So a few weeks ago, I posted about how I know when I’m hitting my training stride… and now I have hit the “is it time to run the marathon yet?” part of my training. It is kind of funny how after running five marathons, I can tell where I am at in my training plan based on how I am feeling.

Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoy my running… but I feel like my body is like “OK, I’ve done enough of these training runs — let’s just hit the real deal!” I think part of it is from being tired and another part of it is from just being ready to go.

This morning was a recovery five miler around the park. It was a little cool this morning, but it was pleasant to run in with two shirts on. My legs are tired and sore though, not sure if it is from my 20 miler on Saturday or if its from adventuring around the city yesterday. Either way, the recovery run was much needed.

I remember the first marathon I trained for, I really didn’t get the point of a recovery run. It was like, “why in the world should I do such a slow run when I feel fine?” but these are so essential to your training. Even if your muscles don’t feel tired or sore, it is important to give them somewhat of a rest day in order for your muscles to recover internally — especially if you recently finished a longer run.

And, this recovery run kicks off a week of easy running — phew. It coincides nicely with the holidays, too. I have my last 20 miler on New Year’s Eve — what a great way to end a great year [posting a 2011 summary post in a couple of days… stay tuned!].

What do you think about recovery runs? Do you have a hard time sticking with the “slow” pace?

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