The Mental Marathon Plan

Alright as I get closer to running this marathon, I am starting to prepare even more. First let me say, I am terrified. I have had some really disappointing long runs and I feel like I am not ready for this. Second, I am so over this training… I’m so ready to not have to plan my schedule and life around long runs and hoping that it doesn’t snow just yet! I can’t wait for this to be over.

This Tuesday will be my last really long run before race day and I am looking forward to getting it out of the way and desperately hoping that I feel awesome and finish feeling confident that I will be able to do this 26.2 miles in a few weeks. As I prepare for this long run, I have been preparing myself for race day. This is my last chance to prepare and practice my strategy before the big day. I have been researching a lot of mental strategies and motivations for finishing a marathon. I have also been researching getting through the wall and overcoming common race day obstacles (especially bathroom issues).

I want to me as prepared mentally as possible so that it is one things less I have to think about come race day. So here is what I have planned and am going to try on Tuesday. As a Birth Doula I am planning this out like a woman in labor. After all labor is a marathon (I need to write a whole post on that)

First I plan to break the race up into 5 mile segments. For me 5 miles is an easy segment and I know I can run 5 miles pretty smoothly. Each segment I plan to focus on something different to help me get through it and prepare myself for the next one to come. I am planning to write these focuses on my arm in case my mind goes blank and I can’t remember while I am running. So here they are:

Miles 1-5 (Pre-labor) Focus on breathing, relaxing, and warming up. Many people push themselves at the start of races and I do not want to burn out so I plan to focus on my own pace and not get wrapped into other people’s paces.

Miles 5-10 (Realizing you are in labor) I will be focusing on pace and form. Form is really important for me and I know during these few miles if my form is not good I will be hurting the rest of the race.

Miles 10-15 (Start of Active Labor) I will be focusing on my body and checking each piece from my toes to the top of my head. Thinking through what hurts, if anything needs a stretch, and how things feel. I will also focus on maintaining nutrition and hydration.

I know I can get through these miles pretty smoothly so up to mile 15 is all focused on preparing for the challenging miles ahead and giving myself the best possible circumstances.

Miles 15-20 (Water breaking/Epidural thoughts)  will be focused on enjoying the race. I plan to look around, read every sign, give as many high fives as possible and simple take it all in. I know after this point I won’t be able to focus on taking it all in and I don’t want to miss it. So this will be a good distraction as I lead to that place.

Miles 20-25 (Transition) will be all about distracting myself mentally. I plan to use each mile to pray for something different (writing them on my arm ahead of time) and really think about that person or situation. I plan to dig deep and use my why and mantras to push through these last few miles (more on that in a post in a few days).

Mile 25- finish (Pushing and Baby!) Will be all about taking it all in and enjoying the accomplishment that I am achieving. I don’t want to miss a second of the last mile. Even if I have to walk this whole mile I am taking in every second of it!

I am hoping with these goals and focuses I will be successful in completing this marathon and feeling accomplished at the end. I plan to try them out on Tuesday in my last long run and really get a feel for what needs to change and what is working.

Have you run a full marathon? What was your mental plan?

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Birthday Mud Run

My birthday this year finally fell on a Sunday! Which is race day!!! So of course I decided I had to do a race on my birthday. I searched around and finally found the mud factor mud run in Sacramento! A mud run, how can I say no!?

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So I registered and started thinking about what I would wear! Of course I had to represent some of my teams and had to show people that it was my birthday. So I put a green band on my arm to keep my key and my garmin safe and represent slytherin! I also wore my Ragnar ambassador headband. I usually don’t wear orange, but for a mud run it was the perfect splash of color. I also wore a sash that said “it’s my birthday” It was fun having people say happy birthday the whole time!

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sadly my friend Sam wasn’t able to go and we looked for someone to take her spot. Unfortunately we couldn’t find anyone and I was worried I would have to run by myself 😥 thankfully one of the girls from one of my running groups signed up and agreed to let me run with her.

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I was worried about the obstacles and worried I wouldn’t make it over the walls. I figured I would just take them one at a time, attempt everything, and try my best.

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I was able to conquer every obstacle. Even the big wall I was most worried about. It felt so good to accomplish it.

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The race ended with a huge slide and a mud crawl. We got covered in mud and had great after pictures.

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After we finished we went over the the creek we had waded through to rinse off. It was perfect and way better than waiting for showers. It was like a giant pool party!! I always wanted a pool party for my birthday!

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Before the race I had looked around on pinterest and asked people tips about mud runs. Here are the biggest tips people gave. Some I followed some I didn’t
-wear pants or socks to cover shins and knees (great idea for knees when you crawl through gravel)
– wear gloves (didn’t do this… maybe for a more intense one)
– tape your shoes on (I just tried my shoes really tight… I don’t mind barefoot if needed)
– put your hair up (duh! )
– put your phone in a bag ( I didn’t want to risk anything so I didn’t bring my phone)
– bring a wet towel/wet wipes for after (definitely needed! I put a wet towel in a baggie, it was perfect. I wish I had brought 2)
– bring sheets or something to change in (I do this for Ragnar relays! I have a strapless dress I use for changing its perfect!)
– bring bags for your wet/ muddy clothes (yes!! And for your shoes. I used three grocery bags)
-bring a squirt top water bottle for hard to reach areas ( didn’t use it because we were able to clean off pretty well.)
-roll in the mud and don’t be afraid of getting covered! (Yes! It was great to be covered)
That is all I can think of for now.
It was a great race! We had so much fun and I look forward to my next one!

Donut Dash!!

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Yes donut! My roommate Sam is obsessed with donuts. I love donuts too. Naturally when I was looking up races and saw one called donut dash I decided we had to run it.
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So we signed up and look forward to the race. 2 miles to Marie’s donuts in Sacramento, eat 6 donut holes, and run 2 miles back. Seriously who doesn’t want to do that race. To top it all of it is benefiting children at UC Davis Children’s Hospital.
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It was such a fun run even though it was raining and I had gotten off work at 3am and didn’t sleep. I decided it was perfect Ragnar training!

San Francisco weekend

Ok well it was a weekend for me.

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My sister and her friend Victoria decided to fly up to San Francisco for a few days to hangout. Victoria had never been to San Francisco so they planned to see it all. As I don’t live that far from SF I decided to drive down and spend a few days with them.

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The Sunday we walked around a lot of tourists spots.

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We took the BART to the city and walked from there.
The wharf and ferry building.

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We walked to coit tower. And around the streets and houses. It was a beautiful day.

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Monday we took BART to the city and decided to start in the mission district. Sera really wanted sightglass coffee and a specific bakery so those were our goals.

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We walked all over mission district to a lot of coffee shops and even found a tea shop.

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We also walked around the maritime museum and area.

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Tuesday, I started the day with a run. I planned to run 6 miles but did not really know the area. I ended up running 9 beautiful miles.

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I ran around bay farm island and it was beautiful.

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After breakfast we drove into the city to the golden gate bridge.

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It was a beautiful day. I have never seen it so clear in san Francisco. We walked the bridge and then headed in to Sausalito for lunch.

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After lunch we drove golden gate park to find the windmill. I had never been to the windmill before. It was beautiful.

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We then drove back to the city to go to the palace of fine arts.

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Then we drove down Lombard street.

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Wednesday we spent walking around alameda and just hanging out.

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The whole trip was great. I enjoyed getting to see my sister and hangout in San Fran for the weekend.

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It was exhausting but so worth the adventure.

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I even got some hammock time!