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Archive for the ‘Cross Training’ Category

I had a feeling I would neglect the blog a bit after the marathon. Turns out I was right. 15 days later and I’m back!

It’s been so weird not training for the marathon. My life pretty much revolved around it for 18 weeks. I was either running or  thinking about running or talking about running all the time. I’m glad to be able to focus on other things now, but last Saturday I also found myself missing my long run! So strange.

The week following the marathon I took it very, very easy. I biked and ellipticalled everyday, but with very little resistance and very little speed. I wanted to run at the end of that week even though my legs were still a bit sore, but I ended up not fitting it in. It turns out it was a good thing I didn’t have the time because with a few extra days off of running I felt 100% better. I think it took 8 days to feel totally normal again, which isn’t too bad if you ask me! It was also a nice change to relax!

I went for 2 runs this past week. The first was a 3.5 miler on the treadmill. Now THAT was weird! I didn’t do one training run inside, and I have no idea what compelled me to run on the treadmill this past week. It is definitely less natural than running outside. The second was a speedy 5 miler outside. I kept the pace under 10 minute miles and it was the perfect weather. I ran around my neighborhood and then down to the river. It was fantastic.

I have also added back in strength training, which I am loving! I didn’t realize how much I missed it. I did some great work outs where I did circuits of cardio and strength to keep my heart rate up. It was really fun!

I wanted to run 7 miles this weekend, but the weekend seemed to slip away from me. I’m starting to realize that I will live (shocker!) if I skip a run or two. I don’t want to slack off completely because Broad Street is in a month. But I’m going to try and take a more relaxed approach with this race.

I’ll try to start weekly recaps again, but no promises!

–Melissa

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Well, this is it! I don’t have any more work outs until Saturday. The next time I lace up my sneakers will be to run 26.2 miles.

So crazy.

This week (or half of a week) had some great work outs. Here they are:

Monday: Speed Work – I was a little surprised to see that I still had speed work on my schedule this week. It was a 10 minute warm up, 6×400 with 400 RI, and a 10 minute cool down. I killed it! I warmed up at a 10:07 pace. The fast 400 splits: 7:42, 7:16, 6:44, 8:41, 6:42, 7:42. Then I cooled down with a 1 mile jog and some walking for a total of 5.8 miles.

I didn’t mean to be that speedy, but it felt natural, so I went with it. I’ll admit for the resting intervals I just walked. I know I’m supposed to be tapering so I wanted to keep this “easy”.

Tuesday: Cross Training – I went to a Spinning class because I know they don’t make me sore and it’s still great cardio. Unfortunately, this was one of the worst Spinning classes I have ever been to. Actually, no, it was definitely THE WORST, ever. The class is supposed to be 45 minutes (which I actually prefer over an hour long class because my mind starts to wander), but the instructor cut it short at 35 minutes. The instructor did nothing but 2 count jumps for the majority of the class. It was so absurd that I started doing my own thing.  Since it was only 35 minutes, I went and ellipticalled for 15 minutes after and then stretched for a bit.

Wednesday: Short Run – This was the last run of training! I couldn’t believe it. This was a 3 mile run at planned marathon pace. Honestly, I don’t know what my PMP is. When I first started training I thought I could do it at 10:20/mile. Then once I got further into training I realized that was unrealistic. However, I haven’t really been consistent. Some of my longer runs have been great with paces around 10:45, others have been not so great, and I don’t even want to calculate my pace. So it really depends how I feel on race day. I’m going to push myself (obviously…I will be running 26.2 miles…) but pushing myself means different things on different days for me. So we will see! There was a part in the book, The Extra Mile, that I just finished that I liked:

“Training and experience can make you more ready and more likely to do better on any given day, but there will always be that occasion when, no matter how prepared you are, it just isn’t your day.”

Anyway, back to today’s run. I decided to just do a “comfortable run” this was definitely faster than PMP. The splits: 9:58, 9:48, 9:20. Then I cooled down for a couple minutes before I had to hustle home to get ready for work, for a total of 3.18 miles. I can’t remember the last time I just ran 3 miles! It felt amazing. It was also great because I hit snooze about a million times and I still had time to work out before work and still make it there on time!

Thursday and Friday will be rest days.

