Tuesday, November 1, 2011

It's taper time, ya'll!!1!?!1tdjkahakhyyyzzk

Last Friday I completed my last long training run for the upcoming Philadelphia Marathon. I took the morning off of work and pounded pavement for 22 miles. And now that I'm done with the longest, most intense training period of my life, I must say I have mixed emotions.

Every year I would look forward to the last day of school like a rabid maniac. I would dream about it. As the day grew closer my attention span would become smaller and smaller until all I could think about was bursting out of the classroom doors, tearing my school uniform off my body as I ran down the street to spend the next three months at the local swim club and barefoot nights on steamy streets and vacations down the shore. But when the day finally did arrive, I'd always get a little misty-eyed. Or how I had to pull over on to the side of the road on my way home from college graduation because I was crying so hard I thought I was going to pass out. Or how my first apartment was the size of most homes' kitchen pantries, had a horrible mouse problem, and no storage and when I moved out I sat on the stairs crying for half an hour because I know the rattling windows kept me up all night but I'll miss them so much. So much, so much. Mind you, I was moving one floor down. One floor. I now invite you to imagine the scene everyone encountered the day I moved from Philadelphia to Boston. It wasn't pretty, ya'll. I imagine the claw marks are still on the front porch. I'm still not ready to talk about it. B re-lives it every night in his nightmares. I have a problem with endings. Like, the ending part of them.

That's kind of how I feel right now. On a slightly smaller scale. I just busted my ass for almost four months. Sweating and spitting and cursing and swearing off alcohol forever. I'd spend my long runs fantasizing about the Saturday morning I could wake up and not have 20-miles to check off my To Do list. But then after my run I'd walk around the rest of the day like the queen of the fucking universe. No I will not do those dishes, I JUST RAN 22 MILES, ASSHOLE. SOMEBODY GET ME A BEER. Plus, I was ecstatic. I felt awesome. I felt accomplished. I was fucking PUMPED. I wanted to celebrate! And now that I don't have any long runs left to do, I'm a little upset about it.

The next big ticket item on my To Do list is the marathon itself on November 20. Running the marathon is a lot like the four-months of training it takes to get there, all condensed into a single morning. Training usually goes something like this for me throughout the months: positivity -> elation -> fun -> blood, sweat, tears -> Mein Kampf -> more fun -> more pain -> why the fuck do I do this to myself -> surprise! -> elation -> despair -> elation -> self-loathing -> despair again -> panic -> kind of fun -> loneliness -> hope -> oh god, oh god, oh god it's ending -> fun -> extreme elation like you would not motherfricking believe. Now cram all of that into a few hours and you basically understand what it is to marathon.

Being as I trained harder than ever before for this marathon, I assume the taper period will be particularly bothersome. Holy endorphins withdrawal, ya'll! Imagine getting a big ol' jolt of happy place endorphins injected into your arm four times a week for four months, and then having that slowly taken away. Better yet, imagine being able to eat and drink whatever you wanted, whenever you wanted and STILL lose weight. Would I like a donut with my coffee? I'll take six.

All that's over now. In about a week I'll feel fat, lifeless, and have the attention span of a rodent. And not those smart laboratory rats that find their way through mazes either. More like the hamster who ate all it's little hamster pellets, couldn't figure out how to get out of the plastic tube, and suffocated to death. So yeah.

Philly or bust, baby! Oh sweet baby jesus I hope I don't blow this.

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