Go the Distance

First off, thank you all for your kind words of encouragement yesterday. It’s overwhelming to receive such an outpouring of support from so many and I’m grateful for each and every one of you who read, commented, and “liked” my “coming out of the bathroom” post. I feel like a weight has been lifted off of me–it has! Five pounds of colon, to be exact 🙂

Colon-free and kicking ass!

Now when I go to wipe my face with my shirt in Central Park, I won’t be so shy about Rosebud showing because all of you will be like, “What? It’s just an ostomy. NBD.” (No Big Deal for the short-hand illiterate like myself)

This past weekend, I ran NYC’s Summer Streets with several of my lululemon friends and family. We ran about 13 miles down and over the Brooklyn Bridge. It was glorious!

This is actually from last year, but you get the idea. Awesome views from the bridge!

As we trekked down Park Avenue with several hundred other runners, we chatted about life, running, training, and what-not. The miles ticked on by and before we knew it, we were turning around, barely winded and ready to head back uptown.

Grand Central Station, where did you come from? Only one mile left!

I haven’t felt so relaxed on a long run in ages! No bathroom break panics, no oh-my-God-it’s-so-hot-I-gotta-stop-before-I-die moments, no “are we there yet?!” moaning and groaning. Just 13 chatty, easy miles.

In order to go the distance of a marathon (or any other race), you gotta go the distance in your weekly workouts. Long runs aren’t meant to be speedy, they are meant to be long. I have a strict rule that I must feel good at the end of a long run, not dead dog tired.

Save the speed for your Yasso 800s and tempo runs. Save the marathon goal pace workouts for the middle of the week. Save the sprinting for the finish. Use your long runs to go long, go easy, and finish feeling like you could have gone longer.

That’s how Kara Goucher trains. And we all wanna run like Kara, don’t we? (again, I have to credit Erica for this awesome photo)

Matt Fitzgerald over at Competitor Magazine found that most elite athletes do more than 2/3 of their workouts at significantly slower than race pace. The goal is to run and keep running.

“Studies on the training intensity distribution of elite runners have found that most elite runners run at low intensities most of the time. For example, a survey of male and female runners who competed in the 2004 U.S. Olympic Team Trials Men’s and Women’s Marathons revealed that the men did almost three-quarters of their training slower than their marathon race pace, while women did more than two-thirds of their training at slower paces.”

Sum it up: No burn out.

Promise you, this is the way to train for your marathon and enjoy training for your marathon. After all, it is the journey, isn’t it? What are you waiting for, grab a friend and hit the road!

One handed! Peanut will be my running buddy very soon. And from the looks of it, my shopping buddy, too!

Now go out and run.

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9 thoughts on “Go the Distance

  1. Great info you just shared about taking your time. Long runs are meant to be that-a long run. I’m just starting. Doing the C25k program, week 5, day 2. My run/jog is what I call a “fast walk.” Since I never ran for anything as an adult, (now 64 years young) I’m happy to be able to do my fast walk. Your story is inspiring. Keep up the good work.

  2. I love Summer Streets, too! It’s one of my favorite times to run all year. I did the reverse run — started at Prospect Park and ran across the Brooklyn Bridge to Manhattan and up Park Ave w/ the Prospect Park Track Club peeps. I’m so glad your surgery went well and you are doing great! You’re an inspiration!

  3. Pingback: Not-Quite-Your-Pace Running Friends « run stronger every day

  4. I am almost halfway through my NYC Training and I am doing my best to keep my long runs a minute to a minute and a half slower than my goal pace…it’s so hard. Thanks for the information, it will help once I start feeling like I should be going faster tomorrow. Congrats on the worry free long run through beautiful NYC!

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