22 Days until the Maui Marathon

I am wrapping up my final week of training before beginning my taper. I am sticking to the three week gradual taper I used last year before the Maui Marathon and the Honolulu Marathon. It seems to work for me so why mess with it? And yes, it does drive me crazy but that is part of the taper process, right?

So before I start stressing out needlessly, let's take a good hard look of where I have taken my training. I feel that is an essential part of marathon training especially in this phase. Look at what you have done. Look at the journey. See the accomplishments. Understand the hurdles. Visualize success. Okay, that last part will come a wee bit later.

First, the confession. I am feeling nervous about the Maui Marathon. I had a tough time last year. You can read about it HERE. I don't want to crash and burn. I want to run well, PR, would LOVE to break 4:20, and be ready to bounce back into training for the Honolulu Marathon. I have one less week this year between those two races. I need to be able to turn back around and my goals for the Honolulu Marathon will obviously be dependent on what I achieve in 22 days. I need to see the big picture but I need to stay in the moment. Kinda reminds you of actually running a marathon, right? You need to see the big picture. You are out to run a marathon. You need to pace accordingly. But you need to stay in the mile you are in. Easier said than done at times.

I am a numbers gal and I spend many hours of my life analyzing things whether for work or for pleasure. Today, let's look at numbers for pleasure.

Check out this cool line graph comparing 2012 to 2013.

What a lovely mess! This shows my actual miles run in each year according to my planned miles. For 2013, I used the lower range of my planned miles for charting purposes. And I am comparing like weeks not actual dates in order for the training to have meaning.

What first stands out is that this year I am indeed running more. I am currently averaging 37.7 miles a week versus 29.8 miles a week in 2012. Not exactly where I wanted to be, I really wanted 40 miles a week, but an improvement nonetheless. This should pay off well. Also if you compare this year's red line to last year's blue line, I am a bit more consistent in weekly mileage. That should pay off  nicely too.

And how I am doing at following my plan? Last year you can see I was all over the place with my mileage due to juggling the plan like crazy. You can compare my reality (blue) against the plan (green). This year, I am doing much better and that was one goal of mine...to follow the plan better. You can compare my reality (red) versus my plan (purple). The extending purple line post-Maui Marathon and pre-Honolulu Marathon may be a different story. It was hard to write up that training plan based on my performance last year and my goals this year. That is a story for another day though.

All in all, I have strayed from my training some. Vacation time and time with the family factored in. Unknown symptoms and ER visits factored in. Emotional stress of battling these unknowns have factored in. But I feel I have done a great job sticking to the plan.

Another thing that I did that you can't see from the mere numbers alone is that I focused on what I was doing each day much better this year. If I said speedwork, I did speedwork. If I said tempo run, I ran a tempo run. If I said easy run, I ran easy. Okay, 99% of the time. There was a bit of juggling but it was due to health issues. And I haven't done as many longer runs as I hoped but I am not in a critical phase. In all reality, I shifted some a bit earlier and am just feeling insecure after my last 20 mile attempt that ended at 18 miles. You can read about that HERE.

This weekend is my final 20 mile run. I need those 20 miles for my mental training. I know I do. I have learned from my last attempt that I need better fuel on my run. I have my stock of VegaSport Endurance gels to add to the Applesauce to go that I like too. Applesauce isn't enough fuel and if I just looked at those numbers and added them up, no, a 60 calorie applesauce should not replace a 100 calorie gel. And my pace during that 18 mile run rocked the boat! It is a success even though it is a weight on my shoulders in some regards. Hence, the need to reaffirm myself to myself this weekend. Talking about putting extra pressure on yourself, huh?

But as I look back on my training, yes, there are days I would have loved more but in all reality, I did great. I have come far. Yes, my weekly mileage has declined the past few weeks but I can't ignore the fact that I was battling other health issues, spending time at the doctors or ER, giving blood, etc. I can't ignore that and the impact that will have on training. And I can't ignore the fact that regardless, I trained hard. I pushed myself. I am at a better position this year than last year. I need to open my heart, have faith, and believe in my dreams!

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for peace and quiet.
Daily Affirmation: I am in control of my destiny.


  1. So close! You have done the work and are ready to rock it:)

  2. I had a really bad 20 mile run today too but I'm hoping that was an aberration. Everyone has a bad run once in a while and it doesn't mean that the marathon will be bad. Just take this weekend's 20 carefully - dot all the i's and cross all the t's.

  3. May your run this weekend bring peace. By the way, talk to me about how and when you use the applesauce. I ordered some and should be here this next week for me to try before my full in Oct.


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