Here’s a quick catch up on my running and really great photo. The basic structure of marathon race training is a 6-8 week period of base building, where you run a slowly increasing number of miles at a moderate pace to build up cardio capacity and muscle strength, followed by 6-8 week period of your most intense training with long runs and speed training, followed by a 2-3 week taper leading up to race day. The idea behind the taper is to let everything rest and recover, so that you reach the starting line feeling fresh and rested. As a general rule, you run 80%, 60% and 40% of your peak running mileage during the taper.
Interestingly, the taper period isn’t particularly fun. In fact, it’s pretty awful. If you are used to training at a high volume, cutting back makes you feel slow and lethargic — even fat. Which is where the term taper madness comes from. My race is December 2, so at this point I have done two weeks of tapering, and I can’t wait to race a week from tomorrow.
To keep my spirits high, here is a picture of a running baby tapir.