Five weeks out from Boston: managing fatigue + tune-up races

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The Boston Marathon is five weeks out and after logging 60+ miles in one week, I feel fatigued, physically and also mentally. My coach has backed off my training for a little taper before a tune-up race this Saturday. And I’m trying to give myself a mental back off week as well. More on that below!

Running a tune-up race

I’m planning to run the Feed Stokes Half Marathon, with 2 miles to warm-up and 3 miles to cool down, to still get in a long run. But, last I looked there are only 47 people registered for the race! That will definitely make it interesting to push myself since a larger field typically helps with that. But hey, it will be good practice to deal with race nerves, test my gear out (including my race-day shoes) and test my fueling strategy.

I did my second run in the Nike Vaporfly 4% and am still OBSESSED. I cannot get over how fast they are. My workout on Monday included 1600m at 6:55 pace, and I had to rein myself in because I kept looking down to see 6:20s on my watch. Then on the 4x400m repeats, I noticed how springy they felt as I picked up speed more quickly. (Let me know if you guys want a full in-depth review of these shoes!) I can’t wait to race in them!

marathon fatigue

Managing fatigue in marathon training

The mini taper couldn’t have come at a better time. I’ve been feeling kind of worn out and my body has a few extra aches and pains lately. My coach, Enoch, is AWESOME and adjusts my schedule to keep me healthy since. As he reminds me, a great race includes showing up on race day without injuries. And I’m still going regularly to my PT for needling to help with that. (I blogged all about dry needling here!)

Enoch also reminds me that I’ve had some big weeks, so it’s normal and expected to feel fatigued and to have tired legs. That’s kind of the beauty of marathon training – once you get to the point where you’re almost over it, you get to taper. (And then try not to lose your mind in the taper.)

And don’t forget about mental fatigue

Besides communicating with Enoch about how I feel and getting needled, I’m trying to do yoga once a week and get more regular massages. Those help my body AND my mind. Mental fatigue in marathon training is real, and I think we focus so much on physical fatigue and recovery and overlook the mental impact. But burnout is real, and it can come from overtraining and under-resting both our body and mind.

marathon training

Brooks Launch | Oiselle Roga Shorts | similar compression socks | Athleta Speedlight tee | Goodr sunglasses | Garmin Forerunner 235

So, with that in mind, I’m trying to not put too much pressure on myself with everything else going on in life and letting things ebb and flow. That includes blogging, saying no to things that I don’t have to do and letting some things go undone in the house for a bit. Case in point – notice the pile of laundry behind me in the photo above. 🙂

It’s been a super busy week over here with the current Beautycounter promo (shoot me an email me at [email protected] for more details), and so again, I’m giving myself some grace to get behind in other areas. But, I am hoping to get back on top blogging and writing soon! I’ve got the following posts on deck and I’d love to hear what you’re interested in reading first!

  • Alcohol & marathon training
  • Packing tips (I have so much travel lately and more coming!)
  • My current skincare routine
  • Ireland recap #2 – Cork & Kenmare (Sheesh, I got REALLY behind on that topic, ha! My first recap about our time in Dublin was in November.)

Alright, I’m off to do an easy recovery run (should be fun after getting seven vials of blood drawn this morning). I think I’ll listen to a podcast to keep the low-key mentality! (Sometimes my favorite playlists make me want to run too hard!)

How do you manage mental fatigue in training? Do you think about it?

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    4 responses to “Five weeks out from Boston: managing fatigue + tune-up races”

    1. I’m pretty sure you use Nuun – which I’m going to give another try, lately the Tailwind I always use has been bugging my stomach. I have to change but I feel like I still have time to work it out before Boston????? Anyways, have you seen this? I’m curious about it. A friend of mine is an Ambassador for them. She really likes it. And even though she’s an ambassador, I totally trust her to be honest. Ands curious, do you ever take salt tabs?

    2. Yes, I’m exhausted right now HA! Also training for Boston (my first). I have a case report to do this weekend and I’m already tired thinking about doing it after my long run with pace miles tomorrow…but I remember this is my choice and each workout is preparing me well for race day!

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