Well, it's about that time. Time to slow things up a bit. My marathon training gets underway in two weeks. The last few months I have been taking it easy. Running twice a week. Five miles or less. I thought I would hate being that "inactive," but really it's been great... with exception of the ridiculous heat.
The most noticeable improvement from these short distance runs is my pace. I have gotten much quicker. I am now consistently running miles on an 8:15-8:30 minute pace. However, now is the time to hit the brakes. There is no way I can keep that kind of pace for a 10 mile or longer training run, at least not yet. Don't get me wrong, I plan on improving my pace for long distances. I just know I can't run that quickly right out of the gate. I do, however, know my marathon pace next January should and will be faster than the 10:56 minute pace I had during my first half marathon in February.
Another change that needs to happen is my food intake. I recently read an article called "Are you over-training or under-eating?" In my case, the answer is under-eating. My last 5K training run had to be cut short because my body couldn't handle it. I stopped sweating at around 2 and a half mile, which is a sign of dehydration, and started feeling light headed. You really need to drink lots of water and eat several small meals a day to keep yourself fueled for training. I guess that means I need to get better at packing a lunch and snacks each day. Foods that are high in protein and complex carbohydrates. I tend to eat very vegetarian in the summer months. It's just too hot for heavy foods.
I have to say, I am both excited and nervous about my upcoming training. It is definitely going to be an uphill battle that will take a toll on me physically, mentally and emotionally. I think I'm ready for it though. Positive thoughts = positive outcome. Bring it!