Well, I didn’t want to start this next series of race prep posts with some bad news, but I woke up with a sore throat and a headache after my first week of dedicated half marathon training. So here we are.
If you haven’t been following along, I am racing the Standard Chartered Singapore Half Marathon on November 30. It’s my last race of what has been a long year coming back from overtraining.
My last 21K was back in 2017 when I did the Angkor Wat International Half Marathon in a year where my health was up-and-down. The following year (2018) I struggled so much with overtraining because I always got sick whenever I ramped up my training hours, so I kind of gave up trying to run longer than 5K and stopped training for triathlons.
This year I felt well enough to start training and racing properly again, which led to racing seven triathlons (sprints and supersprints only). I’ve gotten aerobically fit enough to race for almost two hours, so with a little careful work I could toe the starting line of a half-marathon by the end of the year, and the SCSM was timed perfectly for that.
But I guess I’ve gotten a bit too cavalier with training length and intensity and bit off more than I could chew in the past two weeks. I started cramming in the mileage and once again didn’t listen to my body until I nearly pushed it off the edge.
Every body is unique and responds to training differently depending on genetics, health and fitness history, and age. What workload I could have gotten away with in my late 20’s is now punishing for me in my late 30’s. My history of overtraining also probably makes me more fragile and prone to suffering from it again. And yes, I am an age group athlete, not an elite athlete with the natural ability to go fast and long at low heart rates.
So I guess I need to calm down on the training, trust how I’m feeling (and act on it!!!) and remember that I’ve always raced better when slightly “undercooked”. Midway through last week I was already whining about having to run daily; instead of brute-forcing my way through the rest of the assigned workouts, I should have just taken a rest day already.
I don’t really have a goal time for this half-marathon, so my main focus is getting to the starting line healthy.