhhh everyone loves trail running at Percy Warner Park.
Ohhhhh... it's so awesome. Let's go trail running at PWP.
But, it occurred to me last week, that the real reason I hate it... is because it's so freaking hard. As soon as I start the trail, I'm huffing and puffing like a mad woman. It's like cardio hell. Which of course means... I should be doing it more. UGH. I hate it when that happens.
For my Sunday Recovery runs... I'm going to start hitting the trails. UGH. Just typing that makes me want to stab my eyes out. But, I do feel like in the long run it will be good for training and probably my heart even if my ego takes a huge hit every week.
Sadly this is probably the one that I am least likely to keep up with, but I'm hoping that by putting it here on the blog, I'll keep on it. You guys should ask me every week: HEY AMY, HOW'S THAT TRAIL RUNNING GOING?
3. Learning how to fuel.
I've got the gluten free thing figured out. THANK GOD. But now, I need to figure out what the hell to fuel with during the race. I've never had much success with gels and just the smell of shotbloxs now make me sick (plus, who in the fuck designed the packaging for those things? So non-friendly to runners). During Baton Rouge, my body and my head could have definitely used some fuel.
Uh. Find a fuel to use on race day. SERIOUSLY this time. I always say I'm going to do this... and then I don't. This time around, I'm going to find it.
It's funny, you think all you have to do is run. But damn, there always seem to be tweaks and adjustments that need to be made to training in order to improve. It's a sick cycle and it's time to get back on track.
OH MY GOD, DID I JUST SAY I'M GOING TO RUN TRAILS ONCE A WEEK? Fuuuuuuuuuuck.