Road to Rotterdam: Training and the daily grind

Pain. Rain. Wind. Exhaustion.

These marked my first week back to the work and my marathon training. After three weeks in the tropics and more than a week of being tied to bed with a really terrible throat infection, I was glad that I was back to my normal routine. But it didn’t go as easy as I had anticipated.

Monday started out well. I was very early in the office, first in fact (which doesn’t happen very often). I probably still have a little bit of jet lag but one of my 2015 goals is to wake up at 6am. You can do so much more when you wake up early. Monday was our rest day because of a 10.5km run the day before so the day went smoothly. We even popped a bottle of Barbera in the evening.

Less cold and wind in these running clothes.

Less cold and wind in these running clothes.

Tuesday was the week’s first run. According to the Nike’s marathon schedule, we have five scheduled runs last week. Despite the cold, the rain and the wind, the 8.4km traing went fine. I wasn’t complaining.

But Wednesday was really tough. There was too much work  and despite arriving at the office at 8am, I finished at 6pm, tired and hungry. But there was an 11km scheduled run that day and I don’t want to miss on training. There’s only three months left until the 2015 Rotterdam Marathon. We had to put on mileage and build endurance.

So despite coming home at 7pm starving and exhausted, I changed into my running clothes and forced myself out of the house. Again it was raining, cold and windy. Last week’s weather was very depressing that one evening I told Robin that I’m afraid I might back out of this marathon because of the evening runs. But we shouldered on.

I was still running above 6:00min/km, much slower than my 5:25/km record before I went on a holiday. Sometimes it was frustrating and I would find myself forcing my legs to run faster. But I couldn’t. The elements were irritating me, so did the muddy trail in the park where we were running. We weren’t able to finish our goal of 11km and and decided to head home after 10.6km.

Feeling like congratulating myself for the effort of the day, I opened a bag of Bugles, my favorite chips, a jar of HEKS’NKAAS for the dip, a bottle of Medoc and finished them all in one evening. I think I deserved such a treat after almost breaking down due to the cold, my shin splints and side stitches.

They say these are bad for your training but...

They say these are bad for your training but…

On Thursday I gave up trying to be fast and stopped fighting the elements. We ran a slow 6.4km ordered a delicious box of pizza for dinner, a can of cola and ate with gusto all the fatty, oily and delicious goodness they say are bad for you.

Friday was another rest day. Don’t you just love rest days? It was actually scheduled for cross training so for the first time after more than a month, I was back on my saddle pedaling happily to the office on a foggy morning.

The canal was covered with mist, the soft, yellow lights of the lamp posts and distant buildings illuminated beautifully on the very still waters.

I wanted to stop to take pictures, freeze the moment forever but I followed that tiny voice in my head that says “Just enjoy. This is all yours for the moment. You don’t have to share it on Instagram. Just soak in in this beauty.” So for about 15 minutes I’ve had a magical ride along the canals. So magical that it was almost spiritual.

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This photo is an attempt for a little ootd and a proof that I can never be a fashion blogger.

This photo is an attempt for a little ootd and a proof that I can never be a fashion blogger.

In the evening, I met up with Robin to have dinner in Rotterdam, at our favorite Vietnamese restaurant Lil V. Just before I went inside the restaurant, I snapped this photo of Blaak. Finally some blue skies after a whole grey week.

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Saturday was a beautiful day. Waking up late, morning run, two cups of coffee and long breakfast. I also had my first driving lesson after I’ve returned and it went smooth. Totally unexpected. In the evening, we uncorked a bottle of a fine Primitivo and when the husband went out with his friends, I finished it.

We capped off the week with a 14.6km run on Sunday afternoon, again in the rain, wind, and cold. This time however, I didn’t mind. I just enjoyed my run.

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