musings on running, life, and everything in between

Another exciting Friday night in the kingdom of nerd

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This is me staring at some research I’m supposed to be presenting on Sunday. The third of four presentations I’m involved with for a major conference that’s in town. It’s been a grueling week, and my coffee intake has assumed epic proportions. I calculate that I’m consuming 60+ oz of coffee a day most days this week. The withdrawal will probably be ugly.

I actually had a presentation on campus the other day as well, and i was so jacked up on coffee that I was rambling to two cornered freshmen afterwards. I literally couldn’t stop talking, and it was a ridiculous strung-out, semi-crazed conversation I was basically having with myself. I’m sorry, kids.


For the life of me, I can’t get this graphic to show right, so here’s a link to the original source. Anyhow, it’s the taper. It’s actually been the taper for over a week. Normally I’m going crazy with the taper. I want to run more. But, this week has been so awful that I actually cut a mile off the speed workout Tuesday, and ditched the 4 miles today. To ask me to run less is hard enough, but for me to voluntarily cut back even more is insanity. I’ve not had enough sleep, energy, or time to do the full workouts though. So any irritability, craziness, fitful sleep has been more a product of things this week rather than taper madness.

My kids have been super tuned-in to my stress level as there have been constant demands for “cuddling” 24/7. Kids coming in the early morning hours, late at night, all while I’m serenaded by shrieks of “cuddle!!!” It’s awesome. Really. Demands for cuddles while whining in one’s highest, nerve-grating voice, makes me want to melt into a pile of warm gooeyness. The work-life juggle has been hard, though. I missed out on some networking opportunities and face-time with other nerds–i mean colleagues/academics–to attend my kids’ preschool art/music show. Still, they were pretty cute. They clean up ok. 🙂

Ok, so we are 7 days out from the marathon. 7. days. That is within throwing distance of an accurate weather report. And I just made the mistake of checking the 10 day forecast.


I can and will run in rain. But almost 4 hours of running in rain while shooting for an ambitious time goal makes me want to cry, vomit, or scream. Either way, that forecast had better clear up. To be honest, even the 3 day forecasts lately have been spotty, so maybe I can just pray to the running gods.

Jen has, however, been freaking out. She’s only run one marathon so maybe that’s it, whereas I am so much more experienced and advanced as a runner (haha) that I’m not worried. But maybe it’s also because I’m busy that I haven’t allowed myself to think that far ahead. I DO need to start getting my head in the race, though. I have a plan. To tie myself to Jen and have her pull me along.

No, actually, I do have a real plan. I’m (we) using and using it to print pace bands for a conservative start and even effort. I’ve read some reviews online, so I know that people are a bit surprised by the few hills that pop up. I think it’s that when you’re used to seeing so much complete flatness, any hill is an unwelcome surprise and feels very difficult. One friend (thanks Mary!) also suggested using Google Maps’ satellite imagery to do a fly through of the marathon route. I feel like I have a decent handle of what to expect scenery-wise (having gone to school there), but I know U of IL has changed alot since I’ve graduated so it probably wouldn’t hurt. While the idea of using mantras in the mirror makes me want to roll my eyes, I’m wondering about at least getting a couple in practice under my belt for use during the race.

I also need to start working on my sleep (not until after Sunday) and hydration this week. I’ve seen some stuff about also eating mostly simple carbs the week before, but that seems extreme to me. However, I’ve also been struggling with a more sensitive stomach lately so maybe it’s not the worst idea in the world. Anyhow, work and my bed still await, so have a great long run Saturday (just 8 for me, assuming I can squeeze it in)!

Author: runNerdier

Marathoner. Academic. Mom of 2 ankle-biters.

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