So there you have it. 18 weeks of training. Over 410 miles of running. (Honestly I thought this would be more! But still cool. And totally time for a new pair of sneakers after the race!) I can hardly believe I made it through training. I woke up before the sun most days and gave up a lot of sleep, but I did it (despite people telling me I shouldn’t even try)! Anyway, here we are, with just TWO days until the marathon!

I’m so nervous for a few reasons (warning, the rest of this is a lot of rambling, but it’s helping me get out some of the jitters!):

1. I’m afraid I won’t finish. This doesn’t mean I’m not going to give it my all. But, you never know what might happen.

2. I’m afraid I won’t finish in time. This course has a 5 and half hour time limit. From what I’ve read, this is pretty short for a marathon, most seem to be 6-7 hour time limits (though I could be wrong). When I signed up for the race it said the course time limit was TBD, so I didn’t think much of it and assumed it would be something reasonable for a race like a Rock and Roll race which caters towards more casual runners. There is a cut off point around mile 12 and if you aren’t there in time they will make you go towards the half marathon finish instead of continuing on to do the full marathon. I don’t anticipate needing to go to the half marathon finish. I have run 12 miles many, many times in an hour less than the cut off time, but I’m concerned about when I cross the START line, because that will cut into my time to get to mile 12. I guess the worst that happens is I run a half marathon on Saturday.

3. I am having back pain again. I scheduled an acupuncture appointment for this afternoon, so I’m hoping that she gets all the kinks out, and FAST! because the last time I had this back pain I made it less than a mile into my long run before quitting and running straight to the place where I get massages.

4. The weather. I have been stalking the weather in DC like it is my job. First it said it was going to be hot. Then it said rain. Then it said thunderstorms. Now it says hot again. I have done every one of my training runs in 30-40 degree weather (except for the 18 miler which was sooo chilly). I am used to bundling up just a bit and feeling warm but not too warm in all my layers. I have done all my long runs with a jacket also. I put my phone (which has my music) in one pocket and my Gu in the other pocket. I wear my Camelbak too (I have decided to wear this for race day also. I’d rather have it and not use it than want it) but it’s annoying to get anything out of the pockets because you have to take it off.

I think I have decided that I will wear a tank top instead of my usual long sleeve turtleneck as my 1st layer, and then a long sleeved tech tee as my top layer (which I usually wear as my middle layer). Then I will put my phone in my Camelbak because I don’t think I will need to take it out for any reason, and in the off chance that I do need to, I’ll just take off my Camelbak, which isn’t the end of the world. Then I’ll put my Gu in my Spi Belt. Yes, I will feel like a pack mule and a little ridiculous with all these “extras” with me while I run, but I think this is the best bet. I want to carry my own Gu even though they have it on the course, because the flavors (Strawberry Banana and Blueberry Pomegranate) sound terrible to me. I also plan to wear my ear warmer because my headphones fall out otherwise, and if I get too hot I’ll just toss it.

Even with all these fears, I am SO excited too. I am already itching to run and I can’t wait to get out there and give it my all!

And since this post is already very random and long, how about a Dad picture:

Ready or not…

–Melissa

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Wow. I can’t believe it’s here. In SIX days I will be running a marathon. It’s hard to believe. In November this week felt so, so far away. But it’s here. I hope the next six days go quickly because I am really anxious/nervous/excited/etc for Saturday!!!! Here’s how the final full week of training was:

Monday: Rest – Something very silly happened. This is moderately embarrassing.

Remember last week on Friday when I did the strength work out with Mom and her trainer? My legs felt sore after and ruined my last very long run (I consider anything less than 6 miles to be a short run, 7-10 to be a moderate run, 11-13 to be a long run, and anything over 13 to be a very long run), but I didn’t anticipate any other soreness. Sunday night I was lying on my couch and I began to feel a crushing pain in my chest. It wasn’t anything heart related, it was just my muscles, so I wasn’t too worried. But my chest was killing me. It was a pain unlike anything I had ever felt. I moved to my bed and it hurt to stand up straight on the walk from my couch to the bed. I was hunched over but hoped that a good night’s sleep would help me feel better. One problem – I sleep on my side, and when I was lying on my side it felt like my pec muscles were literally crushing my lungs.

