Mechanical

Pre-Training: Day 1

I started running in February, I think. At first, I could run two or three blocks before I was gasping for air. At my worst, I weighed almost 210 pounds. This morning, the scale said I weighed 184 pounds. 11 days ago, I ran 3 miles in 27 minutes. That is the longest (distance and time) I've run since junior high. That would have been over two decades ago.

In order to start the actual marathon training on my birthday, I have to be able to run for 30 minutes, 4 times a week, for two weeks. I have three weeks to accomplish this in. I knew I could run for thirty minutes so long as I got past the psychological barrier of seeing my apartment and not being able to run past it.

Well, duh. Last night, as I quite failed to drift off to sleep due to insomnia (excitement about training), I realized that if I ran away from my apartment for 15 minutes, I couldn't get back any sooner than fifteen minutes, so I wouldn't have the psychological barrier. At the fifteen minute mark, I started back. I tried very hard not to run too fast in order to conserve energy, but I wound up running back faster than than when I ran out so I got back too soon. About a block before my apartment, at the 26 minute mark, I turned left rather than go home. I ran for 32 minutes today. That's five minutes longer than my previous personal best. I was tired when I got home, but I didn't feel too bad. My heart rate was too high, but I'll monitor that.

My only concern is my left leg. It's a bit sore and is the only thing which might cause a problem. I will only be running twice more this week (I'm going to go ahead and count Saturday's 22 minute run in with this week) and will be sure to take it easy. All of my pre-training runs will be limited to 30 or 35 minutes. I have no intention of overdoing it. Having to give up due to injury will really piss me off.

26.2 miles, here I come.
To be fair, I was in the same boat about a year ago. Even running to catch the local train made me seriously out of breath and I was so embarrassed at how badly I was gasping for breath that I started biking again. I used to bike 25 miles a day (when I was 18). When I got back on my bike, I could only ride a couple of blocks. I forced myself, though, and got back into it quicker than I thought. The biking gave me enough basic physical fitness that I knew I could run if I wanted to.
Great job, hon. You have a wonderful goal and your striving for it is even more important than actually reaching it. Be proud of yourself. *hugs*
That's so awesome. it's motivating to hear that you're making such progress.
I may have missed it in one of your earlier posts, but you did start with a new pair of running shoes, right? To satisfy my curiosity, what kind do you have? I recently had to retire an older pair of shoes because of the hell it was inflicting upon my hip.

One thing to keep in mind for training, too: your shoes have a lifespan of 500 - 1000 miles. More than that and you ask for trouble.

Sorry to obsess about the darned shoes, but they make a huge difference. Good luck, and keep healthy! :)
I just bought a pair of Saucony TR 6. They definitely helped my run and I plan on retiring them after 500 miles. I've no plans on letting shoes get in the way.
Hey congratulations!
One thing to think about -- 9 min/mile is pretty fast (more than likely faster than your marathon pace). So if you start feeling like you're wearing out early, try experimenting with a slower pace. I'm sure you'll get that instruction in your book sooner or later as well.
Heh. Ovid was a fantastic poet who influenced many writers. Well worth reading.

And do you run? It would be fantastic if you were to give it a go. Having a friend in the race, even if we didn't stick together (which I suspect would be difficult for 26+ miles) would be great.
Congratulations that's fantastic progress!

My brother has run the London marathon twice (and yes, the poor sod had to train through the evil that is the British winter) so I thought I'd ask him for some advice for you (this is one of the huge benefits of being on the same time zone as him). He advised:

- Build up slowly
- He ran a half marathon about 3 months before the main event
- About 4 weeks before hand do a run of about 20-22 miles, then wind down before the marathon
- Decent shoes and socks - he said something about the fact that you can get these special two layered socks, the advantage is that the outside layer moves with your shoes, the inside layer moves with your feet, so you don't rub your feet raw.

He also recommended reading Runner's World magazine, because that provided him with a lot of useful information

http://www.runnersworld.com/newindex/0,,s6-0-0-0-0,00.html

Best of luck.