With marathon training, I'm finding it more important than ever to have a good system down to make sure that (hopefully) nothing gets left behind during the craziness of life. Here's a couple of things I'm doing to keep everything going:
Prepping for the next day
What I'm working on most right now is getting as much prepped for the next day as possible. The two main things I do the night before are planning out my meals the night before (including packing food for work if needed) and packing my gym bag. This way, I don't have to think as much in the morning and I spend less time running around.
Of course, I still need some work on this. For example, today I forgot to grab sunscreen to put on for my run. Now it's on my grocery shopping list to get a second bottle for my gym bag so it doesn't happen again.
Putting it on the calendar
I am living by my calendar right now (as you'll see in the next couple of things I'm doing). I have six calendars right now that pop up on my phone and it really helps me see what's coming up and what I need to do:
- Meal Planning
- Marathon Training
- Blog Planning
Everything that can go on the calendar does and it keeps me from forgetting what I have coming up. Both my marathon training and blog planning calendars sync from other services (Polar Flow and Todoist) which helps when I have to move something around on one of those it syncs automatically.
I've been doing meal planning for the last three or so years and I've perfected a system for me. I do a big grocery shopping trip once every four or five weeks (for non-perishable items or things that can be frozen) and then once a week for perishable items needed for the week's meals (plus anything else we need). I plot out meals by day for each week and then I can move things around based on what comes up in our lives.
Since it's just the two of us, we're not cooking everyday of the week. Right now, we usually cook meals that take longer on the weekends and then twice during the week. I'm trying to do slow cooker/pressure cooker meals on Tuesdays since Mike works late and I'm running so I need something that's quick to pull together. Thursdays are still pretty simple meals so either Mike or I can make it depending on who gets home first.
Creating a to-do list
Along with living by my calendar, I'm also constantly checking my to-do list. I started using Todoist in January and found it super helpful, especially when it comes to recurring tasks and planning out blog posts. I have three main categories of tasks (Personal, Work and Blog) and it's very easy to see what I need to do each day and what's coming up in the next seven days.
Since I like seeing my upcoming blog schedule on a calendar, I'm so glad Todoist recently added two-way syncing with Google Calendar. I can move upcoming blog posts (or when I'm going to write them) around on my calendar and it updates on Todoist. It also helps when planning out upcoming blog posts to see what I have going on in the rest of my life that might influence topics (or when I can get posts written)
Having a supportive spouse
The most helpful thing I have going on is how supportive Mike is not only of my marathon training but helping me keep everything going. Not only is he taking care of Vinnie more since I'm out running (which is easier now that he's out of his puppy stage and loves cuddling) but he's also coming along with me on some runs. This Saturday, we're doing our first run/bike ride tomorrow so Mike can get ready to bike along the Twin Cities Marathon course as I run!
He's also great about be willing to cook so I can get my run in (or nap after my weekend runs) and not being upset when I get tired earlier in the day from a long run. Which is amazing right now because food and sleep are high priories for me during marathon training. He's been like this since I got serious with my running but it's just awesome right now to not have to worry about everything in my life all the time.
What (or who) helps you keep everything going while your training for a race?