Monday, July 28, 2014

Training 7.21.14 - Chicago Marathon W8

Monday 7/21 - Rest
Monday rest day.

Tuesday 7/22 - Run || 4 miles || 41:40, 10:25p || 75* and 80 humidity
Hottest run .. ever, I think! First 4 miler. Splits 10:59/10:4110:10//9:44. 4/155.7

Wednesday 7/23 - Run || 7 miles || 1:09:25, 9:55p || 63* 80% humidity
Despite being tired this was a great run, hit my goal pace pretty close..felt weird to run this long in the middle of the week! Splits 10:40/10:13/10:12/9:52/9:37/9:39/8:56..  11/162.7

Thursday 7/24 - Run || 4 miles || 39:18, 9:49p || 57*, and 80 humidity
Nice run, much cooler than Tuesday. Splits 10:32/9:49/9:32/9:12. 15/166.7.

Friday 7/25 - Rest
Friday rest day.

Saturday 7/26 -  Run || 14 miles || 2:28:19, 10:35p || 70*, and 80 humidity
Despite being hot I ran a walk breaks here. Although, I conclude that traffic lights are annoyingly ubiquitous for long runs....29/180.7

Sunday 7/27 - Rest
Unplanned rest day...our water heater burst and I am lucky I didn't miss any runs...cross training just didn't make the cut when we had to lay new flooring. I plan on doing it 7/28.

Total: 29 miles run, no cross training. Missed my first marathon training workout by missing the cross training but I did go for a 45 minute walk on Saturday too so meh. Real life interfered this week. Onwards and upwards!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Training 7.14.14 - Chicago Marathon W7

Monday 7/14 - Rest
Monday rest day.

Tuesday 7/15 - Run || 3 miles || 29:56, 9:59p || 55* and 80 humidity
Cold and humid is weird.. Splits 10:48/9:41/9:30. 3/133.7

Wednesday 7/16 - Run || 6 miles || 1:00:39, 10:06p || 54* 80% humidity
Cold and humid is still weird. Also, no bird attack again...maybe they're done nesting. Mile 5 I got caught behind a pair of runners on some single track so had to slow down. It reminded me how far I've come, because they were running about a 10mm. Splits 10:36/10:05/9:36/9:26/9:38/9:00.  9/139.7

Neat effect of cold and humid: My lake looked like it was steaming as I ran past.

Thursday 7/17 - Run || 3 miles || 29:34, 9:50p || 55*, and 85 humidity
Tired and could not get going the first mile, but got it in. Last mile felt so much easier than the first. Splits 10:44/9:50/8:51. 12/142.7.

Friday 7/18 - Run || 9 miles || 1:31:54, 10:12p || 70 and 60% humidity
This run ended up faster paced than I was aiming for, but I kind of just wanted it to be over because I wanted dinner and I did it at night. That sounds terrible now that I wrote that but hey, I was hungry! I saw fireworks and lots of fireflies as I ran. 21/151.7

Saturday 7/19 -  Rest

Sunday 7/20 - Walk || 45 minutes
Family walk this week!

Total: 21 miles run, 45 minutes walked. Cut back week my long run jumps to 14 and I am super absurdly nervous. My mid week long run jumps to 7 next week and no more 3 milers...they bump to 4!

Friday, July 18, 2014

Overthinking and training check in

Sorry the blog has been so quiet. Marathon training is going well - nothing unusual to report - but I realized, I usually blog about things I'm thinking about for the future and for the most part, I am trying really hard not to look ahead right now.

See, marathon training is really intimidating me, I realized. In a way that training for a half never did. I am not sure why, if it's all the top of "Respect the distance" I hear or or the knowledge that it is going to double the farthest I've ever run...the thought of the hours of commitment...I don't know.

But dude. It's psyching me out! So I am trying not to think about it.

I'm doing a good job, for the most part, but it makes for a boring blog sometimes! But I do look ahead at the end of the week so I do week, my training levels up again. Weekday runs have been 3/6/3 - they started at 3/5/3. Next week they jump to 4/7/4. All doable distances, but intimidating to think about a 7 mile midweek run...I've never gone further than 6 during the week.

And my long run next week will be a PDR...14 miles. Not a PDR by much, but a PDR...

Yeah, I'm overthinking.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Training 7.7.14 - Chicago Marathon W6

Monday 7/7 - Rest
Monday rest day.

