After coming home from Babcock Lake and competing in the Steelman Triathlon last Sunday, I took a look at what I had planned for this week. I thought it would be a good idea to run a half marathon the week after Steelman – in theory, it’s a great idea. But it meant another week of front-loading miles if I didn’t want to taper for it – which I definitely didn’t. This was not my goal half marathon and is extremely hilly, so I was using it as a hard training run and went into the run with no pace expectations. With all of this in mind, my goals for the week were:
- Pacing: Keep pace on all runs slow and easy – everything on the slower end of the prescribed pace range
- Terrain: Since I ran hills all last week and had a hilly half coming up, run some flats to let my legs recover
- Cross-Training: Minimal biking and swimming since the triathlon is over – would be unnecessary fatigue this week
As for the cross training, I am not giving up on biking and swimming by any means. With the way my week was panning out, I didn’t want to bike towards the end of the week since it was close to the race and tends to tire out my legs. After my disastrous swim at the tri, I wasn’t too excited to get in the pool anyway.
Monday, 8/10 – 18 Mile Long Run + Yin Yoga/Core
I woke up with the intention of doing my long run but not sure how it would go. It was rainy and dreary, and I was a little sore from the triathlon the previous day. Somehow I got myself motivated to leave the house and I drove to a flat trail in the area. All I did was run hills the previous week so I figured I might as well enjoy the flats while recovering. It was an uneventful run – once I warmed up, I felt tired and had no drive to push myself to run harder, but I felt good considering what I did the day before. It was my goal to be on the slower side of my McMillian long run pace range, which is 7:18-8:33. While this was not my fastest long run to date, it was successful. Overall, I ran the second half much faster than the first half so it was somewhat of a progression. I say somewhat because every single mile was not a perfect progression, but overall I was slower in the beginning (8+ minutes per mile) and faster on the second half (under 8 minute miles). I also was able to manage a fast finish mile at a 7:24 pace. Overall pace for the run, 8:09. After the previous week and the tri the day before with a 10K PR, I was more than happy with this run and how it unfolded.
Normally, I’d head to the gym and lift or do an hour on my bike but I went home and did drills, MYRTLs, abs, and yin yoga. I figured if I wasn’t able to take the day off because of the upcoming half marathon, I would at least cut out any extra, unnecessary cross training. I posted this link in my yoga post last week, but this was the stretch I did post run:
Yin Yoga for Hips
Tuesday, 8/11 – 6 Mile Recovery Run + Pole Fitness + Strength/Core + Yin Yoga
Enter the fatigue. NOW I was feeling tired and sore for SURE! I was happy for the delayed onset since I already got my long run done the day before. I went to the Plainfield trail for another flat run, and kept it in my recovery range (8:20-9:01). It felt really hard, but I figured the past week weeks were going to catch up with me at some point. Overall pace, 8:50. Easy means easy.
Pole class was rough and I didn’t accomplish much of anything, so I headed to the gym. I changed a few things up with my lifting routine this week. As my weekly run mileage continues to climb, I’m not feeling as motivated to go and do the current full body routine that I do. Between arms, legs, abs, and the PT exercises I do, it takes upwards of two hours. As the new school year approaches, I know I won’t have that kind of time (or motivation) while running long miles. I use my Nike Training Club app for abs pretty often, so I turned to their full body workouts. I completed a 30 minute speed drill session – Zoom Fast – with all kinds of speed drills for runners and a 30 minute full body routine. I liked it, and I’m going to keep playing around with the app and still incorporate my current routine every so often to keep it fresh. I finished up the day with this yin yoga session (also one I posted last week):
Yin Yoga for Hips and Thighs
Wednesday, 8/12 – Ladder Interval Workout + Recovery Run + Core + Pole Fitness
I didn’t know I was running the upcoming half when I planned my schedule out, but I couldn’t have picked a more perfect track workout for the week. I modified the warm up and cool down to shorten the workout and accommodate the recovery run (it was the day I ran with David Willey at Runner’s World) but the actual interval work itself went exactly as planned. It’s a shorter track workout and it comes from my Run Faster From the 5K to the Marathon book. It’s a shorter track workout that I’ve always really enjoyed. It’s a warm up, then your intervals are 1, 2, 3, 2, 1, 2, 3 minutes at 3K-10K pace with equal duration active recoveries. I ran a mile to warm up, and then my interval paces were as follows:
- 1 minute – 6:10 pace
- 2 minute – 5:54 pace
- 3 minute – 5:50 pace
- 2 minute – 5:41 pace
- 1 minute – 5:26 pace
- 2 minute – 5:54 pace
- 3 minute – 5:55 pace
I know they were short distances, but I never had so many intervals under a 6 minute pace in my life – and they didn’t feel awful! Since these are short intervals (3 minutes is about an 800 for me, and there were only two of those), I told myself to run “comfortably hard”. I expected to be closer to 10K pace (my shiny new 6:16/mile PR!), but was pleasantly surprised that faster felt comfortable. The only reason I didn’t have a fast finish was because I was using the track at Lehigh University, and one of the sports teams showed up and started doing something right at the end. They didn’t kick me off, but for the last two intervals I used the other half of the track and just ran back and forth for a 200 meter stretch until the interval was over. It was hard to get my pace faster since I had to keep turning around, but I didn’t care. I didn’t want to be in the way and I’m so fortunate to live so close to a track that is open to the public, and I would never want to jeopardize that.
