The other day, I realized how quickly the Big Sur Half Marathon is coming up. My first thought: “Ooh, I better get on training for that.” My second thought: “Okay Michelle, try not do something stupid like accidentally tear ANOTHER toenail off.”
I have to log some serious mileage the next few months and am in the midst of hunting for a great training schedule. My friend passed this one along from Shape magazine, and it looks pretty doable. It also looks flexible enough that I can incorporate strength training, which I don’t plan to give up. (If you have any recommendations on schedules you like, please let me know!)
I’m so excited for this race. Not only will it be a fun girls’ weekend — I’m meeting up with my friend Kelly, who lives in Cali — but it will be a chance to put all the training I’ve been doing this past year to good use. I also figure it will be great motivation to keep running outside once the cooler weather hits. (It pains me just to write “cooler weather.” Sigh.)
As excited as I am, I have a few concerns, things like:
- Will my right knee give me shooting pains again? About 10 years ago, I was halfway through training for a full marathon when my knee konked out on me. When I was 13 years old, I messed my knee up while tubing at the lake and ripped some “non-essential tissue,” according to my sports doctor. But in the midst of my marathon training, the shooting pain started. I couldn’t run for two months and missed the race. (I also determined that my “non-essential tissue” seemed pretty, um, essential.) Anyways, I’m hopeful that by cutting down to a half marathon — and by increasing my mileage slowly — I’ll protect my knee from injury.
- Will I be able to handle the hilly race? Hills scare me, but I’m getting better thanks to advice from a running guru. He suggested I lean forward slightly and land more on the balls of my feet (as opposed to the heels) while running up heels. It’s a big help.
- Will competing in the 2011 Wineman Duathlon, which I covered last year for Maclean’s, hinder my training? If the name doesn’t give it away, the duathlon involves two things: running and drinking. I had fun just watching the race last year and think I could handle the “sprint” distance, which is three miles and four beers. Here are a few athletes from last year’s event:
- Last but not least, I need a new running hat. What colour should I buy? Stressful, I know.
Training starts soon, so I’ll keep you posted on how it all goes.