Tuesday 7/8 - Run || 3 miles || 30:52, 10:17p || 70* and 90 humidity
This run felt like breathing water, and after two days off felt tough. Splits 10:59/10:24/9:20. 3/109.7

Wednesday 7/9 - Run || 6 miles || 1:00:39, 10:06p || 61* 80% humidity
No bird attack this week! Splits 11:19/10:18/9:52/9:45/9:41/9:28.  9/115.7

Thursday 7/10 - Run || 3 miles || 28:16, 9:25p || 59*, and breezy, chilly but humid
Sunrise run! Splits 10:08/9:24/8:37. 12/118.7.

Friday 7/11 - Run || 12 miles || 2:07:32, 10:37p || 74 and 60% humidity
The plan had been to run Saturday, but my husband made plans without telling me so today was the day to fit it in...bleh. Late night run..hotter, buggier, darker, and later than I am used to running...did not enjoy the clouds of gnats, but the sunset was beautiful. 24/130.7

Saturday 7/12 -  Rest

Sunday 7/13 - Elliptical || 5.38 miles || 60:00, 11:09p || Course 1 level 3
Took it easy but got my hour in.

Total: 24 miles run, 5.38 elliptical. On to my second cut back week and my last single digit long run until taper..

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Changing training plans

I love my trail season pass, but I will say that it has taught me two things...first, training for a half is much easier and shorter to commit to, and second, altering a training plan around races you've scheduled is as much of an art as a science. Well, I think. Since this is my first time training for a marathon, I'm assuming that that's what all the mixed responses means.

Since my trail pass has monthly races and marathon training goes for over 3 months, there were some conflicts. Namely, a 5 mile race that fell on an 11 mile day, a half that fell on a 17 mile day, and a 4 mile race that fell on a 20 miler day. Being a novice I knew I didn't want to skip races that I'd paid for but at the same time, I wasn't sure exactly how to adjust around those. I asked on a distance group and a few friends who have been running much longer (and many more marathons) than I have.

And almost no one gave me the same answer. For the 5 miler most people said warm up 3 miles ahead of time and 3 miles after, one person said do the long run a different day and don't race the 5 miler. (I ended up doing that - 11 miles is still low enough that it's a distance I'm very comfortable with, so I felt okay adding extra to the week, I just took the trail run very easy.)

For the half some people said add miles to warm up and cool down, some people suggested flipping weeks in my training schedule, and one really helpful person actually had me send him my training plan (which I have plotted out on an excel sheet) and he redid it to accommodate all the races, with notes.

And for the four miler some people said skip and some people said do the 20 a different day.

Personally, I am taking a little bit from each person I talked to and sort of hodge-podging it, along with my best instincts for what my body is capable of. It makes me uncomfortable though - for my first marathon, my instinct mostly says - follow the plan! Do not deviate!

What about you? Do you alter training plans, or do you stick to them to the letter? Or do you not bother with plans?

Monday, July 7, 2014

Training 6.30.14 - Chicago Marathon Week 5

Monday 6/30 - Rest
Monday rest day.

Tuesday 7/1 - Run || 3 miles || 30:03, 10:01p || 71* and 90 humidity
Humid and hot but I guess I'm getting used to it, this didn't feel...impossible? Splits 10:44/9:51/9:25. 3/81.6

Wednesday 7/2 - Run || 6 miles || 58:53, 9:48p || 61* and breezy - humid but cool
Getting up before the sun rise makes for better runs. This went great, other than the redwinged black bird who attacked me halfway through mile four!! This time I was 10 feet past her tree by the time she dive bombed me. Splits 10:37/10:10/9:40/9:19/9:30/9:25.  9/87.6

And you thought you were safe...quoth the blackbird, nevermore?! 

Thursday 7/3 - Run || 3.1 miles || 29:32, 9:31p || 57-61*, and breezy, chilly but humid
Didn't mean to do 5K, but the baby broke the band on my F10 so I've been using mapmyrun on my phone and my 405, and they...disagree on how far I've run. Nice run though! Splits 10:09/9:37/8:56/0:46. 12/90.7.

Friday 7/4 - Run || 11 miles || 1:52:41, 10:14p || 64* and only 65% humidity! (only!)
Fridays are normally rest days but I had to re-arrange my week to accommodate the 'MERICA 5 mile trail run Friday. Had a great run despite not getting a rest day before it! Splits 10:52/10:44/10:45/10:14/10:17/10:07/9:42/9:45/10:17/9:45/9:43. Mile 9 is so different from 7/8 and 10/11 because I stopped to try to take a picture of an uncooperative bunny. 23/101.7.

Hi, I'm an uncooperative bunny. If you can't see me, that's because I'm UNCOOPERATIVE.

Saturday 7/5 -  Run || 5 miles || 57:58, 11:32p || forgot to check the temps
'MERICA!. 28/106.7

Sunday 7/6 - Rest
Well earned rest!

