Since marathon training began, I have had few days of true rest. And by true rest I mean no mile long walks to the fountains with K in the jogging stroller; no back-and-forth to the stray park, library, and grocery store with my 21 pound toddler in a stroller; no walks back-and-forth to the grocery store with several bags of groceries. My rest day (Friday) has turned into a 2-3 mile day. Add those miles to the 30+ I'm running each week as part of my training and you get...
One tired, sore marathon training mama.
That's right folks. I'm sore and tired.
After last Thursdays 5am five-miler, I realized that something needed to change. I need to mix things up and add some rest into my routine or I wouldn't survive marathon training.
That day I received an email from a woman at church who teaches yoga and pilates. I responded to her email and asked her for suggestions on ways to improve flexibility and core strength. On Sunday after church, we had a wonderful conversation about stretching. Since then I've done some research into stretching and am putting together a 5 days a week 10 minutes per day stretching plan for myself. Once implemented I am going to add a 5 days a week 10 minutes per day core strengthening plan.
Now, one might think:
Hey stupid, you're adding more training/exercising to your plan. How is this going to help you combat your soreness and tiredness?
Yes, it is more time exercising, BUT from everything I'm reading I think it will be worthwhile. I know I need to stretch more. My hamstrings and achilles tendons tell me this each time I run. And core strength should help my posture to improve; not to mention make my tummy a little tighter. I'm also hoping it will help me release all of the stress that I carry around in the middle of my back.
Stretching 101 kicks off tonight around 8pm in the basement of my house. I'm planning to follow some of the stretching exercises highlighted by the folks at Yoga Body Naturals. I'm also skipping my cross training workout today to allow my body to rest a bit before running 6 miles at race pace tomorrow and a 15 miler on Saturday.
In addition to starting my new stretching and strengthening routines, I'm thinking about cutting two things I love out of my diet: 1) caffeine - yes, that means both coffee and coke zero; and 2) starchy snack foods. I might have to ease into giving up both - no need to induce a week of caffeine withdrawl headaches. And I'm definitely not planning to give up coffee days before I hang out with my father, who loves his coffee!
Plans and milestones related to stretching, core strengthening, and cutting back/giving up will be forthcoming...