Back to the grind! Last week’s recovery week with reduced mileage and intensity was much needed and really left me feeling fresh and ready for a new week. My poison oak finally stopped itching, and my feet were able to get into sneakers without band-aids on my gnarly blister from the trail race. That alone was a success! I’d been feeling mediocre for the past few weeks so this week was a big confidence booster.
Monday, 7/27 – 11 Mile Run w/10×10 Second Hill Sprints (.5 miles) + Strength/Core
I headed out a little too late in the day but did 11 miles plus some hills. Nothing too crazy, just a nice aerobic run that felt good. Kept the pace comfortable, and my iPod died in the first mile. I was pleasantly surprised that I didn’t miss it too much! Overall pace, 7:48. Competed some nice hill sprints on a hill I never thought to tackle right at the end of the run and felt pretty strong. Did some drills and MYRTLS, then headed to the gym but just lifted arms and abs. I knew what I had on tap for Tuesday and needed to save some energy.
Tuesday, 7/28 – 9 Mile Tempo Run w/4 Miles @ Half Marathon Pace + Pole Fitness + 25 Mile Ride + Core It was hot and humid, and I headed out way too late AGAIN. I have no reason not to be out running before the sun and humidity get stupid, but I keep sleeping too late and enjoying my coffee from my couch for a little too long. Summer will be over soon and school will begin, leaving little opportunity for sleeping in and just lounging around, so I can’t get too mad at myself. I started running by 9am and was a little concerned that things wouldn’t go so well…but I had a great run! It was another situation where I needed to use a race pace, but I haven’t raced a half in years. My half marathon PR is from 2010 – I haven’t raced one since and I’m gearing up for two of them right now. In 2010, I ran a 1:35, which was something like a 7:17 pace. The McMillan calculator basically gives me a range of 6:45-7:02 as my likely half marathon pace, so my goal was to see how many tempo miles I could hit under a 7 minute pace since that’s what I want to try to do for the second half marathon that I’m racing this fall. If I were a sub-3 hour marathoner, my half marathon pace would be predicted to be around 6:32, which is too aggressive right now. Going into the run, I decided if I felt decent for the first three tempo miles then I’d I’d try just one mile at the more aggressive pace. I’m really, really trying to run the paces that I’m capable of to ensure that I don’t injure myself or burn out, but every so often I like to up the ante. The run was a success! Everything was a negative split – even my warm up and cool down, which I didn’t realize until the run was over! I was thrilled: Overall pace, 7:11! Where was THAT over the past few weeks?! I headed to pole class to meet my friends right after that, and it was ROUGH since I was beat but I still had fun, and I was able to walk away with one new trick – Butterfly Pose (yes, that’s all dried up poison oak from last week and bruises from pole class all over my legs – EW!): i I promised my friend, Amy, who is a super speedy runner suffering from a calcaneous stress fracture right now, that I would bike with her. It was so hot and I was so ready to just sit by my pool and relax, but I know what being injured is like alllll too well. I know when people cross train with me during those times, it means a lot because one of the things I love about running is the community of friends I’ve made and their support. So, I grabbed a smoothie and we had a great ride – I’m talking my best ride this year. We covered 25 miles and averaged 17.4 mph! I don’t know if I’ve ever averaged over 17 mph on a training ride. I can usually ride somewhere around 18 mph (depending on the distance) in a triathlon, but I never see 17 on training rides. No idea where that came from. Since I was already worn out, I went home and did some drills, MYRTLs, and abs before finally floating in the pool. It was an awesome day and exactly what I needed after the past few weeks of rocky running.
Wednesday, 7/29 – 23 Mile Bike, 5 Mile Transition Run + Strength/Core + Pole Fitness Got out a little earlier and ended up getting in a solid transition workout. I headed out on my bike, did a decently hilly loop and was able to hang with a 16 mph average for the ride. I’ve been feeling a lot better on my bike – though wish I had some time for some longer rides. It tires out my legs for my runs, and that’s what I really want to focus on this summer. Headed out for my five mile transition/recovery run immediately after. Since it was scheduled to be a recovery run, I kept it in my recovery range and managed a fast finish mile. Overall pace, 8:20. Did some MYRTLs and drills, then headed to the gym so I could just lift legs and abs. After a nice relaxing afternoon by the pool with friends, we headed to pole class for the evening. It was a rough class – I was pretty tired and just added more bruises to my legs and arms instead of actually accomplishing anything! It was fun to hang with my friends anyway.
