I am now in the part of marathon training known as tapering. Over the next two and a half weeks, I’ll reduce my running mileage to rest up for the California International Marathon on December 4th.
For last year’s marathons, I ran double digit long runs every weekend for three months straight before tapering began. I appreciated the taper! This year, the tapering effect is less obvious, because my long runs have been every three weeks, with shorter, less-intense runs in between. For instance, in September I ran 20 miles, followed a week later with a 12 mile run with mile repeats. A week after, I did a 7 mile “magic mile” run. The following Saturday, I ran 23 miles. While I ran two 20+ mile runs over a four week period, the two other weekends were comparatively light. In fact, the 7-mile magic mile run felt as if I was taking the weekend off 🙂
With a schedule like this, I have already experienced multiple mini tapers within this training cycle. This has really changed the feel of marathon training. Rather than a continuous unrelenting build up of long runs, there’s time between long runs to rest up. So now while I do appreciate being officially in the tapering period, I’m not as concerned this time around about it. I am, however, very glad to recover from my 27.5 mile run 11 days ago!
So bring on the taper. Anything that gets me to CIM well-rested and ready to go is good by me!