Monday, February 6, 2012

Half Marathon Training: Week #4

So, I have decided to do away with trying to take pics when I'm out and about running. It's kind of difficult to get my phone out of the armband, then put it back in all while running. Not to mention everything looks brown and boring and all the same.

Sunday: 3.6 mile run + strength
Nice and easy. Just the way I needed to start this week out. I was a little tired from the Friday's long run, but I was feeling pretty good by the end.
Monday: 35 minute tempo run
Ugh. Totally did not go as planned. For some reason my body was refusing to make this a "hard" day. I kept feeling like I would speed up, but would almost always slow right back down.

My goal for the run was to have a nice easy warm-up for the first 10 minutes (HR around 165-170), followed by a HR between 170-175 for minutes 10-15, 175-180 for minutes 15-20, 180-185 for minutes 20-25, and 185+ for minutes 25-30, then slowing back to 165-175 for the last five minutes.

Yeah. That did not happen. For some reason I was struggling to get my heart rate up to 180, then I may have briefly reached 185, but I just couldn't maintain it. I think my max HR reached was only 187. I honestly don't know what was going on. I kept feeling like I was trying to push myself, but my body would for some reason always revert back to an easier pace. Frustrating.
Tuesday: 3 mile easy run + 3 mile walk
Tuesday turned out to be an absolute beautiful day for running with temps hovering in the mid-50s. I happily put on a t-shirt (a t-shirt!!) and some running shorts and headed out to the trail. The run was great, I didn't feel too bad, and I had it in my head from the get-go that this was a day to pull back and go easy on the pace. No pushing.

Fine. Dandy. Then I finished my run. And went to get in my car. No key.

Most running shorts have a tiny little pouch/pocket thing sewn into the inside front of the shorts. Whenever I'm wearing these kind of shorts, it's always where I keep my key. In the 16 years I've been running and keeping my key in the little key pocket -- no problems. Until Tuesday. No key in the key pocket.

I did the only thing I could do, well, maybe short of having a break down, I went back and retraced my route.
All three miles of it. I'm pretty sure I almost went blind from the constant and intense side-to-side sweep of the trail I was doing.

I was still about 200 meters from the end of my route and still... no key. I could not for the life of me remember feeling the key fall or hearing it hit the ground. Then I got a bright idea.
The other thing that usually comes with running shorts is a built-in brief. Now some people like to just assume that the built-in brief works as underwear and that's all they wear. To me, that is weird.

Anyhoo. So I had an idea. What if, instead of actually falling out of the key pocket to the ground, it fell out of the key pocket into the built-in brief and never went anywhere? So I checked.
Let me tell you. Finding that dang key in my shorts totally made up for the fact I was alone, behind an elementary school, with my hand down my shorts. Egads.

So yeah. Remind me never to do that again. Or at least check my shorts before wandering around for an hour in the now-not-so-warm-and-no-sun weather.
Wednesday: 4 x 400m Hills
Wednesday was another beautiful day for running. (Yay for shorts and t-shirt!) Since we moved our long run up a day the previous week, I ended up having an extra day to add in some speed work. I had originally planned on starting hill work in a couple weeks, but I figured while I had the time and awesome weather, why not?

Now I know 4 seems like a fairly low number, however, the lovely hill I choose to do my workout on averages a 5.5% grade, although there are several areas which are steeper than a 14% grade. I had attempted a hill workout on this same route about 7 months ago and could only make it 2/3 of the way up before the lactic acid took over and I would have to turn around and go back down.

Which makes me proud to say I ran the entire way up 3 times, then walked up the 4th. I don't even feel bad about walking, as my heart rate was consistently 175 the whole way up (a little bit higher than it is during an easy run). But man, did this ever remind that my calves and butt and are not strong.
Thursday: Yoga + Strength
Speaking of feeling Wednesday's workout, I woke up on Thursday and could barely walk. Both my calves and backside/hips were beyond ridiculously tight. I surprisingly managed to push through some yoga (which did help loosen me up, for about 5 minutes), and some upper body strength training. I totally bailed on the lower body portion as there was just going to be no way. Foam rolling and laying on the couch were definitely my BFFs.
Friday: 8 mile run
I was partly looking forward to the run on Friday and partly terrified. I was still very sore from Wednesday and was worried I would have another long run like last week, fighting every step of the way to keep up with my running partners. If I could even run that was.

I tried to stretch out and move around throughout the day, and I finally felt halfway decent around the time of our run. Luckily, I hardly even noticed my calves once we started running. On the other hand, I could feel my sore glutes every step of the way for the entire first half of the run. Not pleasant. But we did start out at a reasonable pace, and I surprisingly felt great the entire run. Even with my aches and pains I could have easily gone for at least another mile.
Saturday: Indoor Soccer Game
Of course, that nice little long run we did made my glute pain flair up even worse after sitting down for a while, which continued into Saturday. There was a while there that I wasn't sure I was going to even be able to play. Once again, however, things loosened up over the course of the day and I was able to run without much discomfort by game time. And once I was nice and warmed up, I didn't really even notice it at all. Whew. I was getting worried there for a bit.

Hopefully all those aches will go away this week.

The mileage is definitely increasing this week, and I'm make a jump from 8 to 10 miles on the long run, too. Although this jumps seems kind of random, there is a method to the madness...

I've signed up for a 10 mile race at the end of February. It's actually the exact same course as my half marathon, minus the 5k at the beginning, which makes me really happy. According to the McMillan running calculator, I should be able to finish in under 1:25:00, so I'll set that as my current goal. But... we'll see how it goes and how I feel when it's actually time to run.


  1. Hahaha I just burst out laughing reading about you sticking your hand down your shorts behind an elementary school. So glad your key was not truly lost!

  2. Love your little drawings! I'm planning on running a 10k in June and was due to starting my training 'proper' in about three weeks but you've inspired me to put on my shorts and shoes and head out TODAY. And to add a section on running to my blog to keep me on the straight and narrow. Thanks!

    1. Glad to help and to give you that extra little boost to get out the door! A little extra running base prior to training never hurts!



Related Posts with Thumbnails
Pin It button on image hover