It isn't a secret that the last three marathons were hard. After getting my speed honed for Santa Rosa in August I fully expected the most recent marathons to finish up in the 4:30 time zone. Instead my times drifted into the 4:40+ and I suffered a bit of marathon burnout at the time.
Recovery after Humboldt was slow and tedious. I took an entire week off, a second week of easy short runs, a third week of marathon training plan mileage with no intensity, and then the fourth week tried to follow the program. My legs have been trying to keep up but have been slow to come around.
Just last week I was getting sort of down about how my paces have been lately. But I stopped and realized that in the last month from that day I had run two marathons. Of course my legs were going to be a little off. I keep trying to preach patience to myself but have been getting a little down. This has definitely been the most difficult recovery period of the year. Perhaps a sign of the accumulated fatigue over the last 12 months.
There is still a bit of time before the Texas Marathon on Jan 1, but I am not feeling as PR-chasing as I thought I might at this point. My paces for all types of runs are 10-20 seconds slower than they were when I was Santa Rosa training.
While I'd love to be in shape for a good effort in January I am not opposed to taking the fun approach, either. I'm going to keep on training over here, though. Every week I get a little more zip back and we'll see how this shapes up.