Marathon Training (Week 23)

I RAN THE HARTFORD MARATHON! Marathon training has been an incredible experience. Over the course of these past 23 weeks I’ve been humbled, exhausted, doubtful, elated, proud, surprised, and just about any other emotion that comes to mind. And I would do it again in a heartbeat. In fact, I’m already searching for my next marathon! Running fever is in full force, and hopefully it’s here to stay.

P.S. –  Thank you to everyone who donated to my cancer research fundraising here! I did a crappy job at fundraising but really hope to try it again in the near future with more focus and determination.

Previous weeks:
Marathon Training (week 1-3)
Marathon Training (week 4)
Marathon Training (week 5)
Marathon Training (week 6-9)
Marathon Training (week 10)
Marathon Training (week 11)
Marathon Training (week 12)
Marathon Training (week 13)
Marathon Training (week 14)
Marathon Training (week 15)
Marathon Training (week 16)
Marathon Training (week 17)
Marathon Training (week 18)
Marathon Training (week 19)
Marathon Training (week 20)
Marathon Training (week 21)
Marathon Training (week 22)

marathon training schedule

{my 23-week marathon training schedule in all it’s completed glory}

WEEK 23 (10/6/2014 – 10/12/2014)
Monday: Rest
Tuesday: 5 mile run (47:38 min @ 9:32 min/mi)
Wednesday60 min Cross-training Rest
Thursday: 2 mile run (17:05 min @ 8:33 min/mi)
Friday: Rest
Saturday: MARATHON DAY!!! (4:19:41 @ 9:55 min/mi)
Sunday: Rest
TOTAL = 33.2 miles

Thoughts: Where do I even begin?!? I’ll make this short and sweet and leave the true thoughts to the actual marathon recap post. There isn’t much to share about Tuesday and Thursday’s runs other than the oddly calm feeling I had upon completing the final run before the marathon. It was crazy to think that 23 weeks of training had come to a close, crazy. The marathon itself was…wow. Just wow! I kept my cool until about 10PM the night before the race, at which point the anxiety crept in and kept me awake for a few hours until I popped a valerian root pill and finally fell asleep. My parents and I awoke to a cold and dreary Saturday morning. It rained 100% of the time during the marathon! Regardless, I ended up having a really great race. No resting/stopping/walking breaks, no bonking or hitting the wall, no exhaustion at the end. I ended with negative splits and energy to spare upon crossing the finish line! Oh what a feeling.

That night I felt a weird feeling come over me while I waited for sleep to come. The completion of the marathon felt oddly final in a grand-scheme-of-things sort of way. It’s hard to explain, but it was good. I felt like I had just crossed off a huge item on my bucket list for life and could move on to bigger and grander things. The best way to describe it would be with the door analogy – my ‘run a marathon’ door closed and many other doors opened in its place. The marathon was certainly a major life milestone and one I’ll forever remember.

My final thoughts on marathon training are simple – it’s a huge commitment with many sacrifices but it’s well worth it. Completely. For those who are on the fence about it, I encourage you to take the leap of faith and register for your first marathon. You won’t regret it! If you simply take it one week at a time, you’ll quickly find that marathon training can easily fit into your daily life. I’m walking (well, currently waddling) proof that you can still have a social life too!

So what’s next, you may wonder? Well, I secretly want to run a late spring marathon so I avoid training in the summer heat again. Although I will probably sign up for a 2015 fall marathon as well. I want to see what my body is truly capable of when it comes to 26.2 miles. But for now I’m looking forward to resting until November 1st, when I’ll hit the pavement yet again!

Thank you thank you thank you to everyone who has followed me on this crazy journey and supported me along the way. I hope you know just how much it meant to me!

♥ Irina

9 Comments

  1. October 14, 2014 / 9:01 am

    Congrats, girl! what a huge accomplishment!!

    • October 14, 2014 / 6:27 pm

      Thank you!!

  2. October 14, 2014 / 9:11 am

    Yay! I love that you loved it so much you are already considering your next! 🙂

    • October 14, 2014 / 6:28 pm

      Haha I am indeed! I want the next race to be a major run like NYC (I wish), MCM, or Chicago. But I think I’ll settle on another small one before then!

  3. October 14, 2014 / 1:22 pm

    Girl, I cannot BELIEVE how much you knocked it out of the park with your marathon. I mean, I can, because you killed it during training, but to have SUCH a good race, especially in the rain — WOWZA. I’m so so so so so happy for you!! I told you those hot runs would pay off in the end 😉 I can’t wait to hear all the details of the race!

    • October 14, 2014 / 6:29 pm

      Ahhh thank you so much!! And thanks again for all the advice and support you’ve given me this entire year. You have no idea just how much I appreciate it 🙂 🙂 CONGRATS to you as well!

  4. October 14, 2014 / 6:04 pm

    Run LA with me 😉

    • October 14, 2014 / 6:31 pm

      Girl trust me, I am very very seriously considering it. It falls perfectly in the spring! This might be a dumb question, but is LA already really hot then? Because you know how I feel about running in the heat…

      • October 16, 2014 / 8:56 pm

        I’m thinking it would get hot towards the end of the race, but I don’t think it will be crazy hot….at least I hope!