I could still breathe, so again I wasn’t too worried, but it was very uncomfortable. I laid on my back and tried to fall asleep, that wasn’t happening.

So of course, I did what any normal person would do.

I Googled.

Big, big mistake.

Next thing I knew I was convincing myself that I was either a) dying, b) having a heart attack, c) growing a third boob, d) had a rare but very serious pectoral tear and needed immediate surgery or e) dying.

I tried to calm myself down and eventually fell asleep for an hour or two, but I woke up again because I was so uncomfortable both from the chest pain and from sleeping on my back.

In the morning it still hurt, so I did what any normal person would do.

I called my Mommy.

She assured my I was just having soreness from our work out. She reminded me that I had done chest presses with VERY heavy weights for a girl. Good point, mom, good point.

I took some Advil and hoped the feeling would go away. I was uncomfortable all Monday, my chest was swollen and I had cleavage for the first time in my life (maybe not such a bad thing!). To top it all off I was fighting a cold too.

I wanted to kill Mom and/or her trainer for this. I was so worried that my marathon was in jeopardy!! But, instead of acting impulsively and ending up in jail for manslaughter (a sure way to end my marathon dreams!) I took an unplanned rest day and hoped I would feel better.

Tuesday: Cross Training – I felt MUCH better and went to a Spinning class after work. I wanted to run, because I knew that if I didn’t I would only be able to do 2 of my 3 planned runs for the week, but my chest didn’t feel 100% so I decided to do something a little more low key. The class was really good.

Wednesday: Tempo Run – I decided to choose between my speed work and my tempo run because they were about the same distances this week (around 6 miles). I headed out and told myself I would decide between the two once I got going. I ended up doing a tempo run. I didn’t push too hard, but hard enough to break 10 minute miles, since I am tapering. The splits were: 9:44, 9:55, 9:25, 9:26, 9:53, 9:37. Then I cooled down for a tiny bit to get to 6.10 miles. I might have cooled down for longer but I was meeting a friend at the bar to watch the Lehigh/Bucknell basketball game. Lehigh won! Woo!

Thursday: Cross Training – I just ellipticalled for an hour. It was relaxing and fairly easy. I have read that a lot of people over compensate with cross training during their taper since they aren’t running as much, but that isn’t a great idea. Noted.

Friday: Cross Training (again) – I did another AWESOME Spinning class. This might have been the best one I have ever taken. And I have taken A LOT of Spinning classes over the years. Then I followed mom and her trainer around the gym while he trained her in hopes that I could get him to stretch me out (he did).

Saturday: Long Run – This was the last Long-ish run of training! My plan called for 8-10 miles. I kept going back and forth on whether I should try to get those last extra miles in (sort of pointless at this point) or rest my legs. I ended up doing 10 miles anyway just for the sole purposes that I love getting those double digits in! I kept my pace on the slow side on purpose. The splits: 10:45, 10:59, 11:03, 11:19, 11:08, 11:12, 11:06, 10:47, 10:58, 10:13. Then I walked home for .86 miles. On my walk home I called Vic. Our conversation went like this:

Me: “I just finished my last long run!”

Vic: “Uh…no you didn’t”

Me: “My last LONG run!”

Vic: “I heard you, no you didn’t”

Me: “YES I DID!”

Vic: “You do realize you have to run a marathon next weekend?”

Me: “Oh. Yeah. Good point.”

Sunday: Cross Training – I ellipticalled for an hour while reading a book that Mom got my for my birthday. It’s called The Extra Mile and it’s about ultra-marathoner Pam Reed.

I’m still not done because I have been reading it very slowly over the past few months (on purpose) but there were a few parts that I really liked that I read today:

“Only once will you run your first 10-K, your first half-marathon, your first full marathon, your first ultra. So when you do experience a first, I think that it’s really important to stop for a moment to recognize how great it feels”

and

“Most people are used to running by themselves or with one or two other people. You can trot along, get lost in your thoughts, or have a pleasant conversation. In an event like Chicago, you suddenly find yourself being stared at and yelled at by thousands of people. The cheering crowds are definitely encouraging, but it’s a hugely different experience from the kind of running I usually do. This is where the concept of “running within yourself” becomes important. I need to filter out distractions and keep focused on my goals.”

