Skyline To The Sea Marathon Training Recap: Week 16

skyline marathon training 16

It’s all over but the shouting now.

With the physically hard part of training done, I have three weeks of tapering to suffer through before race day.

More than anything with marathon tapering, the cumulative mental and physical exhaustion catches up to me and I’m just ready for training to be done.

Read prior week training posts.

skyline marathon training 16

The Plan v. Reality: Week 16

PlanRest5 miles4 miles5 milesRest12 milesCross-Train
ActualRest5 miles4 miles5 milesRest12 mileswalk & rest

Area of Focus



And so the taper begins. I hate marathon taper time. Runs seem so much harder, I notice (and fret over) every sneeze and muscle twinge.

‘What if I get sick or injured now and all the training is for naught?’ I worry.

This, of course, is ridiculous. I live in the Bay Area, there is (at least) one marathon every weekend. The absolute worst case is that I’d register for something else.

It wouldn’t be exactly the same, but close enough.

Not too bad as worst case scenarios go.


My Red Cross CPR certification expires next month, so my plan for the day was to do the classroom portion of my hybrid class this morning (the hybrid class has 2 hours of online learning then 1 hour of practical skills class in-person), then do my run after.

The class was supposed to start at 9, but we didn’t have a teacher. 9:15, nothing. 9:30, 9:45 no teacher.

9:55, the teacher shows up (the class was supposed to end at 10). Those of us who hadn’t bailed were on the phone to the Red Cross trying to reschedule our class. I know I’m the exception in that I’m an excessively prompt person (I was in the classroom at 8:50), but showing up 55 minutes late to an event that is 60 minutes long, seems unreasonable.

In the end, those of us still there (3 of 10 students) took the class and were re-certified, but I got home way later than I expected.

I’m not used to lunchtime runs, but I felt great.

Maybe I should do them more often. Too bad middle of the day runs feel so awkward in how they break up the day.


I’m tapering in distance, but not in hills- which results in views like this… #seenonmyrun

A post shared by Sara Kurth (@puffincoaching) on

I did my usual 4-mile route up into the Piedmont Hills. There are a few elementary schools in the area which have placed crossing guards out at a few major intersections.

I was running at the time of day when some kids were still headed to school so the crossing guards were still out. They did their guarding thing for me too.

It was totally unnecessary, but kind of sweet too.


I know it’s entirely mental and self-created, but the second I hit the marathon taper, I’m totally over it and want nothing more than the race to be done already.

My marathon training success comes from knowing that since the runs get progressively longer and harder, I need to do each run or the whole thing falls apart.

When I’m tapering, that is no longer the case. If I don’t do today’s 5 miles nothing will happen.

That makes it really hard to get out the door.


In true taper style, I’m noticing all sorts of muscle twinges, each causing brief moments of paranoia.

Today I went for a walk and noticed a twinge of something in my foot. My brain immediately jumped to OMG what if it’s a stress fracture or something worse. It isn’t, of course. It’s a normal twinge that happens to everybody nearly every day. It didn’t last more than 3 steps, but that was all it takes.


My long run distance drops off quickly!

20 miles on the calendar last week (I flipped the 20 miler and the Drag-N-Fly half, but still), this week ‘only’ 12 miles.

I am very careful to not think about taper runs as ‘only’ anything (12 miles is still a long run, even if it is shorter than what I have been doing), but it did feel luxuriously short (relatively speaking).


Only morning stretching and a long walk today.

I was going to do a bit more of a hike, but I feel a little bit of a cold maybe coming on (I’m pretty sure it’s a legit cold, not a taper illness paranoia), so I figure it’s best to lay low for the day.

Week Summary

The Red Cross course starting an hour late is the perfect metaphor for my week. Everything ended up happening in the end, just not exactly in the way I expected or planned.

Everything just felt a half step off all week.

Next Week: Week 17


PlanRest4 miles3 miles4 milesRest8 milesCross Train
ActualRest4 miles3 miles4 milesrest8 mileslong walk

Area of Focus

Staying relaxed and healthy

Sara is a runner, running coach, writer, blogger, and a lover of all things written.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge