Marathon Training Update: Week 11

This week FLEW BY! I can’t believe it’s already Thursday and Rock ‘n Roll Chicago is 17 days away. The next two weeks are going to go by even faster and the mileage will have to be smart. Rock ‘n Roll will be my 3rd half marathon this year and 4th completed half marathon since I started getting serious about racing last May. It’s kind of crazy that it feels like a routine now. Get up one morning and race 13.1 miles as fast you can? I can do THAT! Here’s how the past week went down:

Thursday, July 21: Tempo Run

I was good about waking up early for this run considering the heat was going to be unbearable later on in the day. I refuse to do the majority of my workouts on the treadmill even when it’s 70-90 degrees because my “winter self” would just say “tsk tsk”. I did a 1 mile warm up and 1 mile cool down with 4 miles at a pace between 8:25-8:35. I avoided looking at the Garmin too often and posted the following splits: 8:41, 8:22, 8:25, 8:14. I couldn’t find much of a rhythm for this run, but I was happy with my splits after I finished.

Saturday, July 23: 13 Mi LSD

Despite the heat that we’ve been having lately, Saturday morning was the perfect day for me to do a long run. It was overcast the entire time, slightly muggy, but there was a breeze along the lake. My goal for this run was to be consistent and add 2 minute surges every three miles to keep the legs fresh. I ran 12.95 miles in 1:55 and realized something amazing on my bus ride home (stopped at Starbucks for a grande iced coffee–which totally hit the spot!). I ran my first marathon in 1:56. That day I was racing. The longest run I had done before the Indy Mini was probably about 8 miles and it was a struggle. I lacked the motivation to get out there, but knew that I had a goal to finish the half in under two hours. I was determined, but I didn’t commit to the mileage or to fueling myself properly. This past Saturday, on the other hand, was a training run. In my mind, I was going out for a light jog and ended up posting the same time as a race about a year prior. It’s always nice to see how far you’ve come in terms of personal goals. I love that I’m seeing results!

LADIES ONLY: This was my first long run in just a sports bra. And I have to say, I need to do that more often. It was so liberating and I felt so…FREE! No wonder guys run shirtless all the time! Brady wrote an awesome post about running topless on Loving the Run a few weeks ago. Both honest and hilarious. I’ll be running topless more often…well, not topless!

Monday, July 25th: Tempo Run

Another tempo on the books. Coach wanted me to post the tempo miles at an 8:15-8:30 pace. I intended to do this in the early morning before work, but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. So after work, I laced up my shoes and headed out. And it felt weird to run in the evening! I definitely have more kick in my legs in the morning, which I never thought would be the case. I wouldn’t consider myself a morning person just yet, but I’m acclimating to being a morning runner. I don’t have to be nice to you in the morning, but my legs will be nice to me! I felt out of sync for this run (*most likely because it was in the evening) but was able to push the pace a little bit and persevere through a high heart rate: 8:07, 8:12, 8:05, 8:11.

Tuesday, July 26th: Slow jog

I had a really rough day on Wednesday. Attempting to deal with drama when you’re a drama-free person just takes the wind out of you, sometimes. I got a delivery from Running Warehouse and after trying out the singlets I bought, I felt the urge to go for a run. Kept it nice and slow, but the adrenaline and endorphins helped me work through some things by the time I got home less than a half hour later. Running is the ultimate therapy!

Thursday, July 28th: 8 x 800s

I didn’t wake up early this morning for my speed workout, but I’ll be pushing it in the heat tonight. The air is humid and “rainforesty” today, so it will be a good test. I was tempted to go to the gym for the first time in three months and do them on the treadmill, but Coach wants me to prepare for the potential heat at Rock ‘n Roll. Should be doing eight 800 meter repeats at 3:45 (or faster) with 400 meter recovery in between. Look out for my update next week to see how I handled it!

In other news, Ryan Hall has announced he is going to be running the Chicago Marathon this year. I was exited to see yesterday that he will be making his only public appearance this week at Fleet Feet at Piper’s Alley tonight at 5:30. Sweet!

-J

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