Decisions, Decisions…


Mile 9 at the Wineglass Marathon

 I may be running another marathon in 9 weeks. 

After thinking about my race and talking things over with my coach, it may be a good idea for me to try again with a shortened cycle to capitalize on my current fitness level and not have to go through a full marathon cycle again. I’m already signed up for the Kiawah Island half marathon on December 12, and it’s possible for me to switch to their full marathon instead. I’ll be doing a half marathon in Florida on November 29 (and then cheering on/pacing to the finish my volunteer coaching client to finish her first marathon), and I talked to my husband about us potentially staying in Florida for the intermediate two weeks so I can acclimate to warmer temps. 

It could work. 

Reflecting back on my race, I’m pretty sure I experienced the dread “bonk” or “hitting the wall” in the marathon due to not nailing my nutrition right. I hadn’t realized how little of my UCAN I’d drunk in the first half until after the race my husband told me I’d underfueled. When my legs got so heavy and clumsy, I didn’t have the wherewithal to understand what was happening and was a little foggy in the head at that point. I could’ve taken an emergency Gu or drank some Gatorade on the course if my brain hadn’t been also experiencing the bonk. Even if those upset my stomach, I know I can run a little nauseated for a handful of miles. 

After a few days of short runs and plenty of sleep, I’m eager to get back to training. My biggest hesitancy about jumping back into marathon mode is not overdoing things but rather a general fear of falling short again. That’s not really a great reason to not try again, especially if it will be easier on my body to just ramp things up now rather than wait until next year. If I wait until next year, Wineglass will definitely be my race of choice. All around, it was my favorite of the four marathons I’ve done and one of the better races I’ve participated in, period. 

I truly had a great run at Wineglass all the way up to when I bonked. Even the photos my husband took of me as I was fading, I look pretty happy and my running form hadn’t crumbled. 

I don’t have to decide right this second. But I know I have a BQ of at least a 3:52 in me. I was on track all the way up to mile 21. But am I mentally ready?

Advice — yay or nay?


around mile 3


very focused at mile 9


i think mile 20


mile 24?


The finish line the night before


not a great look at the finish line


19 thoughts on “Decisions, Decisions…

  1. I want to say, “Yay! Do it! You’re up to it!” but that would be irresponsible of me considering how little I know about running. So, I’ll pass along advice I was given for “everything” in life: What’s the worst that could happen to you if you do it? If you don’t actually lose anything, then why not see what happens?

  2. Depends on your willingness, but you have the fitness already, seems a shame to waste it by taking too much time of or cutting down on mileage. I’d go for keeping it going.

  3. I would say ‘plan for YES’! … but see how you’re doing after going through the half on Nov 29th. You can still run the full marathon, but make sure you feel ready to give a full BQ effort. That is 11+ weeks between marathons, and should be good.

    But of course – remember to be safe … my mantra is that nothing is worth an injury 🙂

    As for you pics – love them! Yes to you questions: Northside Blodgett school is right by the 24-mile point and the 20 mile pic looks like ‘Victory Highway’ by the movie theater we went to last month. 🙂

    • Thank you for ID’ing those last couple course photos. I was a little fuzzy at that point, so I wasn’t sure of the landmarks.

      I’m definitely planning for a YES. I’m feeling good so far and have some more recovery jogs this week. Injury is sooooo not worth it, but I’m going to do whatever it takes to keep myself healthy. Hopefully I’ll be in the sweet spot in December and just have to do better on my nutrition.

  4. Karen @ runningfifty says:

    I’m not speaking with any personal training knowledge but if you are up for it I think it sounds like a great plan! Good luck with whatever you decide.I love the photos.

  5. I would go for it 🙂 but that’s just me. As for fueling, it really depends on how you deal with heat, sweating, specific calories, but as for electrolytes, I think base salts are something all marathoners should try – all your electrolytes at your fingertips. Of course you need nutrition, calories, sugar, all that, but that is one thing I learned that helped me deal with the heat, humidity, and sweating no matter how cold it is. It’s always good to remember that you can’t make up for nutrition. Make a plan and be sure you do it, even if you’re not feeling it, because if you get in a deficit while you race, you can’t make those calories up at once. Anyway, go for it, I know I’m going for my BQ only two months after my Ironman!!!

    • Great advice! I know you learned some of that nutrition stuff the hard way. I wish I’d bonked in training or a lesser race first! I’m a super salty sweater, so I do take some salt pills. But I really got behind in my carb/calorie intake, and like you said, you can’t make it up once you’ve blown it.

      I forgot you’re going for another BQ after the Ironman. Good grief, Ironman is one helluva training run for a BQ!

  6. My advice is YAY. But, I’ve also run two marathons in a one week span several times…I think I did that three times. I bet you rock the one in 9 weeks because Wineglass will just be a long run in the training for the next one!! Do it!!!! Do it!!! I know that feeling like you have more in you and need to try again – I’m there right now. Luckily, I get to try again in 4 weeks 🙂 DOOOO ITTT!

  7. Having only run my first marathon two days ago, I may not be the best to offer advice, but the logic seems sound – and if you have your trainer helping you through, I’m sure you can totally pull it off! Just make sure to listen extra close to whatever your body tells you. For what it’s worth, I’m trying to decide if I can squeeze another 26.2 in in 6 weeks, also to take advantage of the existing training cycle.

    • I really enjoyed your race report! Sounds like you had a great time… just as a first marathon should be!

      My coach said she recommended 8-10 weeks between marathons, but if you felt like you didn’t go all out in your race, you can probably shave off a couple weeks. I think it all depends on how well you recover and rest the next two weeks. What race are your u thinking of doing?

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