Marathon Training – Weeks 10-12

Six weeks left (and only 5 more long runs) until go time!

All I have to say is THANK GOODNESS! I’m quickly losing my love for running and each run takes a serious motivational speech to get me out the door. Yup, I give myself motivational speeches and bribes to get myself to run. The bribes mainly consist of food and mimosas and allowing myself to buy copious amounts of Spark but sometimes you just gotta do what you gotta do ;)

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I only have two more “scary” long runs before the big day – an 18-miler next weekend and then a 20-miler 2 weekends after that. I can do it…

Thankfully, Kyle has my back (I warned him when I first started training that I would want to quit every freakin’ day starting in September) and every time I say that I’m done, no marathon for me, he tells me too bad you’re going to run it. This typically results in a lot of whining and glaring, but he’s right, I’m going to run it whether I like it or not ;)

And then no more marathons for me EVER again. It’s not the running, it’s more of the time commitment that’s a killer. All of you that have run more than one marathon are my heroes.

I’ve noticed a few things over the past few weeks that I think come with the marathon training territory.

1. Everything hurts. Always. Not the “painful I need to see a doctor” kind of hurt, just the “my entire body is worn out and needs a rest” kinda hurt. I think it’s normal but I’m ready to take a break from running come October 13th!

2. I’m realllyyyy tired. I’m fairly certain that I could sleep for 12+ hours/per night at this point. Running 30+ miles/week really takes it out of you! I’ve been trying to let myself sleep more and fit in my running where it works best. On that note, I should probably get my iron checked again just to make sure that’s not a contributing factor to my sleepiness.

3. Hanger is real. I’ve been getting better at containing my hunger by eating larger meals and more protein, but when the hunger ninja strikes, it isn’t pretty. I always carry snacks with me (I’m think I may be reverting back to my toddler years, ha!) in case my stomach starts growling.

Okay, now for the last 3 weeks of running…

Week 10 called for 15 miles. It also fell on my Vegas weekend. I knew in advance that those 15 miles were not going to happen on a Saturday morning in Vegas so I moved them to Thursday afternoon. I was super nervous – 15 miles was going to be the most I had ever run at one time, but the weather turned out to be perfect (slight breeze, 70 and sunny) so I was excited to try it out. I ran along the lakefront to take advantage of the frequent drinking fountains and I managed to complete my run at my training pace. This run definitely left me feeling like I could easily (it’s all relative…) conquer the marathon!

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Week 11 was a completely different story. I had 16 miles on the agenda and it was hot and humid in Chicago that Saturday morning. The run sucked. There’s no other way to describe it. Thankfully, it didn’t just suck for me and our running leaders said multiple times to not let this run make us discouraged about our training. It shouldn’t be (fingers crossed!) that hot or humid come October in Chicago. Regardless, I finished the 16 miles, had some good conversations along the way and am more than happy that the marathon is in the fall ;)

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Week 12 definitely required some pep talkin’ for myself. It was only 12 miles (again, it’s all relative at this point!) so I decided to run it by myself. It didn’t happen Saturday morning or Sunday morning, so this morning (the Monday morning of Labor Day) I made myself crawl out of bed at 5am. That was painful… Okay, painful isn’t the right word but I just didn’t want to gooooo (whiny voice). Not surprising, once I was out getting my run on, the 12 miles felt great! Yes, it was really humid and my knees kind of hurt but it was really peaceful and I felt accomplished at the end. Anddddd… now I’m getting ready to go to brunch with my friend. It will involve mimosas (part of my personal bribe) and then I’m getting a massage as 12:30. #treatyoself

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Did you miss my previous marathon training recaps? Find them here!

Do you ever bribe yourself in order to get a workout in? Fellow marathon trainers, what tricks do you use to stay motivated through the last few weeks?


  1. The last few weeks were so tough for me (both marathons)…remember you are so close and then you are DONE in a matter of weeks! I would bribe myself with some terribly good food or retail therapy the day after my long runs…yes hanger is real – I ate SOOOO much all the time when training – HANG IN THERE!!!
    Sarah@creatingbettertomorrow recently posted…Marvelous MemoriesMy Profile

    • Good to know I’m not the only one!! I’m so impressed that you did 2 marathons… seriously. Hero status! Thanks for the pep talk :)

  2. I think I need to start bribing myself after workouts! hee hee!! I got myself to BodyPump today after a week vacation-NOT PRETTY…and now I am marathon training sounds tough so give yourself a HUGE high five for committing and sticking to it! I’d be peacing OUT after day one of ‘not perfect weather’ -that’s what you call a fair-weathered runner :) Enjoy brunch!

    • Haha – I want to peace out half of the time but then realize that would cause bigger issues come race day ;) I have been doing TONS of BP lately because it seems so much better than running, LOL. I just keep telling myself, only a few more weeks!

