They say you're not really ready to start training for the next marathon until you've stopped thinking about the last one. I can't believe that Houston was just 2 weeks ago. It seems like it was 2 months ago. As the excitement of the marathon begins to wane a bit, my thoughts this week have turned more and more towards the spring and training for the Pig.
I like data. I like science. I LOVE numbers. So, the urge to get real scientific with my training is strong. However, I need to accept the fact that even though I have alsmost a year of training under my belt, I'm still far too slow and big to be worrying about numbers. For all intents and purposes, I'm still quite the beginner.
So, I'm holding off on number crunching until I can get to a point where it matters. In my opinion, I can keep doing what I'm doing and continue to see significant improvements to my health and my running. I really am on the steep part of the improvement curve so I ain't worrying about the numbers at this point.
That being said, I am making a few changes to my training. First of all, I'm going to run slower. WHAT??? Yes, that's right, SLOWER!!! This weekend, I ran two 6-7 mile runs at a most enjoyable effort and pace. I think the pressure of Houston and the Fall Warmup series with all the time limits and course closings and trying to get in before the limit and always worrying about the 13:45 pace really wore me out. I think I handled it well but as eveyone knows, your first marathon should be about finishing, not about time. So, now, with my long runs, I'm not worried at all about that. I don't have to worry about building up my distance AND trying to do it fast. Yipee!!!
Secondly, I'd like to add a little variety to my training. By variety, I mean types of workouts, venues, group/solo, types of surfaces. The problem with the slower long runs and easy runs is that I am really susceptible to beind lulled into always running slow. So, I think once a week, I'm going to throw in a tempo run or some beginner speed work like 30/30 intervals that coach talked about or some hill work.
Most of all, I'm going to continue to listen to my body, avoid injury, and have fun. That's my training plan.