I definitely want to take it all in next weekend and not forget how exciting this all is! It’s also been a while since I’ve done a serious race. I have been running solo (or on a handful of occasions with a friend) for the last 10 months. I’m sure it will be a strange feeling having all the spectators out there next weekend. I need to remember to stick to my plan. I think I will probably feel awkward taking my planned walking breaks, but I know that they work for me and I am going to have to force myself to take them (at least for the first 6 miles where it doesn’t feel like I really need them).

I have 3 more days of training left, so hopefully I will recap those days on Wednesday or Thursday!

–Melissa

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Since the 20 miler, I have been OBSESSED with the marathon. It’s literally all I think about. So, I was reading over my past posts for inspiration and motivation and all that…and I am kind of freaked out now. I have had A LOT of bad runs throughout this training. Yes, I’ve had some great ones (16 miler and 20 miler), but most of my posts start out with “well, this week wasn’t so good”. Soo…I’m pretty nervous now, especially since this week’s long run was another one of those “this week wasn’t so good” runs.

Here is how this week went:

Monday: Cross Training – I went to Spinning again this Monday. It was a great class.

Tuesday: Speed Work – This was a tough one! It was a 10 minute warm up followed by 2×2 miles with 400 of RI between each set, and 10 minutes cool down. Most of my speed work is shorter bursts of speed and then a break, this was TWO miles of speed and the a break. Ouch. But my splits were decent:

Tempo Distance Average Pace
Warm up 1.01 miles 10:15
Speed 2 miles 9:12
RI .25 miles 22:30
Speed 2 miles 8:55
RI .25 miles 17:49
Cool Down 1.04 miles 12:45
Total 6.55 miles

Wednesday: Rest – I worked normal hours this week but I was starting to feel under the weather, and needed a mid week break.

Thursday: Tempo Run – 6 miles. I was so tired, my legs wouldn’t move. It was painful. I think it was the past few weeks finally catching up with me. Oh well…

Mile 1 10:40
Mile 2 11:07
Mile 3 10:52
Mile 4 10:37
Mile 5 13:39
Mile 6 11:07
.15 miles 3:01

Friday: Cross Training – This was A BIG MISTAKE! I worked out with Mom and her trainer and they KICKED.MY.BUTT. It was a fantastic work out (bent over rows, chest press, lunges, burpees, etc. phew I’m getting tired just thinking about it!) and made me realize how much I want to do other things than just run after the marathon, but ow.

Burpees

Saturday: Cross Training – I was going to do my long run this morning. But I literally was so sore that I couldn’t get out of bed. When I woke up I rolled back and forth a few times and thought to myself…how am I going to get out of bed?!?!?! Needless to say, the long run wasn’t going to happen. I went to the gym and ellipticalled for an hour to get my blood moving, but it didn’t help much.

Sunday: Long Run Average-length-really-awful-run – I was still very sore when I woke up this morning, but I wanted to get in my 13 mile run. So I set off slow and steady. My legs felt sore and sluggish at first, but I kept hoping I would loosen up. No such luck. After five miles my legs started to hurt and I kept remembering an article I read about getting injured during your taper. So I called it a day. Unfortunately I was still very far from home. I ended up walking almost the full distance for a total of 11.25 for the day. I am mad at myself for not pushing through/for getting this sore in the first place. I am hoping that I loosen up over the next couple of days! Otherwise…I’m in trouble! Keeping my fingers crossed.

Less than 2 weeks to go!

–Melissa

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I DID IT! No, no…I didn’t run a marathon (yet), but I made it through the big, crazy, scary week on my marathon training schedule that I’ve been scared of since I first planned out this training back in November. I mean really, who runs 20 miles?! (Well I guess me…) This week was also INSANE work wise, I didn’t get home from work before midnight once. It was exhausting and I crashed HARD on Friday. But, like I said…I DID IT! Here is how the week went:

Monday: Cross Training – I took a Spinning class in the morning before work. I have to rush to get ready when I do a class because they end a bit later than I normally finish my work outs, but this was worth it. There was actually a sub teaching the class but it was REALLY good. Great way to start the day.

