And so the journey begins! Week 1 of a 14-week training cycle and I’m feeling better than I’ve felt in weeks. After being ‘cleared’ to run by my physical therapist last week, I was excited to get some quality runs in but also nervous about not overdoing it. I only ran 48 miles in the month of December which is (by FAR) my lowest mileage month of 2013. Taking two weeks off running was more challenging that I anticipated. It’s really easy to take running for granted when your body has never told you to stop completely for 14 days. But for that time, I was really happy to be able to cross train in other ways and I’ve found a new love–spinning. I’d love to be able to commit to at least one spin class per week through this next training cycle (I honestly think it’s done wonders for my turnover).
So, after resting, cross-training, reflecting, and trying to keep myself busy in other ways (mainly visiting coffee shops and drinking copious amounts of beer!), I’m ready and excited to get on a normal training schedule. I think I was beginning to go crazy without a consistent plan, to be honest.
Just as I normally do, I only ran 4 times this week.
Monday: 6 miles (2 mile warm-up, 2 miles at 7:08 min/mile, 2 mile cooldown). This run was really all about testing my legs and my left hip to see if all systems were GO for the training cycle. Felt good to sweat it out on something other than a bike!
Tuesday: rest (business trip)
Wednesday: Easy 5 miles. This run was the best kind of therapy. It was sunny, 45 degrees, and downright balmy so I went out for a lunchtime run. My ‘easy’ pace doesn’t seem to have dropped much because my average pace was 8:02. Wahoooo!
Thursday: 4 x 800s. This was another “test run” to see if I can handle the training. And I’m happy to report that it went really well! I ran a long warm-up and then focused on turnover for 4 x 800 meters with 3 min recoveries. I didn’t look at the pace shown on my watch and just tried to run consistently through each repeat. When I arrived home and uploaded my Garmin data, I realized that I’d run the 800s at the same pace as I had back in August. Now that’s a good feeling!
Friday: Last physical therapy session! ‘Nuff said.
Saturday: Long run! Again, 50 degrees in Chicago in the middle of January. It’s just crazy out there. The lakefront was full of people running long and it felt like a bustling summer morning when people are preparing for fall marathons. I wore shorts and a light long sleeve shirt but easily could have managed with a regular shirtsleeve shirt. I ran 11 miles at 7:56 pace and I felt so comfortable the entire run. My knee drive especially feels much stronger than it did back in November and December.
Sunday: 85% of today was spent horizontal on the couch. It was bliss.
Photo Round-up of the Week:
Cool view of the Chi skyline looking east just after take-off on a business trip
Good morning DC!
So dramatic. She must have had a busy day at home
Coffee shop smiles
A little bit of happiness