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Taper Time!

March 24, 2012

IT’S SATURDAY! Who’s excited?! I am! I just hope today is less rainy than yesterday! I didn’t leave my apartment until later afternoon because it just kept pouring and I didn’t want to go out there in the rain! These are the times when I wish I had a car and lived in a drivable city…


I have, however, noticed that the 10-day forecast already includes my half marathon coming up! That means it’s less than 10 days away!!!! (It’s Sunday, April 1st).


The race starts at 8:15, so I’m guessing it may be around 48-50 when the race starts? Haha I need to stop speculating. I just think it helps me visualize the race if I know the weather, and what I’ll be wearing! I run best in shorts, so I’m thinking compression sleeves, shorts, t-shirt and a long-sleeve over it? Thoughts?

Along with visualizing the half marathon (and KICKING BUTT! Like my new attitude? Let’s see how long this optimism lasts), I’m also tapering right now! I think most people taper only in the week beforehand, but as I mentioned in a previous post I started tapering 2 weeks before because I’m really burnt out and over-trained. I’ve done several 12 milers and a 13 miler so I think I’m set.

Some of you may be wondering – what in the world is tapering!?!? Yes, I realize the “running world” has it’s own language. According to Wikipedia (the source of all knowledge, other than my Dad), tapering is:

“The practice of reducing exercise in the days just before an important competition. Tapering is customary in many endurance sports, such as the marathon, athletics and swimming. For many athletes, a significant period of tapering is essential for optimal performance.”

Basically, it means scaling back on your training so that you aren’t exhausted for race day. I read an article on discussing tapering for various distances. For a half-marathon, it suggests cutting mileage 2 weeks before the race and including a speed run in each week, shorter in the second week. It also recommends to not cross train on rest days, but actually rest! 

For me, this may be difficult. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m participating in Tina’s Best Body Bootcamp!


Bootcamp includes 3 days of strength training, 2 days of cardio, 1 day of rest and an optional cardio day. Already this week I’ve had to cut back a bit. During phase 2 (which is this week and next week) we are doing a lot of weights and strength training. I did the lower body workout on Tuesday, and I could barely walk, let alone run, for days afterwards. I felt almost back to normal yesterday! Lesson learned: no leg strength training (especially anything new!) during taper time. I’ve only run 6 miles this week so far because of it!

So I’ve decided that I’m completely nixing the leg workout next week, probably doing the upper body, and then instead of doing the full-body, I’ll either do something like yoga or just do upper body again. Although I’m sad to be missing out on these workouts (I LOVE them!) I’ve got to be ready for my race!

Other than cutting back on mileage and getting more rest, I also plan to focus on hydrating and eating plenty of carbs (and a liiiiittle less fiber – I eat a lot!) next week, along with stretching and foam rolling! I’ve gotten pretty bad about foam rolling and need to get back to it!

For more exciting news, I caved:

photo (33)

My name is Katie and I am addicted to Froyo. I need a 12 step program. Or a faster metabolism and a digestive system that can handle more white sugar.


Any tapering/pre-race suggestions out there?

What are you currently addicted to?

Do you prefer a walking city or a driving city?

35 Comments leave one →
  1. March 24, 2012 8:21 am

    For my half in January, it was around 50 when the race started and it was PERFECT weather. I brought along a “throw away” sweatshirt and tossed it when the race started. Then I ran in capris and a short sleeved shirt!

  2. Olivia permalink
    March 24, 2012 9:18 am

    Walking cities – for sure – since I either take the bus/subway or walk, since I don’t have a car or a license.

    • March 24, 2012 1:05 pm

      you don’t have a license?? Haha I’m going to guess you’re from New York!

      • Olivia permalink
        March 25, 2012 8:25 pm

        Oh nope, I live In Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Haha I just take the bus to school or work, and boyfriend does the rest!

  3. March 24, 2012 9:37 am

    i am definitely addicted to froyo too – doesn’t help that i work in a local froyo shop part time!! haha 🙂

    i like walking cities better because it’s more fun to explore!

    • March 24, 2012 1:05 pm

      My froyo place has a hiring sign in the window! I’m so tempted but I know I’d eat too much sugar, which makes me feel so sick!

  4. March 24, 2012 10:12 am

    eeek! your half is coming up so fast! i’m so excited for you. 🙂 you’ll rock it. the weather looks like it’ll be perfect running weather for you! i like when there’s a little chill in the air, but not too cold and not too hot.
    i love me some frozen yogurt too! just had some last night!

