Whoops, somehow the last 3 weeks came and went with no motivation for blogging. My excitement for training, running, and marathoning has melted somewhere in the never-ending days of 90 degree weather and 80%+ humidity and I’m left feeling just blah about the whole thing.
My paces are way off from where I hoped they’d be. In fact, in comparing them to my training from my first marathon they’re equal to or slightly slower. That summer was hot and humid too so it’s not the weather conditions making a difference. Pretty disappointing since, for me, improvement in pace is a huge motivating factor. After Chicago I didn’t think I wanted to run another marathon. I felt like I’d met my goals of running a marathon, running a sub-4 marathon, and running a marathon after baby #2.
Eventually I did get the itch to run another, but honestly, only if I had a chance at PR’ing. It’s pretty much the only motivating factor for me in running another 26.2 miles – wondering, can I improve upon what I’ve run before? After hitting a big PR in the half marathon this spring I thought a marathon PR was a sure bet this year. I definitely don’t have that confidence now, but I haven’t given up on it either. So what can I do to help me hit that goal?
One of the biggest things I can do for myself it to set myself up with better nutrition. When I was training for my spring half I generally followed the 80/20 rule of eating – making sure 80% of my food had a lot of nutritional value. After my race I definitely started slacking and am probably more at only 50% of my food providing nutritional value. Getting back to an 80/20 split should help with my post-run recovery and fatigue. The other biggest thing I can do is stop making excuses. I’ve quit or slowed down on a lot of speed work, because I just don’t feel like it. I haven’t wanted to be uncomfortable or working hard so I haven’t. I give up and give in. Surprise, surprise, that’s just not going to cut it
Ok, so enough about what I need to start doing and let’s look at what I have done. It hasn’t been all doom and gloom here. We went on vacation, I’ve logged two 18 milers, and even managed 16 mind-numbing miles on the treadmill. Thank goodness for the women’s Olympic marathon and Scandal.
Week 8 Recap: August 15-21
Monday: Plan: 5M Recovery – Actual: 5M @9:33 – After running 16 miles on the treadmill the day before I really wanted to take the day off. Since we were heading on vacation the next day I knew I had to fit it in since me+vacation running never seems to work out.
Tuesday: Plan: 2x (6×400 @1:36) 90 sec RI, 2:30 RI in b/t sets – Actual: 1.25M w/u @9:05, 2x (6×400 @6:49) 90 sec RI, 2:30 b/t sets, .75 c/d @9:31 – These should have been in the 6:13-6:38 pace range, but at 6:38 pace on the treadmill I felt like I was going to trip over my own 2 feet. While I wouldn’t say these felt easy, they were more comfortable than they should be for a speed workout.
Wednesday: off – Instead of running I got to spend the day with this view!
Thursday: Plan: 2M E, 3M @7:23, 1M E – Actual 5M @8:49 – Despite my best of intentions I never seem to get my planned run in on vacation. 5M at moderate pace was all I could convince myself to do.
Friday: Plan: 5M Recovery – Actual: off – Our last day of vacation and after not sleeping well all week, we were all a bit tired and cranky. I had full intentions to run once we got home, but opted to unpack and nap instead.
Saturday: Plan: 18M @8:40 – Actual: 18M @9:04 – For someone who is always tired and loves to sleep, I actually have a really hard time sleeping. (Maybe that’s why I’m always tired!) Thankfully I was meeting a group to run with Saturday morning or I probably would have turned my alarm off, slept in, and then been annoyed with myself for not getting my long run over with. Before heading out I had my morning coffee, sipped some water, and ate a few Honey Stinger Chews. I haven’t been able to stomach a bagel or any real food in the mornings of long runs, but these were easy to take and might be a new strategy for me. There was a big group of us and the miles were going bye fast. It was mile 7 before I remembered that I had meant to take a GU! We ran a few trails that I wouldn’t normally run and chatted away as we ran. Since there was such a big group our water/bathroom stops did take a bit long (my Garmin showed a 15 minute difference between total elapsed time and running time!), but I was introduced to a new water/bathroom stop that has an ice machine. ICE! Grabbing a scoop of cold ice 11 miles into another swampy run was ahhh-mazing! We ran another 3 miles as a group and I finished up my final 5 miles with the plan to run the last 4 as a fast finish. I started off way too aggressive and only managed to get 2 faster paced miles in. I ran my 5 as an out and back and once I stopped to turn around my legs did.not.want.to.go.anymore. It felt like the last few miles of a marathon where your legs feel like they are moving through cement. I questioned why on earth I had signed up for a marathon again. The kicker was when I got back to my car and still had .13 miles to run. I had to run past my glorious air-conditioned car where a full bottle of water and a place to sit were waiting for me and do a small loop around it to round out my 18 miles. Splits: 1) 8:34 2) 9:05 3) 9:12 4) 8:49 5) 9:02 6) 9:42 7) 9:40 8) 9:41 9) 8:58 10) 9:20 11) 9:33 12) 9:20 13) 8:55 14) 9:21 15) 8:24 16) 8:19 17) 8:38 18) 8:46
Sunday: off – For a small amount of time I entertained the idea of making up my 5 easy miles skipped and decided instead to take the extra day off and use this as a cutback week.
Weekly Total: 33 miles
How is your summer running going?
How do you get yourself back on track with training?