Andy McKay

Feb 15, 2023

No marathons this year

The last 3 years my goal has to be do marathons and also long 160km+ bike races. But I’ve noticed this has produced a pattern in my behaviour that I’d like to break. The goal marathon for me has been the Vancouver BMO Marathon in May and we start training in January. So my years goes like this:

  • January: I’m unfit and I’ve eaten too much, time to get into shape and train.
  • February: Ugh, the worst time.
  • March: I’m doing 20km training runs and feeling good.
  • April: I’m doing 30km training runs and feeling great. I’m not cycling enough and the cycling clubs have started.
  • May: Marathon. Marathons hurt, why am I doing this? I hate it. I’m falling behind on cycling. My legs hurt.
  • June: I hate running, I’m never running again. I’m behind on cycling.
  • July: I hate running, I’m never running again. I can’t catch up with the cyclists. I’m off my diet and gaining weight.
  • August: Wow the mountains are amazing I’m going hiking. Forget running and cycling.
  • September: Big bike races. I hate cycling.
  • October, November, December: I’ve failed at cyling and running and I’m in a funk. Only 3 months till the cycle starts again.

I peak at the marathon, it ruins my legs and I stop running. The running bites into my cycling and I fail at that. The thing is:

  • I’ve not gotten to the point where marathons aren’t destroying me.
  • Running and cycling both take up lots of time to train a lot.
  • My motivation drops off a cliff after the marathon.
  • I actually enjoy the marathon training, 20-30km distances feel good and I can feel the improvement.

You can see my fitness change here 👇

Those circles are the BMO Marathon and the Whistler Fondo respectively. You can see the build up before hand, the inconsistency inbetween and then the drop at the end.

This year I’m going to try to be more balanced and see if I can:

  • Just do half marathons, but increase my time regularly instead of aiming for longer distances.
  • Be more balanced, with cycling, running, weights and hiking.
  • Improve and maintain a base level of fitness instead of feeling like I have to climb out of a hole every winter.

And maybe a triathlon.