Marathon Training for Winos, Lazies, and People Who Hate to Run

Me and my running buddies

My best friend Shannon has this frustratingly positive effect on me. Following her lead, I’ve adopted some annoying and time consuming habits over the years – flossing nightly, wearing SPF bazillion sunscreen even indoors and worst of all…running. In fact, she tricked me into running both a full, and then another half, marathon in 2008 when I could barely eek out a mile without wheels on. She’s lucky I keep her around.

Since then, I managed to survive a few years run-free and turned to other, more enlightening activities like wine tasting, cupcake baking, and couch potatoing. But just last month, Shannon used her healthy ESP to convince me to run another race. So in January, I shall be one of thousands of women donning a lime green fairy getup at the Tinkerbell Half Marathon at Disneyland (insert magical tinkling noise here).

But on the inside, I’m just a girl who loves to watch TV, drink wine, eat chocolate-laced goodies, sleep late and do absolutely anything else that doesn’t require thirteen miles of sweaty panting. So if you’re like me and can grasp the merits of running a marathon in theory but have no intention of trading in your Cabernet for Gatorade, here are some potentially inspirational tidbits that helped me make the leap:

Wine is recommended: There are many milestones involved in marathon training – the first time you complete a long run without stopping, the first time you clock your fastest mile, the first time you get a chafing rash on your inner thighs – these moments must be celebrated. Rule of thumb: your ounces of wine per week should directly correlate to your mileage.

You get to play with toys: It was essential that I buy myself a new iPod, Garmin heart rate monitor and a Fitbit in order to properly train – just like the cavemen used to do.

You’ll get lots of pedicures: Long running stints equal swollen feet, calluses, and bruised toenails. Your feet will need lots of love. Tip well.

Snacks are now called “fuel”: You’re burning about 100 calories per mile (80ish after you account for the wine). This deficit can be used for all kinds of fun things. My running group swears that gummy bears, peanut butter filled pretzels, cookies and granola bars are all appropriate training “fuel” and have them waiting at the end of every long run.

Laziness is required: Every Friday my little running schedule says “rest day.” I take this day very seriously. This is a day for elevators, pizza delivery, and twist off wine bottles.

It’s for a cause: Whether or not you can get your race mojo going, running for others is always inspiring. I’m running with Team in Training to raise money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Pick a cause that matters to you so when you’re exhausted after an eight-miler, your toenails are black, and someone just ate the last gummy bear, you’re still on a runner’s high.

I’d love to hear any tips you have to stay motivated!

About WhiteElephantInTheRoom

I'm an 80s music lover, traveling junkie, mac & cheese connoisseur, amateur wine snob, party-planning priestess and Chicago transplant living in Southern California. I find adventure in the everyday and have a unending compulsion to write about it. Hope you enjoy reading my mind!
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22 Responses to Marathon Training for Winos, Lazies, and People Who Hate to Run

  1. I’ve retired from running, but I may dabble in it again now that you gave me the OK to put wine in a Camelbak. (you did that, right?)

    Best o luck on the run! Are you going as Tinkerbell or one of her friends – Glimmer, Periwinkle, or Chloe? Don’t ask how I know they exist…

  2. Katie says:

    Good tips! I’m trying to build up my tolerance for running. It’s coming along… Slow and steady.

  3. I’m starting my journey in running and been having a hard time finding motivation. It’s interesting that you mentioned TNT because I have been looking into joining. Oh and I LOVE wine too. You seem like someone who can understand me. =)

  4. paywindow7 says:

    I have always enjoyed your posts and in the past I felt that it was, somehow, my responsibility to comment with some smartass response that you have always fielded in the same good humor that mine was intended. Today is different. Simply put, I admire and congratulate you for your participation in the running event you have identified. Not only because it’s a very worthy cause, which it is, but because you and your running mates are doing yourselves a great service that is going to become more and more evident as you (gasp) get older. Me, I’m ancient, with health issues that are not important here. What is important is that I can tell you from experience that physical activity, good ‘ol strenuos heart pumping activity, is the best way to continue an active lifestyle when you are (second gasp here) ancient like myself. I have friends who have been dedicated couch potatoes over the years, some smugly so, that are now house bound. I’ve been a gym rat for many years and loved to travel. I still can. So keep on keepin’ on.

  5. MaximumWage says:

    finished my first half in 2011, I think I’ll stick with halves from now on. NO full marathons for me. My knees wont like it.

  6. chinosolo says:

    I’m king of the rest days.

  7. David says:

    I’m in the i Hate to rin category…:) I was wondering if you could check out my blog. Come and see a kid’s view on all things baseball. Feel free to offer any advice and to pass it along.


  8. Julie Cooper says:

    Ha! I super love this post! So many benefits to running!

  9. nancyfrancis says:

    Oy vay.. I have a similarly influential ‘friend’. After claiming that I would never run either than if it was towards the fridge to get a beer, or away from something chasing me – I’ve completed three 5k races, run 10k a few times (not in a sanctioned race however) and have an 8k race tomorrow morning. at 9am on a Saturday. What. The. Hell.

  10. hey waitress!! says:

    I LOVE THIS POST. I’m planning on running a half marathon before I turn 30. Right now I’m working on the CouchTo5k plan, then 10k version, then a half marathon! I also love “fuel” AKA wine and baked goods!!

  11. I would find the prospect of running in a lime green getup under the moniker “Tinkerbell” uber-motivational! My one tip would be go easy on the pixiedust at first.

  12. Jill (Gunkel) Bell says:

    From one runner to another . . . I love pampering myself with body massages. Of course some of them become a little more painful depending on the “long run days” – they are an absolute must to keep the mind & body on the same team. Best of luck to you!! I’ll be in the Chicago Rock n’ Roll Half again in July . . . I’m looking forward to hearing about your race experience with this one . . . I could very easily be convinced to try a Florida half next year! 🙂

  13. Torri Carroll says:

    So, I just roped my sister, 2 coworkers, and my best friend into doing a marathon with me, relay style. Working my way up to a half, then a full marathon. But tomorrow is my rest day, and you can bet that I enjoyed the pizza I had tonight, along with the late night tv and extra hour of sleep tomorrow. I’m really good at training!! At least, I’m really good at the rest days and “fueling” my body…

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  15. Hazel says:

    Great post, I too was roped into this running malarkey by my good friend who entered us into a charity 10k. 18 months later we’re still at it and enjoying ‘wine night’ where we sit and talk and plan out runs, I love #smugsaturday after our long runs. I even love our long runs as its a chance to gossip for longer. Most of all I love the fact that I’ve got my own back and entered us into the Nice to Cannes marathon in November! That’ll teach her…. Gulp and me …

  16. Pingback: Amateur Wine Snobbery: Tasting Room Edition | White Elephant in the Room

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