Friday, August 23, 2013

Hormones (or lack thereof) men consider yourselves warned ;)

“Some changes look negative on the surface but you will soon realize that space is being created in your life for something new to emerge.” 
Eckhart Tolle

It's already been three weeks since I last blogged. Overall, marathon training continues to go relatively well. 

A nice mountain run with Uber H, my bro et my SSIL.

It was tough on some of the climbs, but we flew on the downhills!

Today was our longest run in this training cycle...almost 25km, and althought it went okay, I felt tired through most of it. However, our pace managed to stay the same and we chatted almost constantly. Although sometimes, I just listened :)

Here's the little fountain I mentioned  where we go rinse our hands and face. That picture is from two weeks ago...since then, I've lowered my fuel belt to the hips (not as stable) because it was chafing at my waist.

Lately, I have some good runs, but also some difficult runs. Lots of ups and downs, like my energy level these days. I was hesitant about addressing the issue of menopause this week...but, coincidentally, the Mother Runners decided to talk about it a few days ago. However, it was talked about with humour and not very seriously. Which is totally fine, but not what I was looking for. I'm in my mid-fifties and had not been very symptomatic so far. I was feeling lucky, "No not me, I don't really have any bothersome symptoms". Not anymore! It seems that things have changed over the last month and the hardest part is the general feeling of fatigue that overtakes me sometimes. I'm finding it harder to get out there for my weekday runs...and the long runs are often harder to get through than just a few months ago. Also, on long run days, I know I won't get much else done, because I need the whole rest of the day to recover. This partly explains my lack of motivation to sit and write a blogpost. Thank goodness the fatigue is not constant, it tends to come and go over the day, but I'm not enjoying the drain and mild nausea that sometimes accompanies the fatigue. So...what's your secret ladies? How do you deal with the fatigue, the hot flashes, the headaches, and training?

Myself, I've been very diligent about getting to bed between 9:30 and 10pm. I try to eat enough protein and, well, enough healthy food! I've added a day off to my work schedule every second week. I still get out there and complete my workouts. Even if I'm tired, I still get them done. It's just rarer that the workouts feel easy. Oh and in case you're wondering...I just had my annual check up and all is good - no anemia, and thyroid, cholesterol, blood pressure are all good. Only difference from previous months - this is definitely TMI for the men and some women, but hey let's be real...the biggest difference is a period that never ends (it's been on and off since July 23rd)...this has never happened before. 

What's happening though is that this is affecting me mentally, not just physically. I'm worrying that the long runs will be too difficult and that now may not be a great time to run a marathon. That's on the one side, on the other side, I'm just trying not to think...getting out there and doing what I have to do and hoping that it all works itself out.

Like many of you, I write this blog for myself mostly, to be able to read back and see what went well and what didn't and how it turned out. I felt this was important to remember when I looked back on this marathon training cycle. Thanks for any input you may have!


Friday, August 2, 2013

Every day is a new dawn!

"With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts."
Eleanor Roosevelt

Last Friday, my Super SIL and I had 22km on the program. We slept in (NOT) and then headed out at 06:30. The weather was perfect and although I felt a little tired, I was confident that it would be another nice long run spent chatting away with my SSIL. However, it wasn't one of those runs, I started not feeling great by around 8K and the feeling came and went. By the last few kilometers, I suggested that we shorten the time between our walk breaks (we usually do 14/1 - we switched to 9/1). It was a difficult run, by the end I wasn't chatting much at all and I was happy to be done with it. 

Here we are post-22K...I'm smiling, but that's because I was done!

Last week was another vacation week. I ran by the ocean, I ran in the rain and I hiked some more. Despite a chilly start, we had some nice weather and were able to enjoy the Bic National Park trails. Our cottage was by the ocean, we were staying with friends, and it was just a really nice break. 

Love being in the woods and hiking!

Today was another long run. This week, we had the shortest of 24km or 2h25m on the program. Once again, we were out there at 06:30. I hadn't slept too badly, but not great either...I think I was a little worried about how it would  go if I didn't sleep well, so of course I didn't sleep great. Anyways, off we went and I was feeling really good. We got caught in some rain, but it didn't last, and it was actually refreshing. We chatted non-stop and the kilometers just flew by. You'd think I was a different person from last week. I felt strong and extremely comfortable through the whole 2h25m...for a total of 21.1km. Actually, we ran an extra 50 seconds in order to reach .1 and make it a complete half-marathon. You know you're a runner when... ;)

Here we are enjoying a post-run breakfast!

Overall, training continues to go well as we reach the 1/4 point. Today was the beginning of week six of our program and once again, I'm amazed at how well my body is holding up (touch wood)!