Eleven weeks into my "pre-training" regimen and I'm dealing with a few frustrations. Nothing devastating or even demoralizing, but I know they're there.
1) Weight Loss - I've been actively tracking my calorie intake and aiming to keep my daily average 500 calories below what I need just to maintain my weight. Yet I've only lost about four pounds. After a couple of months I was hoping for twice that.
2) Speed - I still feel slow as hell. Tonight was the first time in quite a while that I was close to a 10 minute per mile average, but it's only one run. Overall, my average is much higher and I'm not seeing much improvement.
3) Stamina - Last Saturday's run on the beach was hard. That's evident in my average HR of 158 and a max all the way up to 173. That was at see level or 6000 feet lower than where I usually train.
Dealing with frustration is, of course, a significant part of preparing for any race. The hardest part of training for me has always been the mental aspect. Fear of exhaustion, fear of failure, fear of giving up--they hang out with me before most workouts. Healthy? No. Constructive? Definitely not. But there it is.
So how do I deal with it. Considering none of the above is particularly rational, that's a good place to start.
1) Weight loss will come. But being over 40 means it takes longer.
2) Being slower is kind of inevitable. Though I won't be as fast I was five years ago (probably) I still will improve.
3) Stamina is inevitable too. You can't keep doing this stuff without building up a tolerance for it.
I know I'll struggle with frustration even more (wait till I fall short of one of my goals) but overcoming it is just about as satisfying as finishing a race or getting a PR.