Tuesday: Speed Work – This week called for a ten minute warm up, then 5 x 2 minutes fast/2 minutes easy, and a ten minute cool down. Wait, what? That’s like…~4 miles! It was so amazing to do just a short, sweet run. I am kind of excited for after the marathon when I can run shorter distances on a regular basis. I want to keep up my mileage for Broad Street, but I can definitely work in some 3-5 mile runs in my training plan (which I will make up after the marathon). Here’s the average paces for the speed work:

Speed Type Distance Average Pace
Warm Up 1.04 miles 10:29
1 – 2 min fast .23 miles 8:35
1 – 2 min easy .18 miles 11:05
2 – 2 min fast .24 miles 8:31
2 – 2 min easy .18 miles 10:51
3 – 2 min fast .23 miles 8:49
3 – 2 min easy .16 miles 12:22
4 – 2 min fast .24 miles 8:25
4 – 2 min easy .15 miles 13:00
5 – 2 min fast .25 miles 8:08
5 – 2 min easy .18 miles 11:16
Cool Down 1.15 miles 11:15
Total: 4.23 Miles

Thursday: Tempo Run – This run was supposed to be 8 miles. But I got home from work around 1:30 am, and I had a crazy, busy day ahead of me. It was no surprise when I hit snooze a few extra times and only had time for 6 miles.Wednesday: Rest – Too tired.

I am calling this a huge victory that I even made it out there for 1 mile. Even still, I felt a bit guilty for not doing all 8, considering I’ve missed a few runs here and there because of my various ridiculous injuries. But, in the long run (ha…pun) I doubt 2 miles will make a huge difference. The splits:

Mile Split
1 9:51
2 10:20
3 9:26
4 9:46
5 9:25
6 9:54
0.06 1:38

I only had time to cool down for .06 miles, which isn’t really enough, but oh well.

Friday: Rest – I wasn’t going to work out this day regardless because I was running 20 miles the next day and wanted to feel rested. But even if I had wanted to I wouldn’t have be able to. I got home from work and passed out the second my head hit the pillow. I don’t think I have ever been so tired in my whole life.

Saturday: Long Run – This was the first Saturday I didn’t have to work in 5 weeks. I set my alarm for early to emulate race day. I wasn’t going to wake up at a ridiculous hour or anything, but I figured 6 would be early enough. But I woke up at 7:30 with my phone half way across my room. I must have turned off the alarm and chucked it in my sleep. This is why I can’t have nice things. I dragged myself out of bed. I did NOT want to go running at all. On the other hand, I wanted to get the run out of the way so I could relax on Sunday. I made my usual pre-long run breakfast– peanut butter on a flax wrap. So good. Then I got back in bed and watched this weeks Modern Family. So good. Then I dragged myself back out of bed and got dressed. Before I knew it I was out the door.

I downloaded an audio book. I chose Ellen Degeneres’ Seriously…I’m Kidding.

I had a few other books in mind but I figured that this would be nice and light and her voice wouldn’t irritate me as much as if it were some random fiction book. It was only 3 hours long, so I figured I could just switch over to music after. This turned out to be a BRILLIANT idea. It made the miles go by very quickly. The book wasn’t great, but I definitely laughed out loud a few times. My favorite part was when she was talking about how crazy people usually have shopping carts. Then she thought that it actually wasn’t such a bad idea since she usually keeps everything in her pockets. She said it could be like her purse on wheels. And she could call it a POW. But then she decided maybe that wasn’t such a good idea after all. I was cracking up, I bet other runners thought I was crazy. Maybe I should have been pushing a shopping cart…

I am debating whether or not to get an audiobook for race day. It really made me zone out during this run, but I don’t know if you are supposed to completely zone out during a race. I’ll have to think about it…

The first few miles I was not feeling so great, but eventually I got into it. I saw a partner at my company running around mile 4, I took a Gu (Espresso flavor mmm) around mile 6, it started to flurry around mile 9. Around mile 10.5 I reached the start of the Drive again and went inside to the little cafe to fill up my CamelBak even though it wasn’t empty yet. They have a water cooler that runners can use for free, though I’m pretty sure it’s just filled with tap water. Still, very convenient.

