30 All to Real Realities Of Dealing With Taper Madness

The hardest part about running a marathon is training for a marathon. The SECOND hardest part about running a marathon is tapering for a marathon. (OK maybe the second hardest part is running the marathon itself...it's debatable!) Getting ready to taper for an upcoming endurance race? Let me introduce you to a little something I like to call TAPER MADNESS.

In the grips of taper madness? Approaching a taper? Here are 30 of the all to real realities of dealing with taper madness --

  1. You are afraid you'll get sick so walk around with a bottle of purrell and you use your sleeve to open doors.
  2. You're afraid you're going to hurt yourself simply walking so you're overtly safe about everything you do.
  3. You are hesitant to lower your mileage because it doesn't make sense and you question the taper entirely. (IS IT NECESSARY?!)
  4. You don't know what to do with your spare time.
  5. So you spend way to much time online searching for marathon advice.
  6. You try to take up a new hobby but it just stresses you out more.
  7. So instead you try to watch television for the first time in months but end up silently pondering the meaning of life and why you decided to run a marathon in the first place.
  8. You lay awake at night, restless, and thinking about worse case race day scenarios.
  9. Which scares you sh*tless.
  10. And then you start worrying about going to the bathroom on race day.
  11. Which makes you think about your fueling and if you practiced fueling enough.
  12. Then you remember that you're out of energy gels so you go online to buy more.
  13. And then you realize the sun is rising and you once again lost a night's worst of rest because you fell into an internet black hole.
  14. Everywhere you go people ask you if you're excited about your marathon which makesfreaks you out.
  15. Dread washes over you on your extra rest days.
  16. But you feel recovered and you just want to run hard already!
  17. You run further than you're supposed to on your easy run days.
  18. "One little hill repeat session won't hurt..." You think to yourself as you take off for a 3 mile "easy" run.
  19. You find yourself obsessing over every bit of your training.
  20. You scroll through training logs trying to prove to yourself that you're ready.
  21. You start bugging everyone and anyone you know for marathon advice.
  22. But then they ask you what your goal time is and suddenly you fell all this pressure to perform....
  24. And then you start to notice little aches and pains...could you be injured? Is that a stress fracture? Plantar fascitis? Did you develop shin splints overnight?
  25. You start stressing about your diet and what you're eating. "WHEN DO I START CARB LOADING? DO I AVOID CARBS UNTIL THEN?"
  26. You worry about gaining weight.
  27. And what you're going to wear on race day.
  28. And bloody nipples.
  29. And again you start panicking, regretting that you ever decided to run a marathon in the first place.
  30. But then something reminds you why you wanted to run this race in the first place, and everything makes sense. All you have to do is get to race day.

No one is safe from taper madness! Whether it's your first marathon or hundredth marathon, we all go through it! Just trust your training and listen to your training plan! The work is done! Don't push your workouts during your taper and expect some speed bumps! (This morning I rolled my ankle walking to the subway. I'm 11 days away from the Berlin Marathon and I rolled my ankle. Am I stressing? Yes. Is there anything I can do? No. I'm playing "Let It Go" on repeat in my head...and bugging my PT Mike every 15 minutes with panicked emails...I'M ONLY HUMAN!) Listen to your body, give it really delicious health food and just try to keep yourself busy! You can get through it! I believe in you! It's going to be worth it!

Until next time, #RunSelfieRepeat.

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Kelly Roberts

It all started when a silly joke made headlines back in 2014 when I took selfies with hot guys “hottie hunting” my way through the New York City Half Marathon. But ironically enough, I haven't always been a runner. As the self-proclaimed former President of the "I f*cking hate running club", I spent most of my life finding ways to avoid physical activity. Growing up, I missed over 70 days of PE my senior year. Working out was something I thought I had to suffer through in order to lose weight. 

Then, in 2009, my younger brother passed away unexpectedly and struggling to manage my grief, I gained more than 75 pounds. With the weight gain came a new fight to regain my sense of self and learn to love the body I saw when I looked in the mirror. Then one Thanksgiving morning, drowning in grief and self doubt, I decided to go for a run. I didn't make it half way down my street before I had to stop to walk but for some reason, struggling forward made more sense than getting back into bed. It turns out that running is a lot like grief, neither ever really get easier, you just get stronger. 

Over time, I realized that while some people are in fact born runners, others are made. I created this blog Run, Selfie, Repeat and my new podcast by the same name with the hopes to inspire others to say yes to themselves while making them laugh hysterically because laughing, in my opinion, is the solution to everything. 

Named by Women's Running as one of twenty women who are changing the sport of running and by Competitor Magazine as one of 12 Influential and inspiring runners under 30, my mission is to inspire others to get embrace a healthy lifestyle and pursue the strongest version of themselves possible.