I did run my warm up and cooldown super slow, and I walked my recoveries so my overall pace for the run was 8:45. It’s all about the intervals. I did drills, MYRTLs, and core at home while waiting for Kathy to come pick me up and head over to Runner’s World. I didn’t know how far we were going to run when we went to Runner’s World, but I’d assumed anywhere from 3-7 miles. I’d hoped to be around 4 miles, we did 5. Perfect. You can read all about my day at Runner’s World and our run here. Overall pace, 8:30. We unintentionally did this run as a progression run, starting around a 9 minute pace and our final mile being a 7:32, meaning we also managed a fast finish!
That night, I joined my friends at pole class. I expected to feel pretty jacked up and accomplish nothing, but we we worked on a pose called Sea Monkey and I was able to get both variations of it:
Thursday, 8/13 – 12 Mile Medium Long Run + Strength/Core + Yin Yoga
I had zero desire to do this run. I was so angry about it for some reason. I already decided early in the week that I would keep this run on the slower side of my general aerobic range (7:14-8:14) but I still didn’t want to do it. I considered skipping it – I mean, I could really justify making this week a recovery week with the way I beat myself up the past two weeks and the upcoming half marathon. I resolved to go to the same trail I ran on Monday and just start running – maybe cut it short but not completely skip it. Once I got started, I won’t say I felt awesome by any means, but it wasn’t really bad until the last three miles. I was ready to be DONE. I had run out and back on one section of the trail and was approaching my car around mile 10 and it literally took every single fiber of my being not to run to my car and drive home. I sucked it up and finished with a fast finish mile, 7:27. Overall pace was 8:01. Right where I wanted to be, but it was absolute torture.
I headed to the gym and did drills, MYRTLs, a quick Nike Circuit for arms, and abs. I headed over to my massage therapist for a MUCH needed massage. I don’t get to go very often, but I really needed it this week. I didn’t care about the upcoming half – I told her to get in there and fix me! Usually, if I go to her pre-race it’s more of a gentle massage to flush everything out. Since I wasn’t tapering for this race, I didn’t want her to treat the massage as a pre-race massage. It felt glorious.
Later that night, I did a 45 minute yin yoga practice. Might be my favorite one yet:
Yin Yoga for a Deep Stretch
Friday, 8/14– 2300 Meter Swim + Strength/Core + Yin Yoga
I slept in and was tempted to take a rest day, but I only have one more week left to enjoy the summer so when I finally felt like moving, I headed to the gym. Felt surprisingly good in the pool, and did a Nike circuit plus abs and physical therapy. Headed home and did two yin yoga sessions since my legs were still feeling pretty jacked up:
1 Hour Full Class
Yoga for Runners – Getting into the IT band (not Yin, I just really like this instructor’s classes and decided to check it out – plus it’s only 16 minutes long!)
Saturday, 8/8 – 4 Mile Run + Abs + Yin Yoga
I slept in and woke up whenever my body felt ready and made some Paleo waffles for breakfast! Met Emily at the Parkway for an easy shakeout run. We walked about a half mile before and after starting the run, which was really nice – especially since I took the day off of running the day before. We kept the pace comfortable and easy, 8:36. After our run, we headed back to my house to sit by my pool and do some abs and yin yoga (another link I’ve shared before):
Yin Yoga for Runners – Hips and Hamstrings
Sunday, 8/9 – Perk Up Half Marathon + Yin Yoga
Race report coming soon…spoiler alert:
And then this, which was much needed:
Yin Yoga for a Deep Stretch (same one from earlier this week)…with lots of props to ease into deep stretches:
Lots of long/slow miles, some speed/races, and yoga this week! I’m glad I raced Steelman and Perk Up, but I’m glad I don’t have any other races on the schedule until September. I need a few weeks where I don’t have to organize my workouts to accommodate a race so I can also do some real speed work, and run some marathon paced miles on my long run. Overall, I’m happy with the way things went this week and my miles are steadily creeping up!
Swim: 2300 meters ♥ Bike: 0 miles ♥ Run: 63 miles
How was your week? Run any races? Good long runs to tell me about?