At that point, it also started BLIZZARDING! I was worried about going back out in it, so I called mom to see if she thought it was safe, and to let her know where I would be in case I ended up in a snow bank. She said to go for it, and off I went. The “blizzard” lasted for about 3 minutes. Then the sun came out again.

Around mile 11 I saw a friend from middle school. Also around mile 11 I took another Gu (chocolate flavored mmm). Around mile 12 I felt myself starting to feel like how I did during the 18 mile run. I didn’t want it to end up like that run, so I took an extra long walking break. It didn’t kill my pace too much, and I started up running again feeling so much better. Around mile 15 I saw the same friend from middle school again. (I also saw the same old man 4 times during my run, kicking some serious butt, and a couple other people multiple times.) Around mile 16 my book ended, and I switched over to music. Around mile 17 I took a 3rd Gu (espresso again). Also around mile 17 I realized that I was going to make it! Around mile 18 I ran out of water but was nearing the cafe again so I figured I would fill up again even though I was almost done. Around mile 19 I stopped at the cafe. I was shaking pretty badly when I stopped. Weird. Then I finished really strong. Amazingly, it only took me a minute longer to run 20 miles than it took me to run 18 the other week. At mile 20 I called mom to tell her I actually did it! Then I walked home for a mile and a quarter for a total of 21.25 for the day (not including the tons of walking I did the rest of the day/night). The splits:

Mile Split
1 11:32
2 11:02
3 11:12
4 10:58
5 10:52
6 11:38
7 10:57
8 10:59
9 10:43
10 10:45
11 10:50
12 13:27
13 10:36
14 10:43
15 10:59
16 11:41
17 11:21
18 11:15
19 10:46
20 10:01
21 18:10
0.25 4:18

I know that I still have 6.2 more miles to run after this until I complete a marathon. I kind of wish I had a 22 miler on my schedule. Most plans max out at 18 miles, 20 miles, or 22 miles. I picked the 20 mile max because the whole schedule seemed like it would work for me, but now one more super long run would be nice. However, there is only 3 weeks til the marathon, and I am officially tapering, so that is not going to happen. I also think that I kind of feel ready for it! This long run totally boosted my confidence. I know I could just as easily have a bad day like with my 18 mile run, but I’m hoping with 3 weeks of tapering I will feel fresh and rested for the marathon. I read an article earlier in the week that basically said that you ARE going to have some really awful training runs, it’s normal. All I can do is not get too cocky after this long run and hope that I don’t have an awful run on race day!

Sunday: Cross Training – I did a very easy 45 minutes on the elliptical. It felt good to get my legs moving again. I read an issue of Women’s Health during my work out. It said that moving a little after hard work outs is one of the best things for recovery. So I covered that! It also said to drink lots of water (working on it as I type) and to get a massage (it’s not just an indulgence! It really helps your muscles). So now I’m off to get a massage!

Total miles: 31.54 miles

This week should be much less crazy work-wise, and training-wise. I think I can get it all in!

–Melissa

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Another week down! We are now less than a month from the marathon, so crazy! I signed up for the Broad Street Run this week. It’s a 10 mile race on May 6. I think it will be good to have a goal in mind for after the marathon.

This week was extremely exhausting. I worked until the wee hours of the morning, but I still managed to squeeze in 5 work outs. Here’s what I did:

Monday: Cross Training – I swam and biked. Both of these helped to loosen up my legs from the 18 miler.

Tuesday: Rest – 4 hours of sleep = no work out

Wednesday: Speed Work – This workout was a 1 mile warm up, 10×400 with 400 of RI in between each,  and a 1 mile cool down. I warmed up at a 10:03 pace. I did a walk/jog for my resting intervals. The pace of the 10 fast intervals were: 8:50, 8:26, 8:26, 8:11, 8:23, 8:07, 8:16, 9:08, 7:19, 8:12. I wanted to keep them all in the 8 minute range. When I didn’t get that for the 8th 400 I pushed really hard for the 9th. Then I cooled down with a mile run and some walking for a total for the day of 7.28 miles.

Thursday: Rest – 4 hours of sleep = no work out (again)

Friday: Tempo Run – This was 1 mile easy, 5 miles tempo. I ended up just doing what felt good. The splits: 9:10, 9:24, 9:24, 9:36, 10:13, 9:00. Then I cooled down for a total of 6.11 miles.

