March 2, 2018

Training for Marathon #3

I'm nine weeks into training for my third marathon!  My first one was the Shamrock Marathon in Virginia Beach in 2014, finishing in 4:17.  My second one was the NYC Marathon in 2016, finishing in 4:28.  My goal for this one is to finally break 4:00.  To do so, I'm focusing on three areas: Nutrition, Running (form; speed), Cross Training.

I am putting the largest focus on nutrition.  With my knowledge of the Tone It Up Nutrition Plan plus listening to what my body needs, I'm making a conscious effort to fuel by body with as much clean, unprocessed foods as possible for the 16-week training program.  Here is what I'm eating:
  • Protein
    • Meats - chicken, salmon, shrimp, beef, ground turkey (after reading The Dorito Effect**, I try to choose grass fed, free range, and wild caught as often as possible.)
    • Eggs
    • Protein smoothies
  • Fat
    • Peanut and almond butters
    • Avocados
    • Butter
  • Carbs
    • Oats - oatmeal is my go-to breakfast before long runs
    • Starches - Sweet potatoes and Yukon potatoes, gluten free pasta, brown rice + quinoa, corn tortillas (preferably GMO free)

I have a major sweet tooth that I've been making a conscious effort to kick. It is a work in progress but I've found fruity gum (Extra Watermelon & Trident Tropical Twist) after a meal has worked best for me.

Water - I'm trying to drink at least 70 oz. a day.  It's been a challenge with being so cold here.

**Other excellent books I've read in this category are:
  • Grain Brain
  • Wheat Belly
  • Sugar Crush
  • I have Gut on my shelf but haven't read it yet.

Some of my favorite recipes have been Superhero Muffins (p. 42) from Run Fast Eat Slow:

Fish Tacos with Mango-Avocado Salsa (p. 136).  I'll change these up by adding shrimp, pico, pineapple, white cheddar... whatever we have on hand.

Hummingbird Muffins from The Runner's World Cookbook:

Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Stuffed Peppers - One of my absolute favorites! I've made this recipe quite a few times.

Firecracker Pineapple Chicken - I used Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free flour instead of Tapioca Starch because I already had it on hand. On the blander side but still very good.

Slow Cooker Broccoli Beef - I served this over rice for added carbs. Great weeknight dinner because it is so simple and my Crock Pot does all of the work!

I joined a training team, something that I didn't do for my first two.  We have about 15 people training for a spring marathon and our coach has been great at personalizing the training to meet each of our specific goals.  The training team has been great accountability for me, meeting 2 nights a week and Saturday and Sunday mornings.

Two to three days a week, I take a 6:00 AM strength/conditioning class.  I've been attending this small group training since June 2017 and have never looked or felt stronger.  This has had a great impact on my endurance.  I ran my last half marathon (November 2017) in 1:54, only running 2-3 days/week and cross training here 3 days/week.

Barefoot training (well, in socks!)

I also have made it a priority since December to get monthly deep tissue massages.  I feel SO GOOD afterwards and know that this has helped my muscles recover.  If I ever win the lottery, I'm getting weekly deep tissue massages!

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