After next week, I will be officially half-way through my training! It is amazing to look back and remember that less than two months ago, I didn’t know if my IT band was going to cooperate and let me train for this race at ALL.
Monday, Rest Day.
I decided to push my run day back one day, still exhausted from the 15-miler on Saturday, my long day on Sunday, and recovering in general from Daylight Savings Time. The change in time really messed me up, but I think I’m back to normal now!
Tuesday, Ran 3.5 miles.
My first run post-DST so it got darker earlier, which is a bit disconcerting to me but I run in a safe place. The weather here has been alternating between cold and warm/humid, and this day was a humid one. I wore my Jazz Half Marathon shirt for the first time! I never run in race shirts because they never fit right or comfortably, but this one does! My pace was not as speedy as last week, when I ran 4 miles at an 8:29 pace, but I also didn’t have my husband along to push me. Nonetheless this run was tough. Maybe the humidity made it harder, but it was a challenge. I guess that’s good – you’re supposed to work hard, especially on the speed runs! When I first started this run, I was behind a guy who was walking alone and dancing to the music he was listening to on his headphones. It was really funny.
Wednesday, Pilates and Yoga, 40 minutes
I did Pilates for 20 minutes, first a workout focused on the lower body, and then a stretching workout. Then I did the 20-minute Power Foundations yoga program by Rodney Yee. I think as my mileage gets higher and I am working harder on my pace, I want to start incorporating Pilates into my training weeks more often.
Thursday, Ran 8 miles.
On Thursday I got off work early and got to do my 8-miler at around 1:30 instead of 5:30. Normally this would have been great, but I had to deal with a brutal head wind for the majority of my run. I don’t know if this would have been lessened later in the evening, but if so, it would have been better to do it late! Anyway, I started out a little too fast, with an 8:45 first mile. With the wind and 7 miles remaining, I don’t think this was the smartest move. Here are my splits:
Miles 6-7 completely done against the wind, but I managed to finish strong. I really think my last mile was quicker because I just wanted to be DONE. Desperately.
Friday, Spinning 20 minutes.
Even though Friday was a holiday, I didn’t have much free time at all. I spent four hours Friday morning cleaning our apartment — my husband’s brother and wife were coming into town for a wedding and we were going to babysit their two girls. The apartment needed a serious deep cleaning and to be baby-proofed! After cleaning I ran to the gym and got some spinning in, then came home, showered and met up with the husband, brother-in-law and family for lunch. We were with them until they had to leave for the wedding, after which we were baby-sitting! I hate going to the gym and getting in a minimal workout, but I guess it’s better than nothing.
Saturday, Ran 17 miles.
Aaaahhhh…second week in a row that I’ve run my “longest distance ever.” I have to say that for the most part physically, I was good for the entire run. Yes, I was tired, Yes, sometimes my lungs felt overworked. I did take several untimed breaks for Powerade, Gu chomps, and one bathroom break, which would help me regroup and catch my breath. But there was nothing about this run that made me doubt my ability to finish a marathon two months from now.
Really, the biggest obstacle for me on these long runs is the mental aspect, when in my brain I think,”Why am I doing this?” “I really wish I only had to do 15 miles (or 13 miles or…whatever).” For the last two miles, which brought me past my previous PDR of 15 miles and were the toughest because of how close I was but how far it felt (2 miles?!? Easy right? Not after 15.), I FORCED myself to put out negative thoughts. “Pain is weakness leaving the body” was one thought that helped. It turns pain into a positive thing. My pain was really just fatigue. My right inner ankle hurts every long run, and still hurt well into Sunday afternoon, but it wasn’t something I couldn’t run on. It really was mostly mental for me.
My run was done mostly near LSU campus, where they were preparing for their homecoming game. I ran along Sorority Row, where the houses had decorated their yards, I guess for some kind of contest, and so that was interesting scenery.
The weather was cool and mostly overcast, though I still sweated profusely!
After I got home I did something for the first time – an ICE BATH. It didn’t work out quite as well as planned, because our tub doesn’t produce really cold water! It’s lukewarm at its coolest. I filled up the tub and got in with my running tights still on and a fleece jacket, then my husband dumped a bag of ice in the water. I didn’t know if it was as cold as it should have been since the water was lukewarm, but it felt chilly! I stayed in for 15 minutes.
Then, I put on my new compression socks and wore them the rest of the day!
Sunday, everything felt fine except my ankle, which consistently aches after runs. I think the cold bath and the socks really helped. I know last week I was sore all Saturday and Sunday.
This is my plan for WEEK EIGHT:
I have a bit of a cold and sore throat, and my ankle is still slightly aching this morning, so I may do yoga today and run tomorrow. We’ll see how I feel at 5 p.m. I am doing a 10-mile race on Saturday, so my plan is to get there an hour early and do 3 miles solo before the race starts. I would like to complete the 3 miles at about a 10 minute pace and then aim to do the 10-mile race at a 9:30 pace. We’ll see.