And So it Begins…

At first it seemed like my first week of marathon training was off to a less than idyllic start. While we had a wonderful holiday weekend in Michigan with friends and family, we also experienced some pretty horrific travel delays that made it difficult for me to set a relaxed tone while we were there. Since I was having some cramping in my calf that I couldn’t seem to shake, I decided to take several days rest, not exercise at all during our holiday, and complete the first run of my 18 week training program this morning, our first full day back at home.

I’m happy to report that after a lot of foam rolling and massage, my calf has started to feel a lot better and I had no pain on my slow 3 mile jog this morning. While it might take longer for me to know for sure, I think some of my improvement might be attributable to the magnesium oil I have been massaging into the back of my legs for the past few days. This is something my mom actually recommended and gave to me over a year ago, but that I never used or researched because I thought it seemed a little gimmicky. When I was at her house this weekend and mentioned my calf, she brought it up again and massaged some in for me right away. When I told her of my skepticism she replied, “Well of course you don’t have to use it, but it’s not a gimmick, the science is there.” After only a few minutes I had to admit, something seemed to be happening. After three days of continuous use, both my calves feel looser and more malleable. As many of you know, my mom is a holistic nutritionist and the source of almost all of the food and supplement advice I follow. While I have taken a magnesium supplement at night for years, I wish I would have heeded her advice on taking it topically a long time ago; I’ve had a lot of cramping issues and this seems like something that could really help long term; I will keep you posted!

To wrap up this check-in, I want to leave you with my three big takeaways from my inaugural marathon training run this morning. I’m kind of glad not everything went according to plan right from the start–something tells me that rolling with the punches will be the absolute name of the game.

  1. It’s so clear that diet is going to be key. I ate a lot of junk this weekend and I could feel it this morning. My body was full of inflammation and my joints were creaking like the tin man. Instead of giving myself a hard time about it I just took it slow on my run and got back to my normal diet. My incentive for clean eating gets even stronger when I have something to train for cause my reward is a body that feels lighter and moves more freely. I look forward to getting that back and keeping it up in the coming weeks. I’ll definitely have some posts on what I’m eating since it’ll be pretty different from the normal carbo-loaders, stay tuned–I can’t wait to hear all your opinions and experiences on this.
  2. A training plan is kind of a relief to an over-achiever. When I’m not training for something, I push myself to do a little extra on every single run. That little extra ranges anywhere from a half mile to three or four, depending on the day. I walk through life with a little voice in my head that’s always whispering, “you’re not enough.” I do work daily to try to quiet that voice but unfortunately, it frequently reaches across and touches most aspects of my life, including running. Marathon training gives me permission to shut this voice up and stick with the plan, and I love it. I know that I am not actually doing myself a favor by tacking mileage onto every run. In fact, I could be hurting myself and risking injury. Today my training called for 3 miles, and since I reached that mark before I reached my apartment building, I cooled down with a walk the rest of the way home (which is something I should probably always be doing anyway!). I think it’s going to be a huge weight off my back to head out to every run knowing that if I complete what’s on the schedule, I have done enough.
  3. I am so excited and grateful to be doing this. I do a lot of my shorter runs inside on the treadmill cause I like to mix it up with intervals, but I nixed that routine today; I wanted to be out in the morning with my city, in full acknowledgment of the start of this journey. I know November 5th is the ultimate goal, but for me, this is the starting line. It took a long time for me to get here, and I am so happy and grateful that I get to train and run in NYC. If I complete all the miles in my training plan I will have run 435.1 before race day. Looking at that number and completing these 3 miles today it’s never been more clear–it’s a marathon, not a sprint. I have a long way to go and lot’s to learn–I’ll be sharing all of it with you along the way–I hope you’ll comment and share your stories with me as well.

IMG_5636

 

51 thoughts on “And So it Begins…

  1. What’s it actually like running in NYC? I’ve never been so only have social media to portray it to me, but is it not really crowded? Or are there secret quiet areas you can go? (I’m now picturing really beautiful parks and hills ha ha). Good luck with the training!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I LOVE running here, there’s lots of variance. The parks and the bridges give you lots of opportunities for hill work, and as long as you are out early in the morning crowds are not a problem. Also, there are really only “crowds” in midtown, where most of the tourists go but most runners would never run there!
      If you ever do come here you have to run in Central Park–there’s really nothing like it!! Thanks for reading Ella!!

      Like

  2. hi Cat,
    Congrats on your NYC marathon adventure: big deal, and hope it goes well. I resonated with a lot of your training comments. I do have some experience with the topical magnesium and its good. My fabulous body worker Moe put me onto it a few years back. Don’t use it all the time, but it can really help when I am struggling. Hope you are continuing to heal well and train. Cheers to you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Steph for your well wishes and also for dropping by and reading! My Mom had a body worker for a long time, sounds kind of wonderful.

