Weeks 11 and 12 – Training for an Ultra Marathon

Well, the theme of the these weeks as well as Week 10 has been of sickness.  Week 10 was a stomach issue but weeks 11 and 12 were of influenza and bronchitis.  It was the first time I think I had a full blown case of flu in years and the last time I had bronchitis was three years ago.  It was rough.

I did manage a few runs.  Because I missed week 10’s long run of 8 miles, I intended to do those 8 miles on Monday of week 11.  I planned to run 5 by myself or with friends and 3-4 more with Jenn.  Well, I did do the five miles but it was cold and I was still feeling somewhat weak and figured I would get back into it by Wednesday.

Wrong.  I was very tired that night and didn’t think much of it.  By Tuesday afternoon, within about one hour’s span, I knew I was getting sick with the flu.  I had every symptom except for fever and that was that.  I rested as best as I could and by Friday I was starting to get optimistic about running the Ground Hog Day Marathon for my longest training run of the season.  Nope.  Things went from cautiously optimistic to crappy over night.  By Saturday morning, I knew there was no way I should do the run.  And I just didn’t care.  I later heard it was cold, windy, and there was 8″ inches of snow on the ground and thus it was really hard.

I spent probably 44 of the 48 hours of the weekend in bed and my back was killing me by the end.  On Monday, the cough went productive and I started coughing up some blood.  I immediately went to the doctor and came home with a prescription for antibiotics and steroids.  I don’t know if they did the trick or if I was going to improve but I am betting on the meds.  I started recovering and was about to do 5 miles by Friday.  Recovery runs after several days or weeks of serious illness suck.  I have to stay this one was rough but there were hills and deep snow and ice so I never would have felt quite right in my stride even if I hadn’t been sick.

I had hoped to get in another 7 or 8 miles on Saturday but I was at a convention, training on running, ironically, and was tired and didn’t do my running.  Shame on me.  😉 .  But seriously, I now have a mental hurdle to get past.  I missed my much-needed marathon training run and although I have half marathon at the start of week 14, I don’t really have any time or options left to make it up.  Therefore I will have to enter the 42 mile ultra with only half of that distance (21 miles) as my longest training run.  This is not good.  Will I finish?  I sure hope so.  But perhaps not.  Fortunately for me, I know what it is like to go into a race with a doubt of completing it.  However, this is a serious hurdle and I know that.  Will have to hope even more for good weather, no more illness, and some luck.

We shall see what week 13 will bring.  It is a light week of running because the half marathon immediately follows it.



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