I am not a serious runner.
I'm calling this Serious Running for a Non-Serious Runner because I'm not serious. I'm rarely serious about anything. If I tell you I'm serious about something, chances are I'm trying to convince you of a tall tale. Don't believe me (also, I usually collapse into giggles with in about 3 seconds of attempting to fabricate something, so I probably won't even get to the "I'm serious" part of it).
There are two types of runners in this world. There are the talented, fast, serious runners who win races, talk about miles per week, and look fabulous in swimming suits. These are the runners who look like they were born to run.
Then there are the non-serious runners. The people who started running one day and just... kept doing it, but really with no plan, no goal (other than to drop a few pounds), and look like total goofballs when they run. This is me.
I'm deadly afraid of serious runners. If I mention to a serious runner that I run, they start in on conversations that I don't follow. Fortunately most of them have never attempted an ultramaraton. Most have stopped at the marathon distance, and mentioning training for an ultra typically shuts them up, or they ask something vaguely judgey like "Have you ever run a marathon before?" with a snideish look on their face. I'm scared they will figure me out though. A non-serious runner running an ultramarathon is like... sacrilege or something.
Here is the problem with training for really long distance races: you have to take this seriously. Running a 5k? Sure I can jump out of bed tomorrow and finish it, trained or not. Worst case scenario: I walk for an hour. Running 50 miles: worst case scenario: I can't even imagine. The last time I did this, after the race I suggested to my husband that I might need to go to the Emergency Room, because for the life of me, I could not stand up from the parking lot in downtown Manistee that I was laying in. I would like to avoid this problem after my next race (I was okay, by the way. Thanks for asking).
This necessitates a serious training schedule.
For non-serious runners like me, a training schedule can be painful. Here is a typical morning for me:
Me: Good morning self! Time to get up and run!
Self: Gaaarrrrrrgh (My self takes a few minutes to gain coherency first thing in the morning)
Me: But it is time to run!
Me: Fine, if we don't run, what do you want to do?
Self: Weight lift, Pilates, HIIT, anything other than slogging around campus in the dark. I hate campus.
Me: What if we go trail run?
Self: Do you know how far you have to drive to get a trail run in?
Me: Fine. Fine fine fine. Let's just get out of bed and figure it out when we are brushing our teeth.
Self: Fine. By the way, you are gaining weight (My self likes to throw pot shots in at me)
With a training schedule, my self will have to shut up in the morning. There are no more "I don't want to run this morning" conversations, no more "It's too hot/ cold/ windy/ rainy/ sunny/ apocalyptic outside to run" moments.
My husband and I (since we are actually in the same room on a Sunday morning) just mapped out our training schedule for the North Country Run. There are 257 days until the race. The 16 week plan we mapped out starts in May. It can be found here: https://tribesports.com/guides/beyond-the-ultimate-16-week-ultra-marathon-trainin?s=1
We have 4.5 months to get ourselves in shape to start the training schedule. This demands we take a careful look at where we are now in terms of running fitness, the types of distance we need to achieve weekly prior to this training schedule, and a careful look at our nutition.
I'm starting to sound like a serious runner. Or at least trying to make a convincing argument of being a serious runner. You guys. I'm so serious right now!!!!
(And this is where I bust out with the giggles)