Friday, April 24, 2009

Half marathon taper

Do you taper for a half marathon? I had decided on 28 miles this week, then 10 miles next week before the race on Sunday. Nothing scientific about it, this was based on googling and previous taper experiences.

I ran 6 miles on Monday. On Tuesday, I did 4 miles and 1/2 hour on the stationary bike (too lazy to drive to the gym for spinning class). On Wednesday morning, I woke up in the wee hours and went through the rituals of brushing, dressing, stretching, gulping down mouthfuls of water and gatorade; as I was coating my toes in vaseline before donning the socks, the left foot cried out a little. There was a sore area right behind the toes, one of the trouble spots from the tendonitis injury. My first reaction was, Damn! Why couldn't I have felt the pain while I was still in bed, so I could have gone right back to sleep? I considered running with the pain. After all, it wasn't severe, and I could only feel it when I touched it. But I have had this exact pain before and I know it only gets worse with running. So, I abandoned the run.

As the day progressed, I could still feel the pain. It was annoying, but at least it happened 10 days before the race. I iced and stretched. This morning, 2 days later, I ran 5 miles, pain-free. Was it just a phantom taper-related pain? Or the faster-than-normal long run on Saturday? Or the bike workout? I am always apprehensive about working out on the reclining bike (I prefer spinning class), because, even with the adjustments, my legs and feet seem to be stretched out way too much (I probably need a smaller bike?). Anyhoo, I hope the pain is gone for good. If tomorrow's run goes well, my weekly mileage will be in the low 20's. Oh, well! Hopefully, I will have a pair of fresh race-ready legs.

Another warm & wonderful weekend! Like everyone else, I am looking forward to basking in the sun. Starting with this evening. Inspired by The Happy Runner, I am going trash-picking. I don't have to go far. Parts of my regular running route are strewn with paper, empty beer cans, coffee cups, cigarette butts, even broken glass pieces. Why do people do that?

Check out this cool giveaway on Runner's Rambles: Exercise cards. I think it's a neat idea for a thorough cross training.

Enjoy your weekend!

17 comments:

trialsoftraining said...

My week before the last half and this one (next weekend) is usually about 12-15 miles Not including the race. Last time I did two 3-4 mile runs and one 5 mile run - took off the day before and did fine!! :)

hope the foot stuff clears up aaand that you enjoy the weekend!!

Amy said...

Good for you, keeping your neighborhood beautiful. Perfect for Earth Day.

And I hope that annoying pain goes away for good.

Mica said...

I tapered for my half. I did a long run two weeks before and dropped down to eight for the weekend before.

Glad you're back to being pain-free!

Pearl said...

i'm glad you're feeling better!

and how sweet that you're going trash-picking.. how considerate and kind of you :)

joyRuN said...

Glad you were able to run pain free :)

It was amazing how my legs hurt in new ways whenever I taper. You should've seen the mess I was diagnosing myself when tapering for my first marathon - pathetic!

I definitely would like to meet up. I'm not sure what time we're driving up on Saturday.

If you e-mail me, I can give you more deets - joyrun609[at]gmail[dot]com.

Melanie said...

i'm tapering now, and my left calf is messing with me. like you, not sure if it's a real something, or an in my marathon-crazy-madness-mind something. glad you ran pain free though, hoping i'll do the same tomorrow after resting today.

J said...

I am sure your taper will be good. Just see how your legs feel and go from there!

Jess said...

I never understood the littering thing either...I mean, how hard is it to seriously find a trash can anymore?!

Hope the pain is gone for good!

Roisin said...

Littering is lame, truly, especially when there are so many rubbish bins around anyway! Worst.

I taper for my half marathons because in the end, you are still racing. Your legs need to be fresh and ready to work, unless you're just going out for a 13 mile long run (which still sounds hard to me!)

lindsay said...

hope the pain is gone! i taper for a half if i have been training specifically for it. sometimes in marathon training i run one as my long run so i don't taper for that (and i don't run as fast in the race obviously). so i guess yeah, i would taper if i was going to race :)

Cindy said...

i did a taper before mine too. you know, i hadn't even heard of phantom taper pain before this week- i was complaining about something to my friend and she said that's what it was. weird!

Tammy said...

Good for you, picking up trash.

I don't usually taper before a Half, either. But, I'm not running extremely high mileage either. I also generally run 12-15 miles the week of a Half, not including the race...

Heather said...

I think it's a good idea to take it a little easier the week before the half - especially if your foot/toe has been giving you trouble.

I need to pick up trash around my running routes too.

aron said...

thanks for the link :)

The Happy Runner said...

I don't know why people are such trashers. It's awful. I'm constantly driving behind people and seeing them flick their cigarette butts out the window. GROSS!!

So glad you're into the trash picking, too. If we all did it a little, it would be gone. Maybe? Wishful thinking?

(And thanks for the link!)

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