Saturday: Cross Training – I did the arc trainer for 15 minutes, the elliptical for 15 minutes and upper body strength for 20 minutes.

Sunday: Long Run – This was a step back week. Hooray! My schedule called for 10 miles. I considered doing more since I skipped a 13 miler the other week because of my neck. I set out on a 12 mile route, but when I got to 10 miles I was just ready to be done. So I walked the last 2 miles home. It felt great to just walk. I didn’t run with water and I was very thirsty around mile 7. Big mistake. I’m also feeling some foot pain that feels like this old injury. I’m a bit worried about that. The splits: 10:54, 10:52, 10:40, 10:53, 10:54, 10:37, 10:58, 11:02, 10:33, 10:31. Not my best, not my worst.

Total mileage: 25.39

Time for bed! Week 15 is going to be the most challenging yet! I’m nervous.

–Melissa

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This week was not my best. I only ended up missing one (more) run, and one cross training day. So in the end my back/neck injury thing wasn’t too bad. Here’s what the week looked like:

Monday: Cross Training Rest – I couldn’t move my head again when I woke up in the morning. I was in a ton of pain, and called it a rest day.

Tuesday: Speed Work Rest – Still in a ton of pain. I decided to make an appointment with an acupuncturist. I didn’t think my regular doctor would do anything than tell me to take some pain killers and wait it out. I was already doing that and my neck wouldn’t move and my back was killing me, I needed to take a different approach. I left work early (amazing) and went to acupuncture. I felt immediate relief. I left able to turn my head but my back still hurt a bit.

Wednesday: Cross Training – I kept it very light with 45 minutes on the elliptical. I didn’t want to do anything too strenuous, but it felt good to move again.

Thursday: Tempo Run  Rest – This was also the week that my crazy schedule finally caught up to me. I set me alarm for the morning but literally could not get out of bed. I was so exhausted and decided to post pone this run until Friday. I went to my second acupuncture after work this night. Again, I felt better but still a little off.

Friday: Tempo Run – I waited until after work to do this run since we get out at a reasonable time on Friday nights. I was nervous because I hadn’t run since last Thursday, but I was also SO anxious to hit the road. My legs were itching to run! This called for 1 easy mile, 4 tempo miles, 1 easy mile. I ended up doing a 10k at whatever pace I felt like running because I didn’t want to put too much pressure on myself for the first run back. But I killed it and juuust missed my PR by 18 seconds. The splits:

Mile 1: 9:10
Mile 2: 8:57
Mile 3: 9:20
Mile 4: 9:38
Mile 5: 9:57
Mile 6: 9:33
.2 Miles: 1:46

Not too shabby for my first run back!

Saturday: Cross Training – I hit the gym after work, but ended up not getting there until later than planned so I only had time for an elliptical work out before the gym closed. I wanted to keep this work out very easy anyway because I had an 18 mile run planned for the next morning.

Sunday: Long Run – I wasn’t sure if I was completely ready to do such a long run after the whole neck/back thing, but I also knew that I couldn’t skip this run if I wanted the marathon to happen. I felt off when I headed out for this run. It wasn’t pretty. I think the fact that it was FREEZING COLD probably didn’t help things, but I know I could have pushed myself harder. At one point I touched my face and I realized it was completely numb. I considered finishing the run inside at the gym, but I kept at it when I saw a guy running in shorts. I really was just not feeling it at all today, and my paces showed. I walked A LOT. My legs were tired. I just couldn’t get in the zone today. I’m really, really hoping that this doesn’t happen on race day. Anyway, the terrible splits:

Mile Pace
Mile 1: 10:16
Mile 2: 11:01
Mile 3: 10:49
Mile 4: 11:27
Mile 5: 11:38
Mile 6: 13:34
Mile 7: 12:16
Mile 8: 12:43
Mile 9: 13:24
Mile 10: 14:10
Mile 11: 13:18
Mile 12: 12:07
Mile 13: 13:36
Mile 14: 13:14
Mile 15: 12:26
Mile 16: 12:27
Mile 17: 12:17
Mile 18: 10:18
.76 Miles: 12:42     Cool Down

Yeah….Not so great…But at least it was a PDR. And at least I finished. There is always next week!

–Melissa

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