Sunday, March 27, 2016

Training recap (3/21-3/27)

Week 16: 

Monday--AM: This became an unplanned rest morning, as I had severe insomnia on Sunday evening.  I blame the fact that I got 11 hours of sleep on Saturday night... and maybe the can of Coke I drank at 7 PM on Sunday evening as well!  I texted Jess to cancel... I don't do that often, but I still felt bad.

PM: I needed to get in today's easy 5 miler, so I set out for a solo run as soon as my husband got home from work.  I never very very rarely run solo.  It's simply not safe to do so in the wee hours of the morning when I typically run, so I just don't do it.  I started out and the first thing I noticed was the sun (yay!)... and the second thing I noticed was that my legs were heavy.  I don't have time to dwell on heavy legs when it's 5 AM; I just run.  I sighed and resigned myself for 5 long, slow miles.  I told myself that I would just go with it... run relaxed, listen to my music, and not care about my pace.  I didn't even look at my watch until it buzzed at me to indicate a mile had passed.  I was literally shocked when I saw my split: 8:22.  What the what?!!  There was no way that an 8:22 felt like THAT.  I figured that I would continue to run the same way and see what happened.  The miles clicked by... 8:17, 8:13, 8:05, 8:01.  Obviously my legs eventually loosened up, but not once did I really feel like I was pushing during this run.  If I had been asked to predict my splits, I'd have said 9:00-9:30.  My overall pace was an 8:12.  That's my goal marathon pace!  This run was such a confidence builder for me, even though it was NOT planned that way.  I realized that I may just have a 3:35 marathon lurking in these legs!

After I got home, I did my 20 minutes of glute strengthening exercises as well as about 10 minutes of stretching.

Tuesday--No more yoga class, boo hoo!  I've signed up for the next session, but it doesn't start until April 12.  Tonight I did a quick strength routine (35 minutes) consisting of squats, push-ups, planks, wall-sits, core work, triceps and lunges.  

Wednesday--AM: Drop back week means no speed work.  Met Allison and Meggie at Hoover again for 6 miles.  We did a 30 second pick-up at the start of miles 2-6.  Overall pace: 9:10.  

PM: Back to the pool!  Now that basketball is over, I can go swimming on Wednesday nights again.. at least until soccer starts up in a couple of weeks LOL.   I picked a doozy of a day to return, as Robin had a test set planned.  We did a warm-up, and then started the test set (400 free, about 10 minutes of easy swimming, then a 200 free).   Last time, I did the 400 free in 5:32 and the 200 free in 2:38.  I didn't think I would go any faster (and assumed I'd go slower) since I haven't been in the water much at all lately.  I surprised myself with a 5:27 and a 2:36!  It helped that my friend Megan came to practice tonight, as we are almost the exact same speed and she pushed me... once a competitive swimmer, always a competitive swimmer! (Her times were identical to my times from the last test set!)   Total yards: 1700. 

Thursday--AM: Treadmill miles with Allison S. because her knee was bugging her a bit and she was concerned that she might slow me up if she had to walk.  I didn't mind as I've missed running with this lady!  We actually met up super early so that we could hit up Starbucks afterward for even more chat time, since I only had 4 miles on the schedule.  Overall pace: 9:30 (kept the treadmill on 6.3 the entire time).

From Allison :)

PM: 25 minutes of glute and calf strengthening work followed by a 15 minute yoga for runners video that I found online.  It was very similar to what Marcy has us do at class, but a lot shorter obviously.  Still felt good to stretch out!

Friday--Rest day!  AND the first day of my spring break, so it was pretty much the best rest day ever :)

Saturday--Long run day!  Since it was a drop back week, Paige only had 13-15 on my plan.  My partners were planning on 12, so I figured I'd do 14 and just run the last couple solo.  Allison thought she might join me for the final 2, but she was having some cramping/breathing issues, so I did end up running the final two miles alone.  Of course, par for the course, I met a couple of guys to chat with for the final half-mile ;)  I just can't run without meeting a friend!

We came across a raccoon who was not-quite-right and had to call the cops!

Splits: 9:11, 8:54*, 9:02, 8:50*, 9:01, 9:01, 8:53*, 8:55, 8:51*, 8:58, 8:58*, 9:01, 8:55*, 9:36 (miles with an * were ones where I did the pick-ups, and the final mile was when I met the couple of guys... their pace was a bit slower).

Sunday--Easter takes precedence, but I was able to get on the bike for an hour between the kiddos finding (and devouring) their baskets and candy and heading to my aunt's house for lunch and the egg hunt.  The sad part is that it's a gorgeous day here in Central Ohio (mid-70's all afternoon!), so being stuck on my trainer wasn't cool... but again, Easter takes precedence.

Other miscellaneous notes:

I can hardly believe that the race is just 4 weeks away!  Last year, this was the week that my season-ending injury occurred... just under 4 weeks before the marathon.  Of course that's on my mind.  I feel stronger than I did a year ago, but mentally it is hard to not think about it.  This week coming up is my last high-mileage week, and then the tapering will begin.  I have told myself this entire training cycle, if I can just make it to the starting line, then I will be grateful.  And I still feel this way.  Yes, I want to qualify for Boston.  More than almost anything.  But I've realized over the past year that for me, qualifying will mean that the "perfect storm" must happen... great weather, no GI issues, strong legs, spot-on fueling... and if something is amiss in this pie, it just may not happen.  But that doesn't mean this training cycle was all for naught.  I have loved the miles with my friends, and am so very grateful for the ride that this 20 weeks has taken me on.  

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