Thursday, December 9, 2010

Anyone Hit a Wall after a good First Week? I Did!

This is week 2 of my LA Marathon training.

I only ran two 3 mile runs, one 4 mile run and then one 5 mile run last week.

This week so far, it has been even lighter - only two 3 mile runs. Last week, I felt so strong running the 3, 4-milers that I felt so hopeful about my first marathon. This week, i've been so tired - and my runs were stiff, heavy and just painfully slow.... WHAT IS GOING ON????

Fortunately, before I started beating myself up for feeling weak and slow, I read a brief article on Runners' World that it is common that Week 2 could feel like a challenge, because the body needs time to adapt to the physical stress of the initial training runs, no matter how short and easy they may be. Of course then I recalled that I suffered a 10-day flu leading up to the first week of training! The first week, tho, still having the accumulated strength in the legs from resting for a few weeks after the Big Sur Half Marathon, the run felt pretty good. I was excited about shedding the flu and just starting off my first attempt for a full 26.2 miler!

Every day this week has been bit of a challenge, which was a total 180 from last week - I felt like I could sleep forever every morning, I felt exhausted in the middle of the day during work, and completely depleted by the time I got home. I was eating well, taking my vitamins, etc..., but my body just got tired. I still ran my 3-milers, but those 3 miles felt like 13. I was tempted to get frustrated, but I had to tell myself that it was just part of the process, which will inevitably taking me to week 3. It would be really interesting to see how i feel next week!

I am sure I'm not the only one feeling like this sometimes - with not just training, but with a lot of other things - just starting a simple exercise regime, changing your diet, working, etc... the first week seem exciting, strong, smooth and successful, then the second week comes, you're doing the same thing, keeping the same excitement, but for some reason, things are not working out as well as it did last week...and then you go, "what am I doing wrong?" or "is this not meant for me?"

I don't think I'm doing anything wrong - if anything, this is a sign that i should stay more focused than last week, to keep my mind strong not to give up this week (and get enough rest and eat well) ! And yes, it did pass my mind that maybe this full marathon thing could put me at serious risk given the conditions I have, but there was no way i could choose the thought that this was not meant for me, especially without even trying running any longer than 13.1 miles (the longest distance i've ran in one setting so far). Usually, from the lessons I learned in life to date, it is always the challenging and doubtful times that we NEED to face and overcome that will lead us to achieving our goals. In fact, not that i'm promoting suffering (i'm not a masochist, altho some of you may disagree), but it is really those tough times that make our achievements so much sweeeeeeeeeter. :)

It is too early to tell. If you just started walking, exercising, eating right, etc. recently, and you feel like it's not changing things much, or in fact feeling worse than before, don't let that frustration throw you off. Just keep doing what you're doing, believe in the positive outcome you can take a little break too (just don't let it last). The minute we start complaining and doubting and nagging about why it CAN'T be done, then we all know...then we go back to square one. Then we start dreaming about it again...from far away...just dreaming a distant dream....then feeling bad about ourselves for NOT doing anything about it! We don't want to feel like that, do we? Just look ahead, keep going... our body takes time adapting, but then when it gets to a certain level, we usually take leaps! Just wait for that moment, while keep working at it.... nothing feels better than feeling that moment... it will come.

Tonight I will rest my tired body, then get up early tomorrow for a quick 3 mile run. I will not be afraid of how tired I could feel again....i will just go.... then enjoy every quick or slow, fun or painful, smooth or tight moment... because i know that all this leads to...that one day I feel everything is running right, smoothly and....then I finally can start seeing the finish line of LA Marathon, and me crossing that thing.

week 2 has been a bitch, but I'm not going to turn into one.

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