HELP! After doing a so-so( but glad to just finsish) 1/2 marathon in April... I got back into fairly good (FAIRLY) base training , about 4 miles/ 3xweek. The heat has been a real issue for me as I train for another 1/2 at end of October. So even though I have been trying to hydrate well, run with water, and opt for shady runs- I still end up convincing myself that I am too tired to continue and I must stop and walk. I know this would be ok if it was once or twice but seems like I am pooping out more and more!!! Is my mind letting me quit? nothing really hurts me(A MIRACLE!).. I just ffel tired and hot and I quit. I do keep going after my breaks but after so many breaks , my time will be worse than last 1/2 and that was pretty bad!! My goal was to improve! ANyone else struggle with this? Thanks for any input /suggestions!
Yes, it is fairly common to struggle in the heat and humidity. Any runner with any sense knows they'd rather run a race in cool conditions vs. hot and humid. It is something that can be overcome, but noone would say it is easy, and yes, most of it must come from within yourself. Chances are you won't push yourself into a heat related stroke if you're prone to pulling up. I've never suffered a heat stroke, so I'd say it's pretty difficult to push yourself into one, because I push it pretty hard.
You can't control mother nature, so unless you join the treadmill crowd, or get up real early which isn't much different in these parts, you don't have much choice other than tough it out, keep doing what you're doing, or wait till fall.
Hot weather is definitely hard. I struggle myself. But I'm obstinate and insist on finishing anyway. First, accept that you have to run slower. Next, try run/walk. I did on my last long run and it was much easier overall. The regular walk breaks should help those "have to stop" feelings. Plus you tend to go a little faster during the running part. The payoff for continuing regular training will come when the weather cools, and you find you've picked up a little speed.
Running is such a mental sport. Whether it is dragging your butt out of bed at 4:30 in the morning to get that run in before work, pushing through that hill, or simply just finishing a run when you have "one of those days". If you are running by yourself then it is just that much harder as you don't have a buddy to keep you motivated. That being said, I totally agree with lenzlaw in that a run/walk/run approach would be good for you to try. It could be as regimented as run for 9 minutes walk for 1, or just run till you start to feel tired, then walk for a minute and then start running again. If you find you are burring out too quickly try slowing your pace down, it might take you longer to finish, but it will help condition your body to run at a manageable pace. Good luck and don't give up!
Great advice from the others and I fully agree with their suggestions. I would only add that once we train and complete a specific event, sometimes there is a lapse in the training schedule (both physical and mental) because a particular task is finished or the specific race was completed, so it can become difficult to move forward. Often times the sense of accomplishment can even be overshadowed by feelings of doubt or uncertanity about the future, but this is perfectly normal.
The best plan is to go ahead and prepare for the next challenge, so pick another (or several) competitions that are attractive for your participation and then mark them on the calendar along with your training schedule to complete. It is easy to get off track without those goals in place because the body responds to the priorities of the mindset. Also, certain levels of exhaustion are expected, so do alternate your routines and do not become discouraged with certain days that seem below what you anticipated. This is also typical and the key is to remain optomistic, cautiously adjust and keep the vision for progress. It will come at different rates, but the majority of the battle is learning to control those factors that influence your personal performance and having patience with those issues beyond your intervention.
Basically, look at the breaks as necessary rest periods to slowly build your overall endurance. Usually, this is the case and you will be fine with future objectives.
Such great advice from all and sometimes it just helps to hear some encouragement..!! I was def seeing improvement in the cooler mornings and I decided to try for less and shorter walk breaks... I also totally agree with Jasko about the "aftermath" of completing an event...Sadly I have hurt my knee and will be sitting the October 1/2 out...:(. I guess I will be training in the winter again when the heat won't be a problem! Thanks so much for each of the thoughtful responses! Each made me feel better!