Pros & Cons of Timing

Timing is extremely important in running sports. Not just for gauging completion in racing, but timing on a grander scale. Let’s see if I can make sense.

Previously, when I signed up for any race of the half marathon or marathon distance I did so at the exact edge of when training needed to begin. Except for one that is an exception, but we’ll get to it later. Keep in mind that outside of this most recent injury, I was running regularly. So when I say training I mean the modification of my running schedule with an exact race and/or time goal at a race in mind.

I had been told that generally if you were already at a good level in terms of running and weekly mileage, the coaches I worked with would create marathon training plans of about 4 months in length. Half marathon plans could be shorter, but most individuals who use them are first time half marathoners and so benefit from having an extra few weeks of structured running.

So I choose a marathon in January 2012. I started my marathon training at the beginning of September 2011. Nearly 4 months exactly of preparation.

My first half marathon I had already been running casually for nearly a year, so I only had about 2 and a half months between registration and race day. My other three half marathons were about the same and even overlapped with marathon training. Though one of those I was convinced to run the night before it happened—not much preparation there. By the time I decided to run an event, it was time to jump straight into training.

That may be why this charity team and the MCM has me all over the place. Don’t get me wrong, I’m super excited to be involved with the TLT4C Endurance team! It’s just that I’ve never had a race planned so far in advance. So instead of jumping straight into training, I have to keep myself entertained with something of pre-training running.

It’s driving me bonkers! Because I know I plan to run the race, I feel like I should be doing very targeted runs to prepare. But this far in advance, that’d not only be pointless but a waste of my energy. Instead I can direct it towards good runs and other¬†endeavors.

At least on the bright side, this nervous energy (or whatever you want to call it) from waiting to be “in training” can be used to fuel the crazy that my life is about to turn into.

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