Weekly Update: August 21-28

This week was, perhaps, the most successful week of running I’ve had since the marathon and before (back in April). I don’t know how, but I ended up in a training rut after the Hamburg marathon, opting for a laissez-faire approach that I’m giving up again in favor of the standard marathon training.

I’m starting with the normal five days of training with two quick days, two easy days, two rest days, and a log run to round out the week. My long run is reverting back to 10 miles, and it will be a steady increase with 10, 11, 12, 10, 12, 13, 14, 10, 14, 15, 16, 12, 16, 17, 18, 12, 18, 19, 20, 10, 20, and then two weeks to taper. It’s a good thing I’m starting now, because seeing how it builds up so slowly, I will want to make sure I get started right away!

I find that I really need to get into things slowly to prevent injury. It doesn’t mean that I can’t up the mileage on my daily runs, but I know that being careful about how fast I increase how much I run will be key to getting me healthy to the start of my fourth marathon.

Along the way, I want to do a few races. I’m thinking of a 10-miler in October and a half-marathon in December (since the marathon I’m planning for is on Valentine’s Day). Funnily enough, that sets me up for a 2-month cycle and is another thing that I hope means I’m not setting myself up for injury.

Now, for the recap!

My last rest-day was a week ago. Since then, my runs were an easy home-improvement wrap-up run (covered in white paint and everything) in my local park for 4 miles, an easy run to the beach for almost 7 miles, an easy Monday 4 miler, an interval session on the treadmill at the gym for 5K (.75 mile warm-up, and five intervals of 400 meters maxing at 10 mph, 400 meters jog-rest), an easy 5 miler on Wednesday, and another interval session yesterday.

Of the runs I did this week, yesterday’s run was my favorite. I don’t know why, but even though I’ve been dieting a bit this past week (need to get down to training weight after indulging for ten months in my less disciplined habits!), I was super pumped. Perhaps because I went to the gym shortly after my lunch? At any rate, after a half mile warm-up and jumping around from treadmill to treadmill to find the least obnoxious one (and the one that didn’t just stop in the middle of a sprint), I did four sets of progression runs. Basically, these looked like: run 400 meters at 6.5 mph, start moving up for the next 400 from 6.5-8.0 mph, spend the last 400s going at 8.5-10 mph; repeat. I had a few moments where I needed to worry, because my left knee did the weird split-second sharp pain after I increased my speed once, but having the slow progression meant I wasn’t transitioning from jogging to running too quickly. I focused a lot on keeping my form, and I felt awesome keeping my 10 mph for at least .1 of a mile each set.

I was so focused (and about this wet)

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The run ended after 44 minutes with a total of 5.3 miles. I left the gym soaked, but high off adrenaline.

When I got home, I made sure to roll my feet on my orange (a firm ball that has a right orange color that I use to stretch out my plantar fasciiti) and to drink a lot of water to flush out the lactic acid. I felt some strain on my quads near the end of my run, but my soreness this morning is not like it was last week, and definitely far from post-marathon, so I think I’m doing the right thing with this speed-work.

I’m excited about my “long” run tomorrow and decided to pull out the old TomTom runner again. I haven’t run with it in over a month, so I don’t know if it even still works! But it will be interesting to see how my speed holds up outside after all this time. I mostly need it because I don’t know how far 10 miles is from my front door…

Wish me luck!

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Death throes in the month of August

weather

Just great. It’s barely 90 degrees out, but it ” feels like” 101. Typical for a Florida summer… I’m actually surprised at how mild it’s been this past week. The humidity is surprisingly low. But it’s still a bit warm, and I want to go for a run.

I’ll go for a run! But I may wait an hour or two before doing so. It helps that I do have some grading to do.

I’m glad that I am planning to run today, and have been running a little more this past week than the two before this. My last post a week ago stated that I wasn’t going to run anymore unless I felt like it, and it turns out, I’ve been feeling like it a lot. I am not ramping up major mileage, but I am running.

Even better news is that I’ve been running with my inserts lately and they are helping my arches do less stretching during my run, which means I have less pain post run.

I’m going to try using this as a running log and posting more regularly.

I have three goals for the rest of this month and through September
sign-up for running club
build up to 40 miles per week
run a race to gauge my fitness in Florida heat

We’ll see how that goes!

Summer running had me a blast

This post may be a bit random, but please bear with me. I just wanted to get my thoughts out into the world, now that I have decided to break my period of silence and of not blogging about my running.

I’ve slacked a bit on the running front. Not having a training plan and having a crazy busy (but awesome) last weeks in Germany after the semester ended meant that I’ve run sporadically, but I’ve been running. July saw a total of 135 miles… Not really great, but my best mileage this year. I also ran a decent 5K and 10K in May and June: 21:35 and 44:45.

I had a few longer runs throughout the last weeks, but haven’t touched more than 10 miles since the marathon in April. A lot of it was due to time constraints, but I also wasn’t really motivated to get a long run in. Last week, I pushed 8 miles after a 65 mile ride the day before, and 6 miles the following day, but then I had a break of three days before getting in a hectic three miles. That was Saturday. Today it’s Tuesday and I am seriously considering taking the rest of the week (month?) off from running.

Part of my attitude has to do with the leeway I have, and why shouldn’t I take advantage of it? I plan to sign up for the Fort Lauderdale Marathon at the end of February. I figure I can pick up some other races along the way (I’m flirting with the idea of joining a local running club for their Saturday long runs) and use them as gauges of my fitness. But I don’t really need to start training for the marathon until about five months out. That gives me until the end of September.

Another reason for my attitude is that I’ve recently been running only to offset the undisciplined diet I’ve been consuming… a lot of fatty, semi-fast food with too many carbs and not enough time between meals and snacks to just digest. Running to burn calories is a potentially unhealthy correlation to create with running, for sure, and it’s making me a bit unhappy. So I’ve decided to stop for a while, and if I feel the urge to go run because I want to run, then that’s when I’ll do it again.

Finally, I guess, if I’m completely honest, I need a few new pairs of good running shoes (all of mine have 400 miles or more) and it’s making my plantar fasciiti flare up. I’m too poor for new shoes now, so I’ll wait for my first paycheck in my new job as adjunct.

In the meantime, I’ll stay active and swim a lot in the pool, perfect refreshment during south Florida’s hot and humid mornings. Also, who knows? Maybe I will end up going for a run this evening. If I do, it will be because I want to, and not because I have to… there won’t be the stress of having to fit the run in somehow.

It’s a well-deserved break, and I have enough other things to do and take care of right now.