Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Twelve Marathons in Twelve Months: Logistics

By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.--Benjamin Franklin

For everyone that has ever run a marathon, we all know how much goes into it. The training for a marathon alone is a pretty serious undertaking. Most marathon training programs are at least 16 weeks long. Most cities across the United States has a marathon in town or at the very least, within an hour's drive. That said, the majority of people that I know that have completed a marathon have traveled a tad outside of local to get there. In general, the week before a marathon, one's eating habits will change. The runner will begin to focus on hydration and caloric intake. The marathoner with an upcoming race will actually live like a professional athlete.

Now ladies and gentleman, for your reading pleasure, extrapolate that marathon out over 12 months. This is not for me to pat myself or anyone else for that matter, on the back. I am in the early stages of this year with 2 marathons completed and I learn more and more everyday. Some things you can read about. You can try to expand or condense based on one marathon. You can also go with old reliable, trial and error. Whatever method you use, it's a lot of moving parts that need to mesh in order to complete the ultimate goal.

At the end of 2016 I will have run a marathon in 9 states and 2 countries. That is significant travel. I have to figure out where will I drive. Where will I fly? Do I need to stay at a hotel? How early will I need to wake up in order to make a marathon driving. For the race where I need to get my number the night prior, it presents a different set of issues. I also have a family so when I think of travel, I try to figure out how many races will my family not be present. Then, my favorite part of the equation, how much will all this cost. Please send donations to: "I don't want to go broke dot com"

We would all like to eat like champion athletes but the reality of it all is that most of us do not. Accept for around race time or while in training, many of us will not do a great job with diet. Maybe I'm wrong about most of us. I don't really eat red meat at anytime throughout the year. I stay away from candy accept when I go to a movie. Fast food is a lazy luxury that I truly try to avoid. That said, while I am essentially, perpetually, in season, I don't succumb to the lazy luxuries and I've torpedoed red meat all together. Another challenge is to insure that you always have food. I am very particular about what I eat generally and specifically the night before and morning of the race, I eat the same things all the time. It is a challenge to make sure that I have those things available.

This may be the most important part of my journey. I have marathons 8 days apart. 14 days apart. 34 days apart. 50 days apart. I have hilly marathons, I have flat marathons, I have big city marathons and I have a trail marathon. All of these things require different recovery. For the single digit days in between it's basically survival mode. I haven't gotten there yet but I plane to run once or twice in between and just try to eat and rest. It isn't a perfect science but you must understand how your body recovers. How many days off do you need and how long can you run without being tired for the actual race.

Overall, there are things to be done in order to get me to 12 marathons by December 4, 2016. Anticipation and repetition are paramount in my quest for 12 medals. The goal is to be as loose as possible for every race and let my body do what I've trained it to do.

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