1) 9 weeks = I’m halfway through my training cycle!
2) Grandma’s Marathon is 2 MONTHS from tomorrow!
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that tomorrow is Boston Marathon Day! I’m so happy for all my friends who, after all their hard work, are running it or have qualified. It seems like every year I know more people running Boston! And of course I am always anxious to see who wins – I’m particularly excited to see how Shalane and Desi do this year.
But I’d be lying if I didn’t mention that it’s also bittersweet. Maybe this is a selfish thing to say, but watching all the Boston excitement every year and not being a part of it makes it feel like I’m never gonna get there. It’s a humbling reminder of just how hard it is to qualify for Boston, and how it’s still so far away and I have so much work and waiting to do before it’s my turn – if it ever is.
MP/Speed endurance Run
8 miles (with w/u and c/d)
8:55, 8:33, 8:20, 8:14, 8:20, 8:21; avg pace – 8:28
I decided it would be a refreshing change to try to do one of these runs by feel – to practice getting into a rhythm and holding a pace on my own. Being able to run at a consistent pace is the best skill I can cultivate to perform well at the marathon.
I ended up a little speedier than MP. I could tell I was running faster than MP but that pace felt very comfortable (by comfortable I don’t mean easy, I mean it felt rigorous but not difficult). So I wanted to keep going – again, the point being that I want to practice being consistent. It worked – you can see how I was warming up for the first couple miles and the last 4 were very consistent!
Easy Run – ran home from work
6 miles, 9:10 average
Impromptu tempo-ish run
6 Miles (with w/u, c/d)
8:20, 8:18, 8:07, 8:11; avg pace – 8:14
I was supposed to run easy today, but I just could not bear the thought of plodding along for 6 slow miles on a Thursday night. So I decided to do some pace miles tonight and do Friday’s 8-miler as an easy run.
Once again I did it by feel and I was really surprised at the end. That is a lot faster than I thought I was running. It really didn’t feel like I was running faster than I did on Tuesday night but, I was.
I know – I broke the rules. But sometimes I feel like training is killing my love of running. Runs like this – just going out there, pushing myself a bit, feeling exhilarated at the end – remind me why I love to run. In the doldrums of training, I really need those reminders, wherever I can get them. You know?
8 Miles, 9:01 average
Confession: only about 2/3 of this was actually easy. The first 4 were easy, then I decided to crank it up just a smidge in the 2nd half and try to get near goal pace. I was running in the high 8s for my last few miles. I tried to get mile 8 right at 8:35 and ended up running it in 8:24. Whoops.
Long Slow Distance Run
16 miles (2 part: 6.5 miles, 9.5 miles)
Part I – 9:46 average; Part II – 9:29 average; total average: 9:36
Awful. Probably the worst long run I’ve had this training cycle.
I decided to meet up with my running group, and break the long run into two parts by running to our meeting spot (6.5 miles) and doing the remaining 9.5 with the group.
I basically rolled out of bed, got dressed, filled my Nathan pack with water and went. It was not even 13 hours after I had run an 8 miler. My legs, unaccustomed to having to run this early in the morning let alone with no warm up, felt like lead. The 6.5 miles to the park where I was meeting my running group were mostly uphill and THE WIND was against me the whole way.
I met my group at the park and I thought having only 9.5 miles left wouldn’t seem so bad. But I was tired and I just really didn’t want to be there. No one was running at my pace so I spent 90% of the run alone and I needed a big ol’ slice of mental toughness pie to force myself through it. The miles just DRAGGED. And then I started having a little bit of intestinal issues. Which is weird because that has NEVER happened to me on a long run. It wasn’t so bad that I couldn’t make it through my run, but, come on. I ran a positive split for this part of the long run and I didn’t even care because I just wanted the torture to end.
I know I’m not supposed to care about pace for long runs, but I’m a little disappointed because I was secretly hoping that I’d average 9:30 or better for all of my long runs this cycle…and now that’s ruined. Grr.
During those miserable miles I kept thinking “what if race day is like this?? All that hard work and I get a day like today that I’m so tired I have to shuffle through the miles??”
So, yeah, today kinda sucked.
Week 9 TOTAL MILEAGE: 44
Week 9 Grade: B-
This week we learn what happens when you don’t follow the training plan! Easy runs are kept easy for a reason! No regrets, though. I know that wasn’t the only reason, or even the main reason, I had a crappy long run. Sometimes you just need to break the rules. Especially if it’s the only thing that’s keeping you sane in a long, monotonous week of running.
Looking Ahead: Week 10
Tuesday 4/21 – 5×1 mile repeats – 9 miles total
Wednesday 4/22 – 5 easy
Thursday 4/23 – 5 easy
Friday 4/24 – 9 w/ 7 @ MP
Saturday 4/25 – 20 LSD (it’s time!!)
TOTAL planned mileage: 48
I can’t believe it’s already time for a 20-miler. I plan to do this one on my own and just grind it out. Hoping for nice weather and a much smoother long run than last week.
Looking forward to a good Week 10. Sorry this post was so negative today. Thanks for listening!