“Fall” Running and Taper Time


Trail running views

Trail running views


Having left the world of riding (horses, not bikes) to become a running addict, I thought my days of crash landing on hard ground were over. Apparently not. Today I headed to the trails, welcoming a break from pavement and enjoying a perfect fall day in the woods. After 12k of carefully stepping over roots, and only a km away from my car, I managed to catch a small root with my toe. The root may have been small but it was enough to send me crashing to the ground. As I lay for a moment recovering, the irony of P!nk singing through my earbuds, “You gotta get up and try and try and try”, was not lost on me. Thankfully there was no major damage short of some scrapes and a nice goose egg on my knee. A new meaning to “fall” running.

Two weeks from tomorrow I will be running a marathon. The reality is just setting in. I am now into tapering for the big day. I have read a lot of information that says runners can get antsy during taper time and have a hard time adjusting to the decrease in distances. Can I just say I am NOT one of those people. I don’t know if there is something wrong with me but I am kind of excited about taking a step back from this running craziness. Don’t get me wrong, I actually enjoyed my last two long runs, both the 32k and the 35k. And yes, that whole statement just sounds wrong to me too. I think for years to come those two runs are going to stay in my memory as something special. My 32k run had those surreal moments when I felt like I was having a bit of an out of body experience; moments when I felt like I wasn’t even running. During the 35k run, despite being a little tired with a cold, I found myself smiling several times. I was smiling because a new confidence had taken over and I knew (rather than hoped) that I would be finishing the run.

But now I think I need a break. Today I was able to run but my body was telling me it was tired. Three weekends of long runs and a cold for the last week and my body wants to rest. So I may not follow a specific taper program. I know from past experiences that I run better with appropriate rest. For the next two weeks I will run when I feel like running and I won’t aim for specific distances. I will run for fun. Hopefully, on October 20 it will pay off.

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