Friday, August 17, 2007

Training for P.E.I. marathon through dog days of summer

Training for P.E.I. marathon through dog days of summer
Dehydration punishing lesson learned as training program enters high-intensity weeks
The Guardian
Editor’s Note: Cheryl Paynter of Charlottetown is busily training for the upcoming Prince Edward Island Marathon. She will be writing a regular column on her preparations leading up to the event Oct. 13-14. Following is her first column offering advice to other novice runners on how to train for the event.

A marathon? Mid-life crisis? How far is a marathon anyway? Don’t you have be an elite athlete to attempt this?
Not all marathoners are elite and fanatical runners.
For instance, I am not qualifying for the prestigious Boston marathon anytime soon and I consistently finish in the bottom third of road races I enter.
I am an average runner. I have a very busy professional life, a busy family and enjoy doing many other things besides running.
Despite the above, I truly love being in the company of other like-minded, positive, and active people. I cannot say no to the mental and physical challenge of the marathon and actually quite enjoy the training period leading up to race day. To me, running contributes to a positive mindset and lifestyle.
The upcoming Prince Edward Island Marathon will be my third full marathon, and the anniversary of my first marathon.
Like most runners, I am following an 18-week training program that gradually increases both in intensity and distance.
The last few weeks of training have been quite tough as I tried my best to keep on schedule through the dog days of summer.
Dehydration is probably the most important and most punishing lesson I have learned as of late.
Dehydration snuck up on me in my last long run and it felt like someone had drained every single ounce of energy from my body in a matter of seconds.
Shear pig-headedness and great running partners got me through to the end, but it took me the remainder of the day to recuperate and rehydrate.
Lesson learned. I will never let that happen again. I will carry water and Gatorade, plant water along the route in advance and take more in much earlier in the run.
I have also gone inside to run in the pool one day per week for the last couple of weeks to escape the heat.
Yes, in the pool. It is quite refreshing, I find that I get the same quality workout and it gives my joints a rest from the pounding on the roads.
It is also great for a laugh with my running group. By myself I would never stick with a workout like this, but with a group and proper instruction, pool running is something I very much now look forward to.
I belong to, and highly recommend, running with a group. It is a tremendous support network for those track and hill workouts and keeps me accountable to someone for my training.
My instructor, Stanley Chaisson, has a wealth of knowledge and experience and is a great motivator on nights, well, where I rather be somewhere, anywhere else.
The training program for the marathon is approaching its high intensity weeks.
I am trying to focus on getting lots of sleep and proper nutrition to prepare.
Over the course of the next 8-9 weeks, I will attempt to give you a glimpse of how the training program unravels and hope to see you all on Prince Edward Island Marathon weekend, Oct. 13-14. There is an event for everyone including dedicated walking events, a 10-km run, a
half and full marathon run and the popular corporate relay marathon.
It is not too late to start training to take part!

No comments: