For some reason song lyrics always come to my head when I sit down to write. My alternate title for this post was going to be “I got 99 problems, but a treadmill ain’t one”. 99 being the number of minutes I spent on my treadmill yesterday logging my long run. A new longest distance treadmill record for me, but when this ———> is what your weather app has for the temperature outside, the choice is pretty easy. Shorts, a tank top, and my treadmill it was!
Last week I briefly mentioned that after much thinking and little action I had finally signed up for a goal half-marathon. The 3 I had my sights on were: the Newburyport River Run 1/2, Boston’s Run to Remember , and the Horseneck Half. Newburyport and Horseneck had the advantage of being new courses for me, and supposedly beautiful courses at that. Horseneck was the least expensive of the 3 at $55, and the Run to Remember the most expensive at $85. The Run to Remember had the distinct advantages of being by far the closest race to me, the earliest start time (7am vs 9am), and having real bathrooms with a place to wait indoors before the race. So what was holding me back from registering? The cost and the fact that there is some serious bottlenecking for the first 1-2 miles of the race. In the end, convenience, real bathrooms, and a chance of avoiding end of May heat with an early start time won out, and I registered for the Run to Remember. This week put me at the start of my 16 week Run Less, Run Faster training plan, but since I’d already started following it awhile I ago I adjusted some of the runs rather than starting over at week 1 or jumping ahead to week 11.
Weekly Training: February 8 -14
Monday: Gym – This week I remembered to document my gym time so I’m actually sure that I made it. 45 minutes of strength and stretching
Tuesday: Since I had originally planned for a March or April half-marathon my training this week would have been RLRF’s week 11, so I decided to modify it the workout. 2x400m @ 7:24, 800m @7:30, 1600m @7:47 and then back down again. I decided to try again at RLRF’s recommended paces for these distances and was feeling the extra work. The 1600 pace felt comfortable, but the others were really pushing it. I ended up skipping my last 400, because I was fried by that point. Overall I ran 6 total miles at 9:10 average.
Wednesday: Plan: 6M Easy – Actual: 6M @9:29 – This run felt a bit labored, probably still tired from my run the day before. I should have eased off pace a bit to make it truly an easy run, but I wanted to get it over as quickly as possible.
Thursday: Plan: 1M Easy, 5M Mid Tempo, 1M Easy – Actual: 1M @9:33, 5M @8:35, 1M @9:28 – My mid-tempo paced miles felt really comfortable the whole way through. They felt so much easier than my run the day before, even though they were faster.
Friday: Gym – 40 minutes of strength & stretching
Saturday: off (aka the day I should have run so I could have done it outside) Really what I should have done was head to the gym so I could have
watched geeked out over the Olympic Trials Marathon while I fit in my own run on the treadmills. I looove Des Linden and Meb Keflezghi, and was so happy to see them make the Olympic team. They both seem so genuinely nice. Watching Amy Cragg, the women’s winner, and Shalane Flanagan, who clinched the 3rd spot, work together was so inspiring. Shalane was clearly in bad shape the last few miles and looked like she was lost at times. You could see that Amy, was concerned for her and kept checking on her, even grabbing and opening water for Shalane to dump on her head. I read afterwards that Amy kept telling Shalane to just get to the next mile or the next aid station where they could get water and she would feel better. That she slowed to stay with Shalane and talk her through it, only taking off when she could see Des closing in behind them, was such a nice sign of friendship in a competitive sport. It was interesting to watch how each of the competitors raced and what they do to motivate themselves. Des and Jared Ward (the 3rd place finisher for the men), both spoke about how at times there was a break away that was too fast for them and they had to be confident in their own pace and race strategy – which clearly paid off. Jared, who teaches statistics, wrote his master’s thesis on optimal marathon pacing and ran splits of 1:06:31 the first half and 1:06:29 the second half! That is impressive consistency!
Sunday: Again, I didn’t feel the need to run 14 miles this early in training for a half, so I modified it to 11 miles. 2 episodes of Scandal + 15 minutes of Making of a Murderer got me through this run!
Weekly Total: 30 miles