Marathon Training Update: 3 Weeks Out

This past weekend, I ate enough fajitas for two people on Saturday afternoon, enjoyed a few beers (because, carbs!), attended a wedding and then ran 20 miles Sunday afternoon after waiting out morning thunderstorms.

I spoke about it last week, but I’ve become a bottomless pit.

It’s not a bad thing. In fact, Winnie the Pooh pretty much describes concerned how I am about all the eating I’ve been doing:

All the Bothers // Winnie the Pooh

However, I’m about to cut back drastically because my mileage is going down drastically as I taper before my race… and that’s a little strange after all this running I’ve been doing.

Simply put: Running has taken up a large portion of my free time during the last few months. And now that I’ve got a bit more time on my hands, I have some reflections for y’all about marathon training. Because, you know, when you run, you’ve got a lot of time to think about all the things, including why you’re doing what you’re doing, what kind of food sounds good for dinner and how did you ever think this was a good idea? (And I have, y’all… You have no idea.)

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    The biggest thing I’ve learned during this process is you think something is impossible until you prove to yourself that it’s not.

    I thought it was impossible for me to run several sub-10-minute miles in a row… and then I did it. (There may or may not have been gleeful text messages exchanged with a friend including screenshots of my running app, proving I broke two of my three time goals for the year in a singular run.)

    I thought it was impossible for me to run 20 miles… and then I did it. (It wasn’t pretty, and I needed a little assistance from friends along the way. They perked me up at mile 13 with a combination of Gatorade, a cookie and headache medicine… and I finished the 20-miler stronger than I started.)

    And I thought it was impossible for me to feel ready to run a marathon… but I do. I’m still not 100% positive that it will be pretty or that I’ll hit my time goal, but you know what? I’m gonna run the race to the best of my ability. Crossing the finish line is more than enough for me, and I know it’s going to feel glorious.

    This training process has been physical, mental and crazy emotional, and I cannot believe that in less than three weeks, I’ll be lining up at the starting line to begin the final leg of this journey.

    While I’ll still readily admit that I am terrified, I cannot wait.

    Other running-related posts: That time I decided to train for and actually RUN a half marathonSunday Snippets: The Rouge-Orleans Edition33 Things Y’all Didn’t KnowSunday Snippets: The Belated Beach Edition / Fitness Goals, Eating Well and a 10-Day Challenge Review / Sunday Snippets: The #glitter200/Ragnar SoCal RecapRunner Food: An Introduction / Marathon Training Update: 1 Week OutRace Recap: OKC Memorial Marathon

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    About the Author:

    Erin Parker is a Southern gal living in Texas with her husband and two daughters. She started The Speckled Palate to share what she was cooking as a newlywed… and over the years, it’s evolved to capture her love for hosting. Specifically, the EASIEST, lowest key entertaining because everyone deserves to see their people and connect over good food. Learn more about her

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    1. Erin, I’m thrilled that this journey is proving to be a rewarding one for you. Sounds like you’re on the right path to a fun and successful 26.2! And congratulations on smashing your goals along the way. Hard work truly pays off, and with running, you get out of it exactly what you put into it. Cheering you on from NOLA!

    2. I have to admit my favorite part of this whole post is the Winnie the Pooh gif – I’m very familiar with that particular scene – he’s basically singing about exercising so he can eat.

      So you know, basically exactly what you were saying about eating and running. 🙂

      I’m still in awe of anyone that can run more than a 5k. I haven’t even run a 5k but at least I’m confident enough to know that I could if I tried (I’ve gotten close, anyway). I’m so happy that you’re getting so close to seeing all of your hard work pay off. Goals are scary business, but I know you got this. 🙂

    3. Love the Pooh gif! Congrats on beating a couple of your time goals, and good luck wrapping up training! It’s a sad day when you have to cut back on food, you could just say you’re pre-emptively carboloading 3 weeks in advance? I think that’s legit.

    4. I love the gif and your passion for running. You are an inspiration to anyone who is thinking about training for a marathon. You are going to rock it, I know it!

    5. I used to love the feeling of accomplishment after a long run and the feeling of entitlement that I deserved to eat that smorgasbord for brunch! =) Good luck with the taper and race day!!

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