Tough Challenges, Big Adventures. The Crazy is About to Begin!

It's Taper Time! If you know me, you know I love pushing my limits and setting new challenges for myself. Next week kicks off my newest EPIC Challenge.

I'll be racing the Spartan Race Arizona Super on Saturday, 02/10 followed by the Arizona Sprint on 02/11. Then, just 6 days later, I'll be running my first ultra marathon--The Black Canyon 60k! The pre-race jitters are already beginning. 😱😱

If you've been following my journey on social media, you've probably noticed I've been putting in some serious mileage. 40+ a week. Yet part of me still doesn't feel quite ready. Although, I never feel quite "ready" for big races.


The really challenging part for this latest adventure will be racing two events back to back, followed by my longest run EVER just a few days later. Not to mention making sure I'm properly recovered in between them.

I've been seeing my PT once a week for dry needling and cupping to keep all the problem areas in check. So fingers crossed I can keep everything together until after!


The one part of my training I regret is not getting in as much strength training as I'd like. That's going to make the strength obstacles at Spartan that much more tough. But like most runners, I struggle with balancing long runs for endurance and strength workouts. So it'll be rough for sure, but I'm ready to tackle it!


A positive part of all my running, besides the increased endurance, is what I've learned about my personal fueling needs. Everyone is different. And it takes a lot of trial and error to determine what suits you best.

For me, I've discovered I actually need to eat something every few miles, and then when I hit 20+miles I start adding in something every mile. That's a lot of bars, chews, bites, and more. Thankfully, I'm a pack rat on my run and carry more than enough with me. For the Black Canyon 60k, I'll be utilizing both the stocked aid stations and drop bags. Let's hope there's good weather!


Now, pre-race jitters aren't new to me. I've learned to deal with them. But this time around the "taper crazies" are hitting me somewhat hard. It's tough to silence all the inner questions:

"Did I run enough?"
"Did I run too much?"
"Will my knee/Achilles/calf/any other problem area hold up?"
"How fast should I go?"
"How slow should I take it?"

And last but not least... "what's AFTER this?" Of course, for that last question, I have tons of great plans and big ideas for 2018. But I want to hold off on planning too much until I've completed this goal.


Training for this challenge has already taught me a lot. So come race day(s), I'm certain I'll learn even more. This adventure will help me define what comes next. But for now, I've got to just quiet the questions and focus on enjoying the experience ahead.


I'm also super fortunate to have friends racing with me and joining me for part or all of this adventure. Having them with me on many of my training runs has been a huge help in staying on track and having someone to share the misery with! LOL.


I've always said that training is tough part, and race day is supposed to be the FUN part. Here's to focusing on that finish line and hoping I get there in one piece!


What's YOUR secret to taming the taper crazies? Share them with me in the comments below. Thanks for reading and happy running!





Comments

  1. Congratulations on getting through all the training in one piece!!! Good luck with the spartan back to backs & the big one - cant wait to hear all about it!!! I've been reading up on fueling for ultra's as will be doing my first 50km ultra in September. So interesting hearing about what works & doesn't work - you are right, everyone is different!!!

    No secret to the taper crazies sorry!!! Although I like to binge watch something on netflix to take my mind off my mind LOL!!!!

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