Today was a perfect example of what makes training for a marathon so difficult. Very few of the workouts I'll do over the next four months will be difficult on their own. And people expect the cumulative fatigue of running so many miles each week. But for me, the hardest part is the mental fatigue.
"Running is a lot like life. Only 10 percent of it is exciting. 90 percent of it is slog and drudge."
- Dave Bedford, English distance runner who occasionally put in 200 miles a week in training.
I ran the Old Town Eureka Loop again today and it was very similar to every other time I've run the Loop. Every now and then, something unusual or especially interesting happens, but most of the time, it's very routine. I have four more months of basically routine running.
"A lot of people don't realize that about 98 percent of the running I put in is anything but glamorous: 2 percent joyful participation, 98 percent dedication! It's a tough formula. Getting out in the forest in the biting cold and the flattening heat, and putting in kilometer after kilometer."
- Rob de Castella, World Champion marathon runner.
Speedwork changes things up, the routes change as the distance changes, and I mix in some cross training along the way. That all helps, but I think you still have to really enjoy the basic act of running to get through marathon training.
Running is my time to think, my quiet time, my time for self-reflection, my time for daydreaming, my time to push and challenge myself. Running is all of these things for me at different times. So even the 100th time I run the same route still feels good. It's the only way I get through the mental fatigue of such a long training schedule.
Goal For The Day: Middle Distance.
Distance: 4.00 Miles.
Time: 28:31. 7:07 Avg. (6:59, 7:16, 7:01, 7:12).
Route: Old Town Eureka Loop.
Conditions: 78 degrees/humid. 7:25AM.
Notes: Nothing special about today's run but I got it in. No Old Man sighting today. Hope to see him again. Pace felt good. Had to tack on quite a bit to get the watch to read 4 Miles. That's all I have to do on Sunday (after a swim and bike). Piece o' Cake!
Daily Miles: 4.00 Miles.
Run - 76.11 Miles.
Bike - 42.51 Miles.
Swim - 2,700+ meters.