Monday, March 19, 2012

Half Marathon Training: Week #10

The last couple weeks I've mentioned that my training has started to take a nose-dive. Not exactly in effort (okay, maybe a little) but mostly in performance and "feeling". As in, I've been feeling tired, tight, and run down. Unfortunately, Week #10 didn't show any improvement on that front, and actually, got worse.

Sunday: Rest

Monday: 45 minute 30 minute tempo run
Knowing that I was "short a day" in my training this week, I decided to forgo my easy beginning of the week run and jump straight into my speed work to ensure that it was going to happen this week.

So, off to the gym I went. And by "went", I mean dragging-the-hubby-because-he-really-did-not-want-to-go. I should have just stayed home.

First off, it was about 1,000 degrees in the gym. There are two incredibly huge ceiling fans which were turning at about 1 revolution per minute. Not helpful. And it doesn't help that I'm usually "that sweaty kid" to begin with. But this time, it was just out of control.

Who wants to use the treadmill next?

The run actually started out okay, but about the time I hit the 20 minute or so mark, something was off. My stomach was starting to act all crampy and by the 25 minute mark it was turning into random shooting pains. This isn't the first time this has happened, but usually I'm outside and just slow down to a jog and push through. Yeah, doesn't really work when you're trying to do speed work. At the 28 minute mark it got to the point I had to slow to a walk crawl in hopes that the pain would go away and I could resume my workout. 6 minutes later, I gave my tempo run one more shot -- cranking it back up to speed. Which lasted a whopping 2 minutes before it all came back and I decided to call it quits for the day.

And that was just the start of my week.

Tuesday: 7 x 400m hill work
Since the weather was absolutely gorgeous, and I didn't actually do all my speed work the day before, I decided to bump up my hill work out a day to make sure it got done.

It actually wasn't too horribly bad until I hit hill #4. I'm pretty sure I was moving as slow as molasses in January, and had no motivation to go any faster, much less finish. Somehow, I talked myself into making it the rest of the way up by reminding myself that I only had 2 hills left (not counting the one I would walk) and it was my last hill workout before the race.

I've come to the conclusion that I need to find a new hill. I didn't think it was possible, but it's just too steep. Most programs recommend running at your 5k or 10k pace up the hill during the workout... yeah right. Not on this beast. On the bright side, I have 51 million other hills to choose from around here. :)

Wednesday: 5 mile run
I was tired, and wanted to quit most of the way, but luckily I ran into a friend heading into the final 1.5 miles which gave me a quick break to stop and chat. It was such a nice relief (especially since it was about halfway up my 1 mile climb portion).

Thursday: Indoor Soccer Game + Strength

Friday: 14 mile 10.5 mile run
Since I had a birthday party and was traveling this weekend, I ended up moving my long run up a day. The original plan was sneaking in a 14-miler before my taper, but it just wasn't meant to be. We started off a little faster than normal, but it felt like we were absolutely flying. And not in a good way.

Once we hit about mile 7, I knew I wasn't going to be able to keep up the pace for another 7. I wasn't even sure I could go for another 7. I started coming up with every excuse in the book to shorten my run, and not much else to motivate me to keep going. My legs were tired. I was dehydrated from not drinking enough throughout the week. My hydration belt was annoying the crap out of me. I already ran 13 miles the week before. Blah, blah, blah.

Suffice to say I talked myself out of 14, but I compromised with myself making sure I ran at least 10 before calling it quits. It was probably for the good in the end as I was starting to feel some of the same issues from Monday creeping back up and I'm not sure I would have been able to actually make it another 3.5 if that kicked in full force.

Saturday: Rest

Despite the numerous set-backs and feeling like crap for several of my runs, I did make it through the week. Only TWO MORE to go! I have officially ran my farthest long run, so it should be downhill from here. I can always hope that these next two weeks go much smoother than the past 3, but who knows what's going to happen.


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