30.5 weeks. That’s how long my last training cycle was- from kickoff through the Gobble Wobble 5k- my last race of 2016. If we count from the first week I ran of the cycle through my fall marathon, it was 28 weeks long. Guys, that’s a long time.
I’ll be honest, it was a rough training cycle and race season. I’m not sure I ever hit my mileage goal for a week. I had some big changes in my personal and professional life, I was super tired, I was dealing with an injury for over 3 months. My whole daily and weekly and monthly schedules shifted.
Dealing with bursitis revealed a weakness in my hips and a form problem. Ok, so I knew I had a form problem with my feet (thanks race photos) but didn’t understand the mechanics of why or how to correct it. Going to physical therapy 2 hours a week for a month helped me start to figure this out. I’m going to keep doing the exercises over the winter, and even icing my hip for a few more weeks. Next step is to look into form drills to help me make the necessary correction, not just for a few steps, or minutes, but for miles.
I committed to not registering for any spring/summer races until at least New Year’s. I also won’t run longer than 6 miles at a time until 2017 either. I haven’t taken a season away from racing since I started running in 2010. So it’s probably good for me to at least take 6 weeks to regroup, strengthen, rest, and think.
If I can dream a little here, I’d really like to get my half marathon under 2 hours. But I know that to work on speed, I need to improve my form, make sure the bursitis is fully gone, and do this smart. I don’t want to end up with the same, or a different, injury in the spring because I didn’t take rest and recovery seriously enough.
My fall races were up and down- one purposely slow half marathon, one painful half marathon, one pain-free but slower than I hoped marathon, and a new PR 5K. What a rollercoaster! I know my injury and inconsistency in training were major contributors to some disappointing races. But hitting a new PR in my 5K showed me that I can run faster, and I can keep improving.
Here’s to some rest and new adventures in the next training cycle and year!