Tomorrow marks the start of marathon training taper. A typical marathon taper is 3 weeks of reduced workout load, cut by anywhere from 20-50% depending on how much you were doing to start with. The idea is to work enough to maintain fitness but rest enough to be at your strongest when the marathon comes. That's three weeks from today, 1 June 2008.
The taper is probably coming at just about the right time. I had been working out awfully hard, both running and biking a lot, including a couple bike commutes to and from work, 24 miles one way. This past week I went out and run at lunch time and then had a particularly hard ride home with a stiff headwind. Later that night I came down with a sudden cold that wiped me out for nearly 3 days. I believe this was a sign of overtraining as I could not seem to get enough sleep either. For only the second time in my 16 week training plan I skipped a run (speedwork). And I skipped a cross training session too. It's amazing the razor's edge we can live on. I was at the peak of my fitness, running fast, biking a lot, feeling invincible and then BAM! I'm wiped out.
I did do my last long run of my training after skipping the speedwork and cross training. 19.5 miles, better than my first 20 mile run but not as good as my 22 miler 2 weeks ago. My pace wasn't where I wanted it, I was hoping for anticipated marathon pace but ended up running about 30 seconds a mile slower. Given the cold and overall crash I had last week I'm not as disappointed as I might have been. I've still got the lingering effects of the cold, but am not so wiped out or tired anymore though.
Week 4: 29.6 miles, long run 19.5 miles.
Now playing: They Might Be Giants - Birdhouse In Your Soul
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