This was the last high mileage week for my training, so I guess my taper has technically started. As a nice surprise, fall kicked in and most of the days this week featured actual seasonal temperatures and I even broke out long sleeves for one of my runs. Some workouts were harder than normal, some easier giving the week a feel of cresting a hill.
I had a harder time with my strength work and long run than I thought. I ran into a stiff headwind for my two mile repeats and labored to complete most of them. Normally this is my favorite workout of the week, but for some reason mentally I did not feel good in the repeats. I couldn’t zone out and struggled to work through them. For my long run I got up before 5 am on Thursday to make sure I got it in before work. I didn’t get enough sleep before and picked a slightly hillier route that also made this a slog, but at least it was the last one.
My tempo runs moved from nine to ten mile this week, which coincided with my running the American Tobacco Trail 10 miler this Saturday. This worked out, as it was the distance I needed for my tempo run. I completed the race in an average of 7:04 per mile, which is better than I have done in previous tempos. It’s a nice confidence boost to start the ten mile sequence of tempos, but at the same time I am in a state of confusion about my race goals. I did a negative split in the race and my three fastest miles were my last three. I don’t want to bonk in the marathon, but I also don’t want to be too conservative in my goals. If I knew if this was an outlier or the sign I have been training well, it would be easier. But I can’t know that and will have to think hard about it.
Two more strength workouts, two more tempo runs to go. I’m getting nervous about the marathon. I feel ready, but I don’t know how ready I am. I have to think hard on that in the next week and think about my goals.