Cut Back Weeks and Green-Eyed Monsters

The first three weeks of training are in the books. I progressively added mileage each week and had some good workouts.

I’d have to say, hill repeats are the hardest thing I do. It’s mentally taxing because the effort increases, but the speed either stays the same or decreases. I am always both humbled and exhilarated after a hill workout.

My past week or running topped at 78 miles. That is a lot for me personally. Many other ultrarunners get into the triple digit miles during peak training. My mileage will not exceed 100, or even close really, during this training.

I want to process the beginning of the week, because I hit a low point mentally on Monday. I was still feeling a bit down about my almost bonk on Friday, so my emotions were fragile and doubting my fitness. Then I got news about a friend’s AMAZING marathon in which she crushed her previous PR. I was very happy for her, but then the green-eyed monster hit me pretty hard.

I have run races very close to this person last year. We have trained together. She is an amazing runner and works very hard. She deserved this.

I began to doubt myself and subsequently fall into a depressed mood. Thoughts about my season and what I was doing challenged what I know about myself.

Thoughts like:

“What if I focused on marathon training in the past season? I could be that fast now!”

“What am I doing wrong?! Why am I not as fast?”

“I feel so slow, I almost bonked on a run that wasn’t even that long.”

Silly, self-centered and ableist thoughts caused me to retreat into myself and be sad. That’s it really, I was just sad.

Jealousy really sucks.

I felt the feelings all day, but my mom was with me all day keeping my mind occupied. I didn’t sleep that well, but woke up feeling a bit better.

New thoughts surfaced that morning:

“I love ultra training and am happy doing this.”

“I am only in my third week of training, I will get better.”

“At the end of the day, I run because it makes me happy, not because I am better than someone else.”

“I am really happy for this person!”

I didn’t feel like I forced these things, but reminded myself that this is the truth.

I also hit my workout that morning, which made me really happy 🙂

The rest of the week went smoothly, although I was a bit scared curious about two 18 mile runs, I took each day at a time. I had no fitness issues, just a few other things I am sorting out and have already begun to get better.

Looking forward to a cut-back week! #runchat @runningblogs Click To Tweet

This week my mileage is cut in half and I’ll recover for the next segment.

See you out there!


19 thoughts on “Cut Back Weeks and Green-Eyed Monsters”

  1. That’s a tough thing and I have been there especially since I’m not a fast runner and it seems so many younger runners around me are. Sometimes it’s important to just focus on your own path and goals and reminder everyone has different life challenges to balance in. Awesome job on your workouts, sounds like you’re rocking your training!

    1. Thanks Christine! Sometimes the ones that get me are the “13 year old ran a marathon in 3:XX” It’s incredible and yet I always wonder who I would be if I started earlier. Oh well, you can only move forward right?

  2. WOW 78 miles? I totally know what you mean by jealousy Ellie, and I’m glad that new thoughts, new reasons to be thankful surfaced. That always helps me especially when I’m struggling with athletic jealousy or blogging jealousy.

  3. Good for you Ellie. This is strong of you for a) letting yourself have those thoughts and letting them have their time and b) being able to shift them back to something compassionate and self encouraging. Your thoughts are true. Jealousy absolutely sucks. Sucks balls. But none of us can be anyone else. We do our own thing and things will turn out for us in our own ways.

  4. Comparison is such an easy trap to fall into! Your new thoughts are so perfect though. When you realise you’re the only one running YOUR race, everything changes – and you can focus on running better yourself instead of having that grass is greener mentality.

    Afterall, the grass is greener where you water it 😉 xo

  5. Comparison really is the thief of joy. I catch myself getting wrapped up in it often though. You saw that those comparisons and negative thoughts had no place though, which is so important to recognize. Ellie, you blow me away with your strength, determination, and resilience. This season will be yours. I know you’ll kill it because you always do <3

  6. A 78 mile week? I can’t even imagine doing anything else besides sleeping and eating if I ran that much. I think you’re learning alot though this training cycle though, about yourself, what you’re capable of, and what’s important.

  7. Way to combat those negative thoughts, Ellie. To me, 78 miles is amazing. Your workouts are inspiring, and you’re super speedy! It’s all about perspective and knowing you’re doing the best you can every single day!

  8. I think it can be so hard to not compare ourselves to other people and their training, but at the end of the day, each person and their body is different. Some people have been doing it longer, or naturally more gifted, or are better at preventing injury, but being happy for others is definitely important in our sport!

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