City2Surf is around the corner. It is literally less than a week away and, well, I may be freaking out somewhat (I know, first world problems right). This time next week I will be feeling either the accomplishment of all my weeks of preparation….or looking for a different hobby.
I am actually quite worried that I have peaked too early. I followed my City2Surf training plan like a boss for the first 6 weeks and was feeling great, good pacing and lots of improvements. Then we went on our first snow trip. Slightly derailed but I got back on the training wagon after I had recovered. The we went to the snow again for a weekend of boarding (BTW I am going to completely gloss over my month-long blogging absence. Also, barefoot running post coming up shortly, not quite ready yet for that one) and when I tried the same run with one week difference…I tanked. Completely. I couldn’t even keep finish a flat 7 km course. On Sunday I did a 12km course including Bar Beach Hill (horrible hill in Newcastle similar to ‘heartbreak hill’)…couldn’t run up the whole thing. Normally I struggle yes, but I just keep on bloody running. This time, my calves were on fire and I had to stop and walk several times. It didn’t feel great.
OK, so it may seem as though I am heading towards a pity party and setting myself up with an excuse to not make my goal. But here’s the thing: running is hard. Also, more importantly (I find), it is unpredictable. There are so many factors that can influence your run (weather conditions, hydration, energy levels, time of day etc) but THE most important is your MENTAL STRENGTH, how FOCUSED you are. One weekend off running does not change your overall fitness, missing a few gym sessions doesn’t reduce your muscles to quivering weakness. Self sabotage on the other, can wreak havoc. If you think you are going to fail, its hard to convince yourself to keep on running. And it is a downward spiral, once I stop once, I am way WAY more likely to stop again (must be the instant gratification).
I know I am better than my last run, I know I can do City2Surf in sub 90 minutes and I KNOW that, no matter what, the feeling I will have from running City2Surf at all, let alone meeting my goal, will be amazing and worth whatever pain it costs.
So. My plan for this week includes:
- Yoga. Lots of it.
- Eating healthy, nourishing foods including lots of carbs (half-hearted carb-loading…)
- Drinking A LOT of water
- Two gentle runs. Not timed.
- No exercise AT ALL from Friday on.
- Calm the hell down, it’s meant to be a freaking fun run!!
Today I have taken Melvin for a walk, a run, done a yoga session and a 60 minute pump class. I’m feeling good. Strong and focused. I’ll be tapering off my training now so I am as fit as I can be.
I just have to believe I have done enough. No, I KNOW I’ve done enough. Exhale.