Thursday, 7/30 – 5 Mile Hill Run + 2000 Meter Swim + Pole Fitness + Core/Yin Yoga Another early morning because I wanted to be done running and swimming before headed to pole class at 10:15. I ran the Honeysuckle Hill run that I did last week:
It’s 925 feet of climbing over 5 miles, and the half I just signed up for is 900 feet over 13 miles. I feel like this is a good workout, though I never push the pace on this hill run. I try to focus on running steady on the uphill, and then letting myself go on the downhill. Not sprinting the downhill, just working on not putting on the breaks and letting gravity do it’s thing. I felt more comfortable this week, but I was definitely fatigued when I began the run. Overall pace, 9:12. Headed right to the pool but only had time for 2000 meters. I felt kind of crappy swimming, but I wasn’t too worried. I’ll be on vacation at our lake house next weekend and will open water swim almost everyday. It felt good to loosen things up in the water. Even though I’ve only really been swimming once per week over the past few weeks, it’s better than past summers. I hate swimming inside when it’s so nice outside that I usually stop swimming during the summer altogether. Just the fact that I’ve been making it to the pool is a step in the right direction.
I was so stiff and sore and had no idea how I would handle pole class, but those are the days when you surprise yourself! Got two new tricks that I’ve been working on for a little while now, though the one on the right is definitely still a work in progress:
Came home and forced myself to do a little core. I know with being on vacation next week I’ll slack in that department!
Friday, 7/31– 15 Mile Run w/8@Marathon Pace + Strength/PT/Core I was really nervous about my run because 8 miles at marathon pace means about a 7:05 pace- faster if I’m trying to break 3 hours. But, let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. I haven’t done much speed in this block yet so it scared me to have to hold 8 miles at that pace. I figured I could do 4-5 at that pace but I had no idea if I could hold it for longer at this point. I ended up going somewhere a little flatter to run to have a better chance at being successful. I have plenty of long runs with no pace goals that I can do on the hills and wanted a good confidence booster. I didn’t mind going a little faster if I felt good because I knew the following week of running will be a slower one since I’m on vacation. I felt awesome and my run was a success!! Overall pace, 7:22! What!!! I was thrilled, and began to wrap up a productive week. Did some drills and some MYRTLs, then headed to the gym to do strength, core and PT since I won’t be able to lift on vacation. I was on cloud nine!
Saturday, 8/1 – 11.1 Mile General Aerobic Run + Swim + Yoga/Core
My goal was to get out for a run with no pace goals. It’s super hilly here and every run averages some sick elevation gains. I had the 15 miler the day prior so I expected a struggle. I felt surprisingly decent but was pretty fatigued by the end of the run – I spent the whole afternoon napping on a raft on the lake! Managed a pretty fast finish mile anyway, and my overall pace was a 7:46. Followed it up with some drills, MYRTLS, and Summer Shandy!
Sunday, 8/2 – 1.1 Mile Open Water Swim + Core + Yoga
Ahhhh, slept in on vacation and did zero running!!! That felt awesome. I was actually really sore and needed it. Once I had some coffee and breakfast, I unrolled my yoga mat and and did about 20 minutes of abs, and this awesome yin yoga video to stretch my achy legs:
Once the weather warmed up, I zipped up my wetsuit and swam the entire length of the lake, 1.1 miles in 31 minutes:
Swim: 3700 meters ♥ Bike: 47 miles ♥ Run: 56.6 miles
Felt great to hit that kind of mileage this week and feel strong. I’ve felt pretty rough in the three weeks before this one and really needed a week where running felt good! I know I have a week of running at the lake house ahead of me so I expect to slow down a bit, but it will be productive regardless since it’s going to be all about the hill training.
How was your week? Have any really good runs or workouts that boosted your confidence?