Last week was the second week in a row where I went 5-for-5 with early morning wakeups (before work). I feel like I’m in a good groove with the mom/work/running balance. I know it won’t always feel like this so I’m trying to make the most of it while things are working well.
I’ve begun to look ahead and think about fall racing plans. I am leaning towards skipping a fall marathon this year. There are many reasons for this. Truth is, usually about 6-8 weeks out from a marathon, I start feeling like I will take a break, but the excitement and happiness from race day is usually enough to have me signing up for the next one. So I know part of my current thought process is affected by my current feelings towards long runs and the amount of time I’ve been dedicating to Boston.
But one of the biggest reasons is that I (currently) do not want to dedicate Saturday mornings for long runs. Now that I’m working out of the home during the week, our weekends, especially during the warmer months, will be when we do things – go to beach, go on day-trips and so on. I don’t want my training to infringe on those plans.
My personality is all or nothing. It’s hard for me to run marathons for fun or run them easy. I run marathons to run hard. The training and hard work that leads up to the race are a lot of what make me happy. For me and my family, it’s just not worth it for me to run a marathon for fun. I dedicate a lot of time and my family sacrifices time with me in order for me to train hard. And there’s obviously the financial aspect of it. I was tempted to sign up for the NYC Marathon but at $250+, I can’t justify running it for fun.
This is obviously not a finalized decision, but it is something that my husband and I have begun to talk about. I also feel that focusing on shorter distance may be a good thing for me – 5k, 10k, half marathons. I’d be able to do a bunch of half marathons in the fall (Philly, Brooklyn, Vegas) and actually train for and race a half – and see what I can do. And then maybe see what that translates into the following spring.
So knowing that I may not have a fall marathon lined up makes it easier for me to kind of suck it up and work hard for the next 8 weeks until Boston. I know I am going to take it easy after Boston (recovery for a while and then easing back into training) and that makes the early wakeups a bit more bearable right now.
Last week was a pretty successful week. The weekend’s runs got tossed out the window because of the photoshoot, but I hit the two priority runs for the week (Coach Hadley prioritizes the workout so that if runs need to get moved around, I know what he wants me to ensure I get in).
56 total miles (+/- a few because I ran a ton on Sunday and didn’t include most of it in the totals). More miles on treadmill than I would have liked, but my husband was away, so it was the only option for most of the week.
Monday, Wednesday, Thursday
7, 8, 7 miles
Easy miles – most averaged between 8:10-8:20. That range seems to be what my body is gravitating towards most easy/recovery days. Although, I try to not pay attention to pace (when I’m outside) and just let the pace come naturally.
Tuesday: First wave tempo
Planned: 2 up, 5 miles alternating 6:55 (1/2 mile) and 6:25-6:30 (1/2 mile), 2 down
Actual: 10 @ 7:18
Wow. If you are looking for a fun, but challenging workout, try a wave tempo. Holy moly. This was tough but so rewarding. You are basically teaching your body to use the slower range as a recovery pace. And it’s amazing how much slower it feels after your first “fast” portion.
I started on the conservative side. I’ve never done a wave tempo and the faster range had my eyes popping out of my head. I didn’t want to jump into paces and then blow up by the 3rd or 4th mile.
Here’s how the workout went down:
6:58, 6:31 (these are paces I ran)
Yes, there are 6. Plan called for 5. But, after the 3rd, my arm swung and pulled out the emergency stop. So I had to turn treadmill back on and wait for it to start again. All told, it was probably about 20 seconds of just waiting. I was annoyed with myself and felt like I had cheated the workout. So decided to add one more for good measure.
I kept the recovery portion pretty consistent. I felt that it was pretty close to the limit of what I could run and still feel recovered for the faster portion. And so I focused on picking up the pace for the faster portions.
6 total miles: 6:39 average pace – with one quick stop in the middle
Friday – long tempo
Planned: 4 moderate, 8 tempo, 4 moderate (16 total miles)
Actual: 16 miles @ 7:13 average pace (middle 8 @ 6:49)
I have a love/hate relationship with long tempos. They are often the toughest workout of the week when they are on the schedule, but it’s been so rewarding to see the improvement over the last year. And I’m a big believer that these tempos pay off HUGE on race day. Incorporating some AT tempo miles in the middle is tough during training – but it makes marathon goal pace feel much easier. My pace for the tempo portion has been dropping each week I do these workouts (over summer it was every three weeks but right now it’s every other week). And thus, it’s also helping pull down my marathon goal pace.
One of the reasons I love keeping a training log is the ability to look back and see what I was doing a year ago. Sometimes I get so focused on where I want to go that I forget how far I’ve come in the last year. And so, I can easily look at my training log (in excel) and see workouts, paces and mileage – that aligns with the same week of training for last year’s Boston Marathon.
Last year, I did a 16 mile long tempo (with 8 in middle) – and my splits were about 20 seconds slower for the tempo.
This week’s tempo miles were: 6:58, 6:53, 6:53, 6:53, 6:48, 6:48, 6:44, 6:35
The entire run was at 1% incline – and I threw in 30-60 second “climbs” at 1.5%-2.5% incline.
Saturday – unplanned rest day
Should have been 5-6 easy recovery miles, but we filmed from first thing in AM until late afternoon and then my family and I went over my mom’s to celebrate my great-aunt’s 98th birthday! Aunt Connie is truly one of the most special, amazing women in my life!
Sunday – ~8 miles
Lots of running on Sunday – 14 hours of filming (of running) to be exact – with a lot of it either on the beach or running really hard.
Hope you are having a great week! =)