Last year, I completed four half marathons and one full. That brings my total to six half marathons and one full. Amongst the things I noticed in various races:
I managed my fluid and food intake in races extremely well for the most part: During MCM, I NEVER had to go to the bathroom. I skipped water stations if it was too much, and was constantly in tune with my body.
No injuries due to conditioning or overuse. Yes all of my injuries were on impact during races, so it’s clear what I need to work on there. But I stuck to my training plan, pushed myself to my limit but no further, and limited garbage miles, miles that did not increase endurance or speed.
I listened to my body when I DID incur injury. Did I quit? No. Did I think about quitting. Oh yes. Did I stop and listen? Yes. I know my body, but I’m still learning with this sport. I used aid stations when I needed and felt things out getting back on the pavement. And if I had to do it again, I wouldn’t change a thing.
My hill training wasn’t enough, and neither was weighttraining. Lord I need to improve on this, even though in Philly (not so much on the road in DC) it’s a royal pain in the arse. I’m working on this by attending body development classes on Sundays in addition to spinning, and incurring more speedwork. Sundays after my long run make the most sense.
Stay to the right of the damn lane and awareness, awareness, awareness!!! Accidents in Virginia Beach and MCM in DC nearly derailed my races, although the latter should have never happened, and was through zero fault of my own. But it pays to pay attention to the shadows when in sunlight, and if someone gets too close…
There’s more lessons learnt off the pavement but with respect to training and racing itself, these are the things I need to pay attention to. And I’m working on it as I plow through offseason and prepare for my first race of the year.