Goodbye 2016, Hello 2017!

And just like that 2016 is over.

img_0231

With one final run on December 31st, I finished off the last 7 miles I needed to hit 1500 miles for the year. 1500.40 to be exact.

screen-shot-2017-01-02-at-4-36-26-pm

2016 ended up being the year of running for me. There was a 5k PR, a half marathon PR, and a marathon PR & BQ. I ran my highest mileage ever at 1500 miles, my biggest week ever at 46 miles, and my biggest month ever at 180 miles. Whew! So with so many great milestones why am I still feeling so meh about running?

The end of marathon training coincided with the start of our long New England winter (ie. pure darkness at 4:30pm), a very disappointing end to the presidential election, and some super stressful family stuff. There’s been a lot of time spent eating my emotions and worrying over things I cannot control – not the most conducive to feeling good and active. So with the end of 2016 it’s time to shift the focus and channel my energy into healthier outlets – like running!

img_9779

What about freezing cold, dark, early mornings doesn’t scream love of running? The real bummer of this was that I woke up at 4:25 AM to meet friends for this run only to turn around 1/4 mile in because my car was sliding all over the road.

Even though I feel like I haven’t been running much, not running much has now taken the meaning of still hovering around 90-100 mile months. Plus, the desire to test out some new running gear – thank you very much to my in laws and my mom! – has been too good to pass up. We haven’t had much snow so far, but we have had a fair amount of icy sidewalks. My in laws gave me a pair Nanospikes and I loved them! Last year I tried out DIY screws in my shoes which led me to a very painful 10 mile run. These gave me great traction in the snow/ice sections and were still comfortable to run in on the clear sections. I do worry about wearing them out too quickly running on ground that isn’t snow covered so I will have to report back on that later.

My dad sent me this awesome bib and medal holder for Christmas. There are still a few slots empty waiting for more medals so I can’t leave those empty! img_0052

What are your 2017 goals?
Do you find yourself in a running rut after meeting a goal or ending a training cycle?

Advertisements

July Wrap Up & Baystate Marathon: Training Week 5

IMG_7711

You know when you’re chugging along, feeling like things are going well, and then at the last moment things fall apart and it totally brings down the success you felt before? That’s pretty much how my July running ended. I hit my highest mileage month ever and was feeling good, not great, but good about my marathon training when I had my worst run in over a year. Friday night I was debating between a 16M or 18M long run (which seems laughable now!) and come Saturday morning I wanted to call it quits by mile 4. By mile 5 I had already decided that there was no chance I could do the full 16 miles I had set out to do and I hoped to get to 10. It was just.so.hard. It was a bit humid out, but cooler than it has been so while the humidity didn’t help, I don’t know that it was the cause for my crash and burn run. Even after limping it in I was soooooo tired for the rest of the day and could barely muster up any energy.

But before my disastrous run we had a great week! My husband and I celebrated our 9th anniversary and had a fun date night out. My mother-in-law came to stay with our girls and we had an INCREDIBLE dinner at Farmstead Table which any local people should definitely check out. My husband is vegetarian and I also eat a mostly vegetarian diet which can sometimes be tricky when eating out. Farmstead Table had a huge selection of vegetarian options as appetizers and small plates. We ordered nearly every one of them and had a tapas style dinner.

 

This month I ran 161.1 miles which is huge for me! It was also 70 miles more than I ran in June which may have been part of my body deciding it needed some major rest on Saturday. Other than my bad run I’ve (knock on wood!) felt good and haven’t felt any IT band twinges. While I don’t write about it, I am still diligently doing my MYRTLs every single day to help keep my hips strong and keep ITBS as a non-issue. Here’s how my week looked:

Week 5 Recap: July 25-31

Monday: Plan: Recovery 5M – Actual: 5M @9:32

Tuesday: Plan: 3×1600 @6:51-7:15 (400 RI) – Actual: 1.25M w/u @8:53, 3×1600 (7:13, 7:13,7:19) w/2:30 RI, 1.15M c/d @8:53 – My husband didn’t have to leave for work until a little later in the morning so originally I planned to get up early and run these outside. We’re still in the midst of an extended heat wave so it was already hot in the early a.m. and I didn’t sleep well so I ended up sleeping longer and doing these at the gym. The first two were manageable, but the last one I had to really work for. I wanted to quit about .25M into the last one and ended up slowing down for the back half of it. About a month ago I ran the same workout with the repeats at 7:19, 7:19, 7:27 (it’s always that last one gets me!) for an average of 7:21 and this time I averaged 7:15 so at least there was some improvement. I just checked my plan and I don’t run this workout again until September. I’m excited to see where I am in 2 months. 

Wednesday: off

Thursday: Plan: 2M E, 3M @7:23, 2M E – Actual: 2M @8:50, 3m @7:33 (7:31, 7:30, 7:40), 2M @8:56 – Since 7:23 is my 5k PR pace there was no way I was attempting that pace as tempo miles sandwiched between 4 other miles in the middle of a training week. I was hoping 7:30 pace would be more realistic, but as you can see I couldn’t hold it for the 3rd tempo mile. 

Friday: Plan: 6M Easy – Actual: 5M @9:05 – These were run faster than I wanted, but I was in a bit of a time crunch and wanted to get in as many of my planned miles as I could. This may have been a mistake and next time I will take it easier on my easy days. 

IMG_7692

Saturday: Plan: 16M – Actual: 10.6M @9:08 – The terrible, no good, very bad run. I was huffing and puffing after the first mile. It’s was up a pretty steep hill so I still held hope that I’d settle in, but by mile 4 I was wondering if I should just call it quits. I knew there was no other time to re-attempt it with our weekend plans so I tried to pull it together. Took a few Honey Stinger Chews at mile 5 hoping for some quick energy, but it never came.  I had to work for every single step. My only surge came at mile 10 when the for the 2nd time of my run a truck of men honked at me as they drove past. It seriously pissed me off and gave me a surge of adrenaline as I thought of all the choice words I wanted to shout at them. Splits: 1) 9:25 2) 9:01 3) 8:50 4) 8:46 5) 9:06 6) 9:15 7) 9:28 8) 9:18 9) 8:50 10) 8:28 .6) 8:50

 

Weekly Total: 33 miles

What helps you get over a bad run?