Total: 28 miles run. With the race this week it ended up being askew from my training plan - I am counting the trail run as my cross since I walk/ran it and it was definitely not like my long run the day before! How am I already done with 5 weeks of training?! 

Sunday, July 6, 2014

'MERICA Trail 5M - race recap

So who decided to run a tough technical five mile trail the day after running her first double digit run since April? And one where it was a PDR for a run with no walk breaks? -waves hands frantically in the air- ME ME ME!

..oh that's not a smart idea? Oh well! I had the season pass long before the long run was planned, and I felt funny skipping a race! My plan was to walk/run and not push it today, because I managed to run much faster than I'd meant to (it didn't feel that fast, but I was sore when I woke up today!).

Of course, I didn't count on how challenging the 'MERICA run would be. It was hard to tell from the pictures if it was going to be harder or easier than the Wholly Hell from last month.

The race started off pretty promptly at 10 with - instead of a horn - someone chugging a beer. Hey, it's MERICA! We were off with a start in the grass; this part should have been the easiest but in the first 1/2 mile I managed to step wrong and land a foot strike on the extreme edge of my foot. Ouch! It hurt for a few minutes and then faded, but it's been sore today. Blech!

Soon after the grass we ended up on some single-track trail in the forest; this part really got congested and made me wish I'd started further up in the pack. It would eventually thin out, but the first mile came in at 12:40 because we single filed it for a lot. The second mile involved some muddy single trail with verrrry slick mud (but I didn't fall!), a small creek crossing, and a large creek crossing that the first time through I managed to do without getting wet (don't worry - since it was an out and back, I was not so lucky the second time and ended up super muddy and wet!).

Slippery mud! Photo courtesy of Muddy Monk FB.

It also involved single track edging over a river, with what seemed like a pretty sheer vertical slide into the river if you mis-stepped...and to this inexperienced cliff diver it looked like a good 10 foot drop. Kind of scary actually, especially since to get out once you'd gone along the edge you had to go up a pretty steep incline!

Shoe aftermath...they're normally bright black and bright purple..

The third mile was on some paved trail, which should be easy - and time wise I did it in about 9 1/2 minutes - but it was in the sun. Yuck! Put me back in the shady forest, please, even with the scary climb and slower pace with all the roots and climbing and slippery mud. But I did manage to pass a lot of people in this mile.

Miles 4 and 5 were just miles 1 and 2 on repeat, although this time I managed to dunk my feet in the creek mud for the bigger of the creek crossings. It made a heroic attempt to steal a shoe, too, although I did manage to retain  my footwear.

Muddy creek crossing. Sheer banks! Photo courtesy of Muddy Monk FB.

The scenery for the race was beautiful and I mostly stuck to my walk/run plan to give my legs a break. I finished in "official" time of 58:09, just 1 second shy of a PR, and if I have a bummer from this race, it's that the lovely time official told me I'd done it in under 58, which would have been a PR despite walk/running it to take it easy after my long run. To find out I'd come 2 seconds shy is just...ouch! Oh well! EDIT: I got a response from Muddy Monk that they actually hit enter late on my time and forgot to fix it at the moment. Official time - 57:58, 10 second PR!

PR excitement at the finish line! Photo courtesy of Muddy Monk FB. 

Ah well. Next up in the series is the Nearly Sane Half, which is in my backyard. I'll be running it as part of a 17 miler so I figure I will warm up for 2 miles before the race and cool down for 2 after. Whoo! (I am scared guys.) 

And then there were 7 holders of various liquids!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Black bird, black bird, sitting in a tree..

...for the love all things holy, will you please stop dive-bombing me?!

So on my FB a month or so ago, I posted a picture of a pretty bird flying away from me, one that I'd been trying to get a good picture of for a while but these birds were so demure and shy I never got close enough.

Well, Kim warned me that they like to attack runners. I sort of shrugged to myself, because these birds were shy! I just couldn't picture them attacking. They were beautiful but very coy.

...folks, I could not have been more wrong. The same cheeky little snit has dive-bombed me twice and whinges at me constantly. Today I thought I was home free when I stared him down and got 10 feet past his tree, but no. As soon as I turned around he smacked me in the head.


Like I was warned, apparently, it's pretty common.

I don't think he can seriously hurt me, but it sure gives you an adrenaline rush...both times he got me he's definitely thrown off my rhythm! From what I can tell there isn't much I can do about it, other than wait for nesting season to end, so I'm mostly just griping, but it did get me many of you are dealing with bird attacks while you run?!