Marathon training: Week 18 of 22…….

IMG_3673Week 18 of my 22 week marathon plan dawned on Sunday morning. I woke early and headed downstairs to fuel up before another 18/19 mile run. Two obligatory weetabix and wholegrain toast washed down with a cup of joe (when did we start calling coffee joe?) was my breakfast of champions. I gathered my gels together, made up my energy drink and packed up my running belt and started with dread to climb the stairs to get ready. Surely this is not how I should be feeling so close to race day.

I have been finding recently that I have not been looking forward to my runs, delaying them if possible and looking for any excuse not to run. The joy of a simple run in the countryside was replaced with an attitude of I need to get this over and done with. So on Sunday after 18 weeks of training I decided that marathon running was not for me. I am 35 years of age, I work part time until 11pm three evenings a week, I run my own business, have three children and a husband to look after and am wondering what in the name of god I was thinking of!

I spent Sunday bringing the children to the park, cooking a delicious roast chicken and relaxing on the sofa. Since making my decision I have ran 2 5k country runs which were absolute bliss and faster than anything I have ran in months! I am writing this post so that in years to come when I am wondering why I gave up my marathon dream I can read back on this and realise that despite not completing the marathon I came pretty damn close. I have ran 18 miles without stopping which I never dreamed I would be able to do. I feel like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders and I can now get back to running for joy! Bring on the endorphins.

Best of luck to all participants in the Dublin Marathon, I will be there supporting you all and giving you a big cheer!

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10 Responses to Marathon training: Week 18 of 22…….

  1. The Glutton says:

    Good for you Paula being so honest and not forcing yourself to do something you weren’t enjoying anymore. God knows there are enough things in life that are a chore like work!

  2. Paula Nolan Photography says:

    Aw Paula. I’m glad that you are happy and relieved with your decision and thankfully you didn’t call it a day because of an injury. My longest run was the half marathon recently and I don’t know how I did that, never mind 18 miles if continuous running. That’s amazing. Enjoy all of your relaxing runs and well done for being so brave as to call it a day because you listened to yourself and not to keep going at something that your heart wasn’t in. Lovely honest blog post. See you soon for coffee x

    • Paula says:

      Paula am over the moon that I made the right decision for myself, was worried about letting people down but then I had a lightlbulb moment were I realised it doesn’t make any difference to anyone only me not running it! Def a coffee date soon or maybe gin! 😉

  3. Peggy says:

    I just don’t know how you do it all.! But the most important thing is to do the things that makes you happy. Life is too precious.

  4. Gill says:


    Let me caveat this by saying that it sounds like you’ve made the right decision and goodness knows I wouldn’t manage a marathon if I had a family. That said, I just wanted to offer a slight nuance of view…
    I have found that I go through that phase of hating running when it gets to the long training runs. It’s a very normal thing to go through. If you can cope with it mentally you can do a training plan that doesn’t need them – upandrunning are an online coaching site that did me one. I prefer doing long runs because psychologically I need to know I can but at the time I couldn’t fit them in. In fact I’m currently I the “running sucks” phase but my marathon is on Sunday. I bet you that on Tuesday morning I’ll be wanting to get out there and looking up what the next one is. So anyway…. I just wanted to say that it’s normal to lose the joy for a bit but that doing a marathon, (should you decide one day that you do want to ) is really fun overall. Also, it’s never too late. No says you have to be fast!! No one says you have to love long distance either though so enjoy whatever. X

  5. Allan morris says:

    well done paula, 18 miles not stopping enough said fair play! Enjoy “retirement”

  6. Eadaoin Quinn says:

    Fair play Paula! Pity the poor sods who soldier on because they don’t have the courage to stop. I’m still in the saddle, it feels like forever since we started! BTW It’s a lovely blog. eadaoin

  7. Pingback: Why don’t you just do it? » Paula's Kitchen Table

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