Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Taper!

Seriously? Calm and Taper just don't work together!

Here it is, the post I’ve written oh so many times and experienced at this pint probably 21 times! Yes, you guessed it I am in the midst of taper madness! The craziness of the past couple weeks has not helped: combine the end of grad school, allergies to the extreme, a sick kid and now this crazy foot thing and I am going crazy! I am pretty sure this is my 20th experience with the lovely thing called taper madness. I honestly think I managed to make it through without on marathon #1 since my only goal was to finish and I had no doubt that would happen. And really, when the training was less than good you have no doubts about how bad it was!

  • Fall 2010 and my experience of nearly screaming at an entire auditorium of grad students thanks to tapering combined with travel and grad school!
  • Spring 2012 and all the wound up energy!
  • Fall 2012 and how to taper but yet I am still thinking I meet DSM diagnosis
  • Fall 2007 and not eating everything in sight!


Yes, I have written many times and it never gets easier. I actually think it gets harder as expectations of oneself and by others go up. This phase of taper madness began months ago with the brutal winter and lack of fast training runs. All the doubts and questions about “did I do enough” or “what about this run” and “should I have done this” all spin through your head. These are the days when I need to realize I have done what I could, nothing done now will help and potentially hurt my race! Oh my gosh, I have no control! NO!! I don’t do well without full control, yep motherhood is super easy for me..hahaha!

So how does a runner survive taper
  • Stay busy but don’t do too much: grad school works great!
  • Eat healthy but don’t eat everything in sight
  • Stay active but don’t do anything new
  • Sleep well
  • Think about race day but don’t overthink the day

Let the kid push you on the run! Why not?
Take a rest on the comfy chair some nice person left on the trails!
Understand this is all normal to feel depressed with built up energy, question your readiness and abilities. Just remember the training is done, you have done everything you can at this point. Take a deep breath and relax (if that is possible). My thing is to obsess on the weather and rethink my race outfit 100s of times. Right now looking perfect 40s/50s and cloudy! How do you survive taper? 

And since I'm sure everyone is wondering here is the foot update: It is getting weirder. It felt good yesterday morning so I decided to get outside and run/walk the 2 miles to gymnastics and it felt pretty good. Then my run group hosted a 5K last night and I supported runners on the course while my foot felt hollow. Yes, hollow. How do you even explain that? It is kind of the on the verge of a muscle spasm pain and numb. Okay, very strange. So no more running. as long as the rain stays away I'm getting on the bike while O is at preschool. I will run this marathon! It may not be perfect but I will do it.



16 comments:

  1. HATE taper week. But somehow always end up enjoying it by mid-week... You can sleep in and get more things done (not that I'd ever clean or anything instead... I mean more Target shopping)! Rest up though!
    emma @ amomrunsthistown.com

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    1. hahaha, yes Target! Cleaning would be too much during taper ;)

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  2. I love love love your sense of humor Jen!
    And this post along with the links to previous tapers is priceless!
    Thank you for this!
    I borrowed your picture on my fb page, In Mid Stride, but sited you ;)

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    1. Thanks, sometimes you just have to laugh to make it through life, right? :)

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  3. My tapers are not your "tradition" format. I generally cut a lot of volume, but rarely run easy. For example, during the week prior to a race I will probably do more speed intervals than during most other weeks. However, they are generally shorter. I'm still improving my neuromuscular fitness, but it's not enough volume to induce any fatigue.

    Helps with the "taper madness"

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    1. Great point, I typically do much of the same but right now with illness and ? injury I am stuck cutting both mileage and intensity :(

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  4. So weird about the foot! I find phantom injuries during taper- well, most often phantom. Hope it clears up and best of luck!!

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  5. I go stir crazy during the "easy week" before a half marathon (I've never done a full) so I can't even imagine a true marathon taper. I think at this point your foot is just messing with you. Get out and run that marathon, you can deal with weirdo foot later. =)

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    1. Thanks Sarah, I hope that is the case. My plan too!

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  6. I just started my first taper and I feel like the crazies have already started. I feel like I need to be doing more than what I am and am completely starving all the time. Gah!

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  7. I definitely understand the taper madness! But I also understand how vital it is in training. Good luck girl...it's gonna be worth it in a few short days! ;-)

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    1. Thanks Mindy, yes it is so important!

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  8. Great tips!
    Love the random chair on the course :-)

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    1. There are times I wish I could find a random chair to relax in on a long run! :)

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