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Going the Distance, Not Going for Speed


In case you missed it over on Mamas, I was abducted by aliens about a week ago. Those aliens checked my email, saw a Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon discount, grabbed my credit card secured my entry into the race in the fall. Along with my husband. They thought it would be a good way to celebrate our wedding anniversary in October. Aliens. They’re weird.

I honestly don’t know what came over me. I think it was a combination of Sunday night fatigue, a high from an earlier workout, a smidge of wanting a new goal and my kids doing great at the gym childcare, which has given me a lot more time to fit in workouts. Whatever the reason I did it, I did it, and now I have to work toward running a half marathon, the farthest distance I’ve ever run. I also kind of figure that after the Tough Mudder, which was at least 10 miles of mud and water and electric shocks, 13.1 miles without ice baths will be manageable. With some distance training, of course.

I haven’t been running a lot, so my focus right now is on slowly building up some distance. I’m fit, yes, but I’ve learned time and time again that doing too much running too soon always wrecks my ankles and knees. So when I say I’m slowly going to build up my distance over six months, I mean slowly. Turtle-like. Snail, even. My first “run” the other day consisted of a long walking warm-up, and then another half an hour of alternating running a minute with a two-minute walking recovery. Even though part of my brain was like, “Seriously! You don’t need to recover! Keep running!” the bigger, smarter part of my brain was like, “Don’t even think about it, bub.”

My plan, along with inching my running mileage up slowly, is also going to include long warm-ups, strength training and plenty of foam rolling and recovery. I have no time goals, only completion goals, with a side of not wanting to deal with an injury. Once I build my base, I’ll start to look at more of a specific half training plan. But for now, I’m just building that base. Because it’s all about that base. (Sorry. Had to.)

Have you ever done couch to half marathon? I wouldn’t say I’m starting at the couch, but I’m starting in the living room. —Erin

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