      Glad to be following your tri journey as well–good luck with everything! x

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Make sure to high five as many kids as you can in NYC. LOL. I had so much fun doing that. You chose a great race to run your first one in. The crowd support is incredible. I’m looking forward to Chicago. I’ve been there a few times, but this time, I’ll get to explore by running. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Will do with the kiddos ❤️. Very happy NYC is my first, it’s my city so it all feels very special.
        Happy to be following your journey to Chicago, there are so many great bloggers running that race!
        Please stop by and drop me some tips anytime 😍.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Love this – all of your points apply to me too. I’m back on the wagon of eating to properly fuel my body (although I still have had a few transgressions) – I think it’ll take me a while to really embrace it. And I adore my training plan – I, too, need it to stop me from going overboard. Some days I don’t want to do what’s on it but I won’t skip it because the training plan is king!!! Good luck with it all – can’t wait to hear more about your journey 🙂

    Like

  4. OK so I’ve never heard of topical magnesium. I do know it’s a muscle relaxant taken in pill form. Keep us posted on how the topical may help! And yes, by marathon day, you’ve logged so many miles and learned so much about yourself through the training that the marathon itself is just icing on the cake to all those months of effort and sacrifice 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks lady! Yes, so many people wondering about the topical magnesium, I will definitely do a post on it in a couple weeks once I’ve been using it for a little longer but so far so very good!
      Thanks so much for your encouragement, very excited to finally be starting this journey!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Yay!! You’re going to rock your training!! So far, my first three weeks have been all jumbled up!! I have made my miles and workouts, but not necessarily according to the plan…but the plan is just a guide right??

    This will be my third marathon and I used my first kind of like a training run. I had never run 26.2 and didn’t want to but any undue stress on the run. I set out to improve on my time on the second one and hope to do the same with the third… but I want to see all that Chicago has to offer, so we’ll have to see how that goes!!

    I’m excited to follow along with your training!!

    Jodi

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Jodi!! Chicago is so amazing (the city, obvi ive never run the race!). I went to school there and lived there for a couple years after as well, it’s so great. Who knows what the future holds but I would love to follow your lead and do marathons in other places in the future. I always thought I would just do one, but now my husband and I are talking about how cool it might be to do one overseas!
      I imagine your training is a bit jumbled–don’t you have a wedding come up?! You are officially Wonder Woman to me–have no idea how you are doing all of it!!
      Thanks for following along Jodi, can’t wait to see all the excitement coming your way as well 😍.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’ll have to recommend a few places to eat!!! We love to try different places when we’re out!!! We are staying downtown Saturday and Sunday so we don’t have to fight traffic and can enjoy the post marathon party!!!

        Yes, two weeks til Vegas!!! I’m not sure how much running we’ll get in out there but we’re looking forward to it!!!

        Traveling overseas for races would be exciting!!! I follow a few people that have done it, I’m sure the two of you would enjoy the experience.

        Like

      2. Girl and the Goat…ooh and little a Goat across the street for brekkie! Make a reservation soon (I think they allow 3 months in advance but they book up pretty quickly). We still go to Chicago once a year usually and we eat there every time we are in town–SO delicious!!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. I take a magnesium supplement, but I actually haven’t heard of using it topically. That sounds really interesting.

    I try to *almost* always do a cool down walk. I got into the habit a few years back. I do think it’s helpful. Sometimes I misjudge my turnaround (like yesterday) and it’s a little longer than necessary.

    Funny, I think I’m the opposite — I’ll stick to a training plan almost 100% (I’m learning not to do that), but when it’s an off season, I don’t push myself. Unless I just feel like it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww you guys, so glad to have you!! You know I will be following your journey as well-from what I can tell it sounds like you are doing a little more than 5ks over there–wasn’t there a run AFTER a 5k? Aren’t you THOSE people now?!? LOL.
      But seriously, so excited to be sharing all this with you guys– Thanks for following along! x

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Yeehah!! Welcome to the marathon training club. I do the exact same thing with over-reaching and have had to work hard not to do that on this marathon journey (I’ve still done it a couple of times I’m afraid). I’ve also started taking my diet and nutrition a lot more seriously and can already feel the difference. I still allow myself a treat after a hard session though 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Ali! Yeah it’s funny, I’ve made some recent tweaks to my diet that have been good, but have also made it more uncomfortable when I have “treats”. The new tweaks are centered around fueling for the extra miles and finding better energy–they are working, but I am wondering what it’s going to mean for my cheat day! We will see- it’s all a learning process, right? Hope your day went well! x

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yesterday was my first Speed session of the plan – 10 x 400m, with 200m recoveries. My legs ache today! Allowed myself banana protein pancakes for breakfast after that session (which I did at 5am!) 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Apologies if I’ve commented three times, WordPress was being a PITA! Anyway, I’m really looking forward to following your marathon training. After a few days of not so healthy eating, I definitely need to work on number one on your list. After being injured since the start of the year I also need to remember number three! I’m sometimes guilty of not actually enjoying my training sessions.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Emma!! Thanks so much for following me on my journey–you are training for a half right? Is this your first, or have you done one before? It’s funny your comment about a “few days” of not eating so healthy, it made me realize that I need to find a balance. Sometimes I get really into all or nothing thinking when it comes to food. I know how much better my body feels when I eat clean, but I also have to remember that I need a treat now and then for my sanity. But also, I have to remember that one treat doesn’t mean throw everything to shit that day! It’s all a process I guess but ready to get into some type of groove.
      Can relate to you on the injury as well–my big challenge will be running smart but without fear. Hmm…maybe that’s a post idea!? More soon. Please come back and chat often Emma, thanks!

