The word that comes to mind lately when I think of marathon training is "relentless." Each day brings another training run, and each week increases the intensity and total miles ever so slightly. It doesn't matter if I've had a long day at work, if I got little sleep the night before, or if I haven't eaten properly. The next scheduled training run arrives whether I'm ready or not, and the miles just keep on piling up, day after day after day.
For the most part I like it like this. I like the intensity, the feeling of accomplishment, the sense of challenging myself when it would be so easy to stay inside all winter.
But as every marathoner knows, there are some pretty dark moments in every training cycle when I seriously question why this is my hobby.
But as with anything in life, there are pros and cons, ups and downs, strikes and gutters, and if the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, then maybe it is all worth it. Right now the parts are made up mostly of cold, darkness, sweaty clothes, and even some doubt. But lodged somewhere in there is still a healthy dose of excitement for marathon weekend in April, and when it's all said and done and I can finally examine the whole, I'm sure it will all be worth it.