26.2 miles in less than 16 days …

It all comes down to the next 2.5 weeks.  Sixteen days from this moment right now, I will have {God-willing} completed my first full marathon and will either be, hopefully, still celebrating with friends and family or, quite possibly, passed out on the couch attempting to regain the use of my legs!  Either way, my first marathon experience will be in the books. Even the best laid plans usually come undone at some point.  This training plan was no exception.  Throwing it all the way back to July 6 when I posted our first #marathontraining picture on Instagram … this round of training has been met with some bizarre set backs for all of us – various injuries, not necessarily running related, and illnesses to start, on top of the more common work/travel conflicts and family commitments.We purposely starting our plan a few weeks early, in mid-July, to allow for a slow increase in mileage. July and August had our longest runs ranging from 6 – 15 miles, including all double-digit long runs in August.  In September, we knocked out 18 and I felt so strong at the finish of that run.  A few weeks later we did 21 – I definitely struggled during the final 4-5 miles, but finished nonetheless battling higher temps and some evil humidity.  {Crazy Runner Girl halos compliments of said humidity!}Personally, one of the greatest ironies of this training period has been the past two weeks.  Every year, our school’s fall break falls 2-3 weeks before the Monumental Marathon/Half Marathon.  Every year I struggle to maintain consistency in my training plan during the 1-2 weeks we’re out of town. ^^^Indy Women’s 5K with my daughters, mom and sister-in-law for the third straight year! ? Race recap coming soon! ^^^

This year, we ended up staying home during break … but I twisted my knee three weeks ago {not during a run!} and have been trying to Ice, Rest, Repeat since then.  My longest “run” has been 5 miles since aggravating it during a race a week later, and that run included quite a bit of walking.^^^Post-race Ft Ben Half Marathon + 8 miles on the new trail between our houses = 21 miles for the day. And aggravated my ridiculous knee injury ? Ft Ben Race Recap coming soon! ^^^

But injuries have a funny way of making you stop and listen to your body.  REEAALLY Listen 🙂 I know I can’t run and probably shouldn’t push it by walking too far, too fast.  But of course that just makes me want to run more.  Faster.  Further.  More Frequently.But instead, I have to focus on what I can do. Strength training and yoga.  When I started marathon training 3 months ago, I told myself I would make time to squeeze in a yoga class or video at least one a week to keep my muscles loose and my hips happier 🙂 I made it about 6 weeks before my kids’ fall sports schedule got cRaZy and consumed our lives.  And yoga class got tossed aside like old smelly running shoes.  Last night I made it to my first yoga class in several weeks and am feeling it all over today!The next 15 days will be even harder than I would have imagined.  Not because of the work I still need to put in, but because I am limited in what I can and can’t do right now.

Choosing to ? RISE UP and CHOOSE JOY ?