      Like

  9. Hanna @ minimal marathoner

    Whoo hoo congrats on kicking off your training! I have friends who have run NYCM and they say it is the experience of a lifetime. Enjoy every minute!!

    Go easy on yourself in the first weeks of training if things aren’t always going according to plan. It is way better to have this stuff happen early on so you can work out the kinks before the real important work begins. You still have a LONG time to get where you need to be, and you’ll need to save your energy and focus for your most demanding peak weeks of training when you need it most. What happens now is important to lay the foundation for later, but your marathon success is not going to hinge on anything that happens in the first 5 weeks of training. Excited to follow along!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hanna! I feel so lucky to be on the receiving end of such great advice–thank you so much. My head can get crazy-yesterday I was actually questioning whether my training plan was strenuous enough and I thought maybe I shouldn’t be doing the Novice 1. But, I am a novice!! Hearing from you and others to take it easy is really just what I needed to hear. Looking at my program, the mileage builds plenty, especially after week 5, like you mentioned. Thank you so much for your guidance and so happy you will be following along–I will need ALL of your wise words!! x

      Like

  10. Yay! I can’t wait to follow your training as I train for my own marathon, which is about a month before yours. What an exciting time – I have a few friends running NY this year as well. Great post – I have similar thoughts on this as well. I’m really liking sticking to a training plan, which is something I haven’t done much of in the past. Looking forward to future posts!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Magnesium oil sounds like magic, wish I’d read this before training for my marathon!!
    My first week of my training plan wasn’t great either and I actually remember not wanting to share it but I did because that’s real life!! I had good runs, great runs, awful runs, painful runs, rubbish weeks, ok-ish weeks and breakthrough weeks that’s just how running goes! I’m so excited to read your training and marathon story YOU’VE GOT THIS!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah man thank you Ang, that’s so good to hear–definitely trying to let go of any expectations and just take things day by day. And yes! Magnesium oil–it’s definitely doing something, you can use it all over your body from what I’ve read-some women even use it for menstrual cramps!!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. wow. This is exciting. I’m also training for a marathon, and its so cool to follow your journey. I can’t wait to read about your nutrition, I need to get back to eating right, and always looking for advice. I can’t wait to read more.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m so glad to follow your journey as well (btw, what’s your name? Or should I call you Hawaii? 😍, couldn’t find it on your blog). I just checked out your page, this is your 4th marathon, is that right? So amazing. I’m sure I will be needing advice from you!! When is your marathon and which one are you doing this year? I saw that you did the one in Paris, that must have been so amazing, I love it there.
      So glad to have you along for the ride! Please come back and put your two cents in often 😍.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My name is Noelani 😁 It’s very wonderful to meet you Cat 😁That is correct, this will be my 4th Marathon. I’ve done LA Marathon two consecutive years, and did Paris Marathon this year. Paris was amazing. I didn’t have time to see and do all that I wanted to, and the heat kicked my butt during marathon. It’s a must do again on my list. I started my training early, and today I get to go back to a modified workout schedule. I injured my arm back in June 😔 I read you’re doing a marathon in November, is it the TCS New York City Marathon? How many marathons have you done??

        Like

  13. I’m so excited to be on the journey with you! What training plan are you using? I’m reusing the Team in Training plan I used last time, hoping this time to do much better- last time I spent the last 10 miles of the marathon in pain, and crying hysterically for no apparent reason. This time I want to be smiling when I cross that finish line! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes Bee!! So excited that you’re with me and happy to be following your journey as well!! I’m doing Hal Higdon Novice 1, although I just read a post of someone who is doing Novice 2 and it made me rethink–I annoy myself sometimes!! It’s going to be a constant battle of getting my mind right and just taking my long runs easy and resting when I need to–nothing about this process needs to be rushed, life is going by too fast already!!
      How’s everything going with you!?

      Liked by 1 person

  14. A great, big YES to number 1. I’m always excited about the running part of training, but never the nutritional aspect. It totally makes a difference. I’m trying to ask myself throughout the week, “how can I make myself a better runner besides running?”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Definitely Ralph!! I actually think nutrition is half or even more of the battle, makes such a huge difference! Lately also thinking I need to up my mental game–the long distances are prob more in my head than in my legs!

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s