Tuesday, April 29, 2014

My Fall Marathon Decision

I wrote yesterdays race report in a hurry.  I wanted to get it out of the way, so I could move forward with my training plans.

I have made the decision not to run a marathon this year.  I haven't raced a marathon since March 2010 and I really want to run a marathon and qualify for the Boston Marathon again.  But, the reality is I just can't fit anymore training into my schedule without it throwing the rest of my life out of balance.

I could train to finish a marathon.  But, I don't want to just finish a marathon.  I have a lot of unfinished business with the marathon.  I have run a total of 16 marathons.   Some of these races have been wonderful successes.
Rock n Roll AZ 2008
I'm crying because it took me 9 years to finally BQ again!
They were tears of joy.
Other marathons have been not so good.
St. George 2009
I'm smiling in this picture but, I'm really bummed
because I missed my time goal by over 10 minutes.
I have lofty goals of someday breaking 3:30 for the marathon. My PR is a 3:31:49.  When I ran St. George in 2009 I was really pumped up, I had recently run a 1:31 half on a downhill course.  I thought I had a 3:20 in the bag.  Well, it didn't go exactly how I hoped it would go, I think I bit off more than I could chew and I should have focused on breaking 3:30 first.  

The marathon is a tricky beast.  So much patience and restraint has to be used in the first half or you will pay dearly for it in the later miles.  I have been running with a Garmin for a little over a year now and it has made a world of difference in my training and racing.  I wish I would have had this nifty tool years ago.

Getting back to the present day... I have a ton of marathon lust.  But, I just can't commit to the distance right now.  

Training for the Mustang Half Marathon opened my eyes up to speed work and longer distance runs.  I was able to handle the additional training and my mileage topped out in the mid 30's.  To run a quality marathon I would need to add an additional 10-15 miles per week.  

I work full time and I have two small kids.   I don't know how or where I would be able to fit this additional mileage in.  My husband is very supportive of my sport but, it does take away from some of our family time.  He watches the kids on the weekend mornings while I go run.  It's okay if I head out for an 8-10 mile long run.  But, when I start thinking about 16, 18, 20 mile long runs that need to happen during the bulk of my training I start to feel anxious.  I'll be disappearing for hours at a time every weekend. In addition these long runs leave me pretty wiped out.  How fair is it to my kids, if mommy is always worn down and snippy on Sundays?  Also my husband works a job that is somewhat seasonal. The summer is the busiest time of the year for him. He sometimes works on  Saturday mornings just to get caught up.  I just don't think it's fair for me to impose a marathon training schedule on my family right now.

They will only be this small for a short period of time.
Running a marathon can wait for now.

 I've tried to come up with ways to fit the miles in.  Treadmill runs at 4am? Waking up at 2 am to run in the dark? Running at 9pm when everyone goes to sleep? It just doesn't seem like a good idea right now. I'm also thinking that fall marathons just won't work for me period.  I live in Las Vegas, Nevada. Training in the summer sucks.  I still run outdoors but, I spend a lot more time on the treadmill than I would prefer. I'm thinking I will eventually have to find a spring marathon that is PR friendly. 

Since I have decided not to run a marathon this fall, I am going to focus on the half marathon and I'm going to really try to lower my time.  I have two goal races in mind. I will give more details in a future post.


  1. All of my long races are off the calendar for an injury and it's been almost...relaxing? I mean, I just go to the gym and work out for an hour and I'm done for the day, like a normal person. No more weekly mileage goals or stressing about getting my run done for the day. Of course I miss running, what I'm trying to say is that I get why you'd postpone marathon training until your kids are older. Mine are about the same age and life with them is a full contact sport haha. I bet you'll break your PR one day, when they are older and it's easier to leave them to go focus on your training. :)

    1. I was always really impressed with your mileage/volume. You also shared your struggles with balancing your home life with your high mileage. I'm sorry that your back injury changed has your running for the foreseeable future.... I hope that your road to recovery isn't a long one.