Twelve weeks left til the 16-week Runner’s World Challenge starts for the Marine Corps Marathon. There’s a temptation to not start anything ambitious until July 6th when the RWC officially starts. But if you look at the training plans, well mine is a bit ambitious (for me) and there’s no way I can just start from zero and jump into it. I have to make these next 12 weeks count!
In a way there’s a satisfaction in starting this early because it feels like, for ONCE, you decided to study a month before exams rather than cram the night before. On the other hand, I’m wondering why my RWC run plan is only 16 weeks. But I’m reading Meb For Mortals right now and I’m getting really excited about crafting a run plan and strategy and voicing goals I have for this marathon and upcoming marathons. Once I finish the book I’ll write a proper review but so far the book is amazing. It reads like a Q&A session and it’s very easy to grab main points quickly. Imagine being trapped in an elevator with Meb Keflezighi and being like, “YES!! Now I get to ask him all the things I’ve always wanted to know!” That’s how it reads, and it’s awesome.
I’m forcing myself to create a calendar this week so I can start a 12 week training plan on Monday. In looking at the 16-week RWC, they have you starting by running 5 times a week for 27 miles total. Then you go up to 6 days a week and 48 miles per week at your peak! That is so crazy!! I haven’t run that mileage since high school cross country combined with other sports I had to run for. I remember running at least 50 miles a week back in the day…. and I also remember eating french fries and ice cream every day back then too. I wonder if I can eat like that if I run 50 miles a week now? (Meb says no)
I’m nervous about running that many miles and having to work on speed for the first time ever. I figure I should get up to a minimum of 30 miles per week initially and then, by the end of the 12-week training plan, be up to 40 miles per week. My logic is that if I am already comfortable with the mileage, then all I have to work on is speed. And all the great coaches say not to build mileage and speed at the same time.
On a side note, it’s crazy how many weeks go into building for a single race. But it’s not as if all of this is just for Marine Corps. I also just want to get my pace back down to what it used to be. Before I had kids, my half marathon pace would have put me easily into qualifying for Boston. Now I wonder if I’ll ever get there again. It’s something I need to find out. I’m not sure what is hampering me right now. Is it my weight? My low mileage? The heat? My exhaustion from school/kids/work/life that I never had before? It doesn’t matter. This is the hand I’m holding and it’s a great hand and I’m gonna make it win!
I want to qualify for Boston… and this is where it starts!