  5. March 24, 2012 11:02 am

    mmm that froyo looks amazing! I have a pre-race tradition of getting froyo the night before (probably a bad idea..?) and last night they had malted easter egg and chocolate bunny froyo at yogurt mountain!!!

    i think 50 degrees is perfect for shorts and a long sleeve that you can take off during the race in case you get too hot. my 10K this morning was all in the rain, so i hope you dont have any of that!! although it wasnt too bad because it helped cool me off

    • March 24, 2012 1:06 pm

      I remember reading on hungry runner girl that some runners swear by ice cream or fro yo the night before races! And I’m so jealous, I LOVE yogurt mountain, I wish we had it here!

  6. March 24, 2012 11:38 am

    Fro Yo is THE best fuel for taper time. It has been proven 😉

    Good luck with the taper fun!

  7. March 24, 2012 12:37 pm

    I am totally with you on the froyo! It’s one of my addictions!

  8. March 24, 2012 1:01 pm

    Apart from following training plans exactly, I haven’t done much work with tapering. I just know that if I don’t run AT ALL for a couple days before the race, my legs are itching to run again and I think it makes me faster (although that might be all in my head!). I’m following a plan right now that has me running 12 miles the weekend before the run and I’m debating if I want to do it or not.

    Love your comment about wikipedia being the source of all your knowledge besides your dad… pretty much true for me, too! 🙂

    Have a great Saturday, Katie!

    • March 24, 2012 1:47 pm

      Yea mine has me running 13 this weekend, but I know I’m just burntout. I’ve been doing 12-13 mile runs for almost 2 months… too much! I hope you have a great saturday too!

  9. March 24, 2012 2:58 pm

    Giving up candy/chocolate for Lent has put a serious dent in my froyo schedule. Devastating.

  10. commitcomplete permalink
    March 24, 2012 5:13 pm

    Unlike a lot of people, I always eat a salad the night before a big race. I try to incorporate more carbs earlier in the week, but I don’t load up on pasta the night before. I don’t like to feel full while I’m running. Enjoy your taper!

  11. March 24, 2012 6:53 pm

    In hindsight from my first half marathon(only) I’d taper for 10~ days while cycling or taking a few spin classes to keep my endurance at peak performance. Definitely something non-impact and preferably indoors. I kind of did that until I got the flu right before…

    I hope your run goes great and you hit the target you’re looking towards. Best of luck!

    Oh, I’m addicted to granola right now =/ not as interesting as froyo.

  12. March 24, 2012 9:24 pm

    oh my gosh I love fro yo too!!! I’m addicted to raw cashews (not roasted) b/c it reminds me of my favorite brazilian cashew wafer candy. I cant eat it anymore because of the wheat 😦

  13. March 24, 2012 10:15 pm

    Living in Phoenix, it’s been a long time since I’ve seen a radar map like that one!

    • March 25, 2012 8:00 am

      Haha I bet! I’ve only been to Phoenix twice, just to the airport where my friend picked me up and we drove to Flagstaff where she went to school, but we ALWAYS stopped at the In N Out!

  14. March 25, 2012 12:47 am

    It is SO good I don’t live near a FroYo. I’d totally be there all the time. And be pleasantly plump.

    …Guess I could be kind of cute pleasantly plump. 🙂

    • March 25, 2012 8:00 am

      pleasantly plump can be very cute, especially if you’re happy because of all the froyo! haha

  15. March 25, 2012 9:08 am

    Im doing a half this coming Saturday and it is supposed to be 50s as well here in PA! Good luck, you will do great!!

  16. Lauren permalink
    March 26, 2012 12:29 pm

    The weather yesterday for Shamrock was perfect running weather. I’m hoping we have the samw for Sunday, I’m running the Chi Town Half too. Well, I assume that’s what you are running! Do you have a goal time?

    • March 26, 2012 12:42 pm

      I am running the Chi Town Half!!! My dream goal time is under 1:50:59, which is what I need to qualify for a corral in the Chicago Marathon, but honestly I don’t see myself hitting that. If I make it under 2 hours I’ll be happy! Feel free to e-mail me if you want to say hi before or after the race (! What’s your goal time?

      • Lauren permalink
        March 29, 2012 12:59 pm

        Oops just saw this! I thought I might get an email if there was a reply haha.

        I was hoping to go with the 2:10 pacers but not I’m worried about the heat!

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