That miserable long run on Friday has me wondering if I might need to re-think the way I’m training. I’m wondering if I should up my weekly mileage a bit but cut back to one long run (as in “over 15 miles”) per month instead of the two I am doing now. The reason I am thinking this is that I just don’t think my fitness level is at a point where I can do multiple long runs per month. It feels like I need a week to recover but then it’s time for another one. Now that I am up into serious mileage (18+) for my long runs, I really feel like I don’t have enough time to let my body heal between runs.
Now hear me out on this and tell me if this makes sense. I am not an elite runner. In fact, I am not really an “in shape” runner yet. I am still running about 20 pounds heavier than the average runner. On medium distance runs (6-12 miles) this is not much of a burden. Yes, it slows me down, but it doesn’t “hurt”. However, the longer my runs go, the more I can feel the extra weight and right about mile 14 now on both of my long runs I have pretty much broken down completely. One, I was able to finish. The other, not so much… So I’m thinking that if I cut back the number of long runs, it will be easier on my body. Also, to compensate, if I increase my average mileage a bit (5-10 miles per week), I’m wondering if that might help my overall fitness level, help me lose weight and make me stronger? Or will the added daily pounding weaken me…?
I guess I’m just worried about what my body is telling me. I just get the feeling that unless I can drop some serious weight and do it quickly, running these long distances every two weeks may be too much for me and I’m going to hurt myself and not be able to continue. And in the end, the most important thing for me is being healthy so I can continue to run and lose weight. I would hate to end up trying so hard to run the marathon that I end up not being able to run at all.