  3. Reading your marathon update posts are so reassuring and I always breathe a huge sigh of relief: “I am not alone.” Yes you are so right about the time commitment, exhaustion and hunger. I know how amazing we are both going to feel crossing the finish line but motivational speeches are certainly a must. And it’s funny: I was so not looking forward to Saturday’s 12 miles, yet it was my best run yet. Go figure! Keep going girly… you are sooo close!
    Amy @ The Little Honey Bee recently posted…Back at It: Last Week’s WorkoutsMy Profile

    • Girl, you are definitely not alone! You can pretty much guarantee I’m thinking the exact same thing as you when a negative thought crosses your mind ;) I’ve have been soooo tired and I’m ready to feel well-rested again once we start the post-20 taper.

  4. We have the same Garmin! I love the touch of pink on it. :) I did the same thing when I was training for my half marathon … I did a lot of bribing for those long run days, especially toward the end when the mileage was getting crazy. Don’t know how you marathoners do it! Food, mimosas, and massages sound like some good bribes to me. ;) Enjoy your brunch and massage!
    Ashley @ My Food N Fitness Diaries recently posted…Breakfast is My FavoriteMy Profile

    • I love it too! And it’s lasted for a few years now… I’ve had to do a few updates on it, but so far, so good :) And I don’t know how real marathoners do it either – I’m dying and I still have a few more weeks, yikes!

  5. I’m with you – so never doing this again! Although I do like the more structured training plan I’m on, the time commitment is killing me. I have been trying to run my 12 mile run for like three days. First day, I got called into a new work placement and was requested to go in, second day my son was yelling at me about dinosaurs and I just started running too late, third day (today), GI issues and another crying toddler. I’m going to try and finish my run (I ran 5K this morning) this afternoon but still – ugh! I do much better with my long runs when I am not pressured with time, that is for sure! Part of the reason why I think I will be fine for the marathon is that I know I have the time. I’m also running a half marathon with added mileage in a couple of weeks to also get another long run in – but then it is time to start those scary runs!

    Hang in there! I will hang in there with you!
    Rebecca@RunningFoodBaby recently posted…NYC Marathon Training: Week 7My Profile

    • Whew – I’m so glad I’m not the only one having issues with a 12-miler this weekend! Good luck to you – You’re going to rock it. Training is by far the hardest part of the marathon… at least I’m convinced of this ;)

  6. I definitey have to do some bribing as well! I bribe with food mostly but also clothes and shoes:) oops! I’m in the same boat as you in terms of the time commitment. I love running and I hope I always will but I think half marathons are going to be my jam going forward! This marathon I’m training for is a bucket list item. Who knows I may love it! Let’s hope for that!

    • Thinking of shoes just makes my feet hurt right now, LOL. I cannot wait to want to wear pretty shoes again :) But yes, I agree – half marathons are where it’s at!

  7. Sending positive thoughts your way! I totally bribe myself into working out :) nothing wrong with that!
    Christina recently posted…An Egg = ChangeMy Profile

  8. haha I love that you have to bribe yourself – it’s cuz you’re in the home stretch! I bribed myself with mimosas yesterday too haha but I only had to run 5.5 miles so I can only imagine the type of talk it takes to get yourself out the door with marathon training! Love the picture by the river :)
    Lauren @ ihadabiglunch recently posted…it’s a beautiful day for some country music!My Profile

  9. You’re Superwoman. Seriously.
    carly @ snack therapy recently posted…No Food Left BehindMy Profile

    • Does Superwoman hobble up stairs like a 90-year old man?! If so, you nailed it ;) LOL – Walking was painful today!

  10. Love it! So proud of you! And I have no advice for you….because I get all of my advice FROM you!! XO
    Sammy @ Peace, Love and Ice Cream! recently posted…Happy Labor Day & a Tabata workout!My Profile

  11. I understand the tired thing. I’m iron deficient and have to be careful when I train to hard it wipes it out of me. In general, it’s normal to feel more drained. Eventually your body adjusts if you do it over and over. Make sure you run one for me. Feeling a little down.
    MegaN @ SkiNny fitAlicious recently posted…Labor Day…You Should Always Bring Friends MuffinsMy Profile

  12. I think I could physically run a marathon but I just wouldn’t want to. And I’m not the type to do things I don’t wanna do. I know you can do this and then I totally don’t blame you for hanging up your marathon shoes :)
    Laura Dembowski recently posted…Fig and Cherry Baked OatmealMy Profile

  13. I trained for a half marathon and the time commitment was my biggest issue! If I LOVED running, that would be one thing, but marathon training really does have complete control over your life! Keep with it, though- you’ll feel like you’ve accomplished so much when you finish it!

  14. My favorite part is the fact that you were texting during your 12 miler… Way to leave that out ;)
    Allison recently posted…Weekend Recap & Meal Plan – AdvoCare 24 Day ChallengeMy Profile

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