Half Marathon Taper Week – What I Ate & What I Did

My half marathon is tomorrow! It’s gorgeous weather right now just for existing but for running it’s a little warmer than I’d like–getting into the 70s lately. But the current forecast for tomorrow’s 7am start looks pretty good (ignoring the humidity):



So I’ll likely be freezing at the start and hot at the end. I’ll find a throwaway shirt to wear over my tank top and shorts and get rid of it at the start.

I’ve had an extremely mellow and enjoyable taper week. It’s probably a combination of the fact this is my 6th half marathon and I know what to expect, my body is feeling good, and I’m so happy to see the sun again. Here’s how my taper week has gone:

Monday

I don’t remember. This post is off to a great start! I think I took Leonard on an easy 20 minute walk after work. Walks with him are always easy because he stops every minute to smell things. But I just wanted to get my legs moving, so that was fine. Plus, spring! These guys have arrived in our front yard and they’re a welcome sight.



Tuesday

What I ate:



I’m definitely in the “eat all the things” phase of half marathon training. I’m sure Runner’s World would not recommend fueling with Steak ‘n Shake but I do not care.



What I did:

I swam for 45 minutes at 6:30am. I covered 60 laps (give or take because I have counting issues over a long period of time) and it felt amzing. 

image

Wednesday

What I ate:

Getting into more traditional race week foods, I made a giant amount of pasta with meat sauce. Dinner Wednesday and lunch the next two days. I balanced that out with this. 



As you can see I ripped into those Cadbury creme eggs like an animal. I’ve been eating them all week. I really love Easter chocolate. 

What I did:

I realized it’s now warm enough to run outside in the morning, yay! My only issue is I have to wait until about 6:30am so the sun is up and the opposums are gone. 



I chose to run around Carondelet park and back along the River Des Peres. Saw a crow that promptly flew away from me the minute I tried to take its picture.



Running in the morning is so peaceful and pretty.



I finished 4 miles in a speedy for me 39:14. 9:48 average pace.

Thursday

What I ate:

Went to Bread (bread!) Company and got a whole Asiago Steak and chips for dinner. Yum. Finished that off with some chocolate later. My eating habits should improve dramatically once the chocolate is out of our house. 

What I did:

Stationary bike for 30 minutes. Covered about 6 miles. Wasn’t biking for distance, just to stretch my legs out and get all the muscles feeling good. I did some additional stretching afterward. As I left the gym these guys scared the crap out of me.



When I don’t go to nature it comes to me apparently. I said hello and went about my day. 

Friday

What I ate:

Mexican food! We went to Chimichanga’s on Grand to belatedly celebrate our friend Rhonda’s birthday. I had a carne asada burrito and two margaritas. I never used to consume alcohol the week of a race. I’ve obviously relaxed that policy. It’s a good thing I was relaxed because this happened. 



Not awkward at all to have a mariachi guy performing two songs to us as we ate.

What I did:

My last prerace run was that morning! I covered 2.35 miles in 22 minutes around beautiful Carondelet park. 



I achieved that speedy 9:22 pace in part because I knew the run would be short but mostly because it was 46 degrees (brr!) and I was using this as a dress rehearsal for my planned race outfit. 

image

In case you can’t tell from my awesome outfit photography skills it’s a tank top and fairly short shorts. I was freezing until about 3/4 of the first mile then I just felt ok. Hands a little cold. I may need throwaway gloves tomorrow. I have to keep reminding myself dressing to feel cold at the start is what I want. I am sticking with this outfit even though I feel cold just thinking about it. 

Goals for tomorrow

I haven’t given a lot of thought to this but I’ve come up with a few because it’s fun to have goals. 

  1. Improve on my last half marathon time, 2:15:48 at the Mo’ Cowbell Half Marathon last October. This would require faster than 10:21 minute miles.
  2. Improve on my 2013 Go Half Marathon time of 2:12:41. This is a new course so it’s not really comparable other than the fact it’s a spring half marathon but I will compare anyway. This would require faster than 10:07 minute miles.
  3. Run 10 minute miles or faster, meaning a finish time of 2:11 or better. I know my body is capable of this in general but it will come down to how my body feels tomorrow. And if I stop to take photos on the bridges. 

I would like to reach any of those goals but mainly I’m looking forward to running on a new course. I may decide to just enjoy the scenery of the route and not push too hard. I’m excited to see what happens!

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One response to “Half Marathon Taper Week – What I Ate & What I Did

  1. I don’t like opossums! Not even thinking about them. But I do like your post, and I wish you a nice day and a good run! I think it’s neat that you’re going into Illinois and back, and over two bridges. Have fun!

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