Sunday, July 15, 2012

NYC Marathon 2012: Training Begins

The NYRR sends me one of these every week
Tomorrow morning, I begin my official training for the New York City marathon. Sixteen weeks lie between me and November 4th. I feel like it's the night before the first day of school.

My last weekend of pre-training training went well, fitness-wise. I ran a wonderful 9.5 miles on Saturday morning, a combination of my Continental and History 101 runs (yes, I name my runs, and yes, it's strange that this is the first I've blogged about the habit), through the Inner Richmond, and basically along the full perimeter of Golden Gate Park, with the western stretch directly on Ocean Beach. As I ran alongside Big Rec, around mile three, I was almost run over by a herd of fleet-footed high school cross country runners; I could hear them coming for a few minutes, and their exuberance was infectious. Some of my happiest memories of Golden Gate Park are of running in it as a high school student with my cross-country teammates, especially in the sunshine and crisp air of a San Francisco fall. I couldn't stop smiling for the next several minutes, and a couple of miles later, after passing the Chain of Lakes, I hit an awesome runner's high that lasted all the way until I was running east past the angling pools, when I started to get a little hungry. Fortunately, I soon ran into my dear CMA, who was out for her Saturday long run! I flagged her down in my funny way, and we stopped to catch up for about fifteen minutes. Our chat was just the boost I needed, and although I was almost run over again by the same herd of high schoolers, I quickly ran the few miles home to my favorite post-run green smoothie and chocolate milk (not combined, just side by side).  

This morning I tried to sleep in, but woke up at 7:00 and could tell I was awake for good. The omnipresent summer fog seemed to call for a swim, so I walked over to Rossi and swam a very (very) slow half mile in the bathtub that is the Rossi pool. I can't complain too much; if I'm not doing a real swim workout, then I want to be warm. Still, my goggles fogged up every few laps, and I started to feel like I was sweating in the water--not a pleasant feeling. A quick shower and walk home, and I stretched out on the couch with my second breakfast and the paper, with no other workout obligations until Monday morning. 

And soon, Monday morning will be here! I decided on a training plan--I'm going with Peter Sagal's--and thought about my goals for this particular marathon. There are three. First, have as much fun as possible while training (i.e. train hard, but don't take it too seriously). Second, don't train at the expense of the other things I love in my life (i.e. fit training around my life, don't fit my life around training). And third, run a great race in New York (i.e. enjoy it!). 

Day One starts in eight hours. The schedule calls for five hilly miles. Allez!


  1. Good luck, Caitlin! You are guaranteed to have at least three fans cheering you on in NYC in November (and likely a couple million more). I wish I could run a few of the miles with you!

  2. Awe! I'm psyched to see that our chance encounter was a pick me up :) Hope training's going well and to see you again soon.