I missed last week. I didn't miss any scheduled workouts or anything, but I neglected to write a post. I was busy all weekend, and while I tried to catch up on the post during the week, I couldn't seem to get it done.
I am sure you were devastated.
There actually wasn't much to write about, and there isn't much this week either. It's all just ramping back up from the half, putting in the kilometers, and working on slowing down my long runs.
One of the things I've heard about training for a marathon is that boredom can be a challenge. No meat athlete talks about this frequently on their podcasts. They say that when you go out for a run (and that run is two or three hours), you spend a lot of time in your own head. Supposedly, this is one of the hardest parts - the mental challenge. I haven't hit that point yet, but I can vaguely imagine it.
So far I am pretty lucky. My shortish long runs are still log enough for a Rich Roll or Sid Garza-Hillman podcast, and the ones that are too long for those shows, are long enough to entice Stickman to keep me company. I am back down around the 15k-18k mark, but will be back up to half marathon distances by the end of the month. That is going to be weird to run half marathon every weekend. Touch wood.
I am having trouble getting my TrainingPeaks account back online, but they were nice enough to let me have a premium account while things got sorted. I finally have the coveted PMC (Performance management chart) back:
The pink line is the training load, the orange line is form, and the blue line is fitness level.
The more your training load, the lower your form. That is because you're not physically at your best. You're training all the time which takes a toll. Then if you take a break - or taper in running parlance - your form goes up as you ease off on running. As a result your fatigue goes down. If you notice in the middle of that graph where my form and fatigue flip - that's when I got sick and then had the half marathon race.
In short, I didn't do that whole thing very well, and as a result lost some fitness (the blue line) I wish I would have been able to see this graph the whole time!
Anyway, live and learn. Step 1) don't get sick, and Step 2) only taper when you have this graph so you don't over shoot. The day my fatigue was the lowest was the half marathon, and you'll notice my fitness was pretty low at that point as well.
Most of this is way over doing this by the way. I am not nearly good enough to require this amount of measurement and tweaking, but I find it fun. What you measure is what you improve - or something like that.
Just for old time sake, here are the graphs I've been keeping for distance and time. I'll probably stop updating these if I can get my TrainingPeaks account sorted.