**Check my ING NYC Marathon Recap here**
The last week has been a crazy ride of excitement, nerves, carbs, and marathon goodies. I went on a few short little runs (2-3 miles each) and they were each pretty uneventful. I was just trying to keep my legs moving a bit and didn’t really care to follow the 400 repeats that were on my training schedule.
One thing that was different this week than the previous 15, was my eating habits. I’m generally a good eater but I deliberately cleaned it up a bit this week. I knew that I’d be excited and distracted (and probably not interested in cooking each night) so I basically made my whole week’s worth of meals – for me and my husband – last Sunday. I also wanted to gradually increase my carb consumption all week rather than have a gigantic carby meal the night before the race that would just leave me feeling sluggish.
On the menu? We roasted a TON of sweet potatoes and onions, made turkey chili, and kale strombolis. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for lunch I had roasted sweet potatoes and chicken (each day the serving was larger). Tuesday and Thursday for lunch I had kale strombolis. And each night for dinner we had chili or chili and couscous. In the mornings I had smoothies early in the week, and oatmeal later in the week. This gradual increase worked really nicely. And considering I’d had some stomach issues before a few long runs, I had no problems before the marathon.
All week I was dying to get to the expo to pick up my number and buy a ton of running-related things that I probably don’t need. When Thursday rolled around, I met Emily to head to the Javits Center. I expected lines to be long from the after-work crowd, but we got our numbers in no time. I picked up 2 long sleeve shirts (green Asics, red Mizuno), but that’s it. I was a little disappointed I didn’t walk away with more. But what didn’t disappoint? The diner pancake dinner we had afterwards. Oh yes, pancakes for dinner.
I went on my last little run on Friday night. I felt great, but didn’t have the butterflies I had been feeling all week. I went to bed on Friday night telling myself that when I woke up I could say “I’m running the marathon tomorrow.” Ahhhh!
For the full weekend and marathon recap, check here.
Total Mileage: 32
So the marathon is 26 days away. Well, to be more precise…
And as if I couldn’t stop thinking/talking about for the last four months? Yeah, it’s almost entirely consuming now. (Fine by me).
I’ve gone back and forth for goals this entire training cycle. For my last NY Marathon experience, my goal was just to have a good time and finish under 5. Done. Could I have trained a little better? Yes, a lot better in fact. Could I have run harder? Yep. But I had an awesome time and was totally satisfied with my performance at the time.
Marathon Course Map... which, as of today, lives on the back of my front door.
This time? I think I’m ready for more of a goal. Knowing that I’m more type-B about these things, my goal is still very loose. Making this goal will not make or break my marathon experience. I know, to some that may defeat the purpose of having a goal, but I don’t really care. This is something that I think I’m capable of if my health and the conditions are prime on race day.
- A Goal: 4:15. This would be about 9:44/mile. I think I could do it. Will I? Who knows. It’s my A goal, so if everything goes well, I think this could be within reach.
- B Goal: sub-4:30. This would be an average of about 10:00/mile. I can do this and it will still be a PR.
- Bottom-line Goal: Worst-case scenario, if the wheels fall off on race day, I want to keep things in perspective and have fun. The NYC Marathon is an incredible experience and I really want to enjoy it regardless of how I’m running on November 6.
With one more long run (20 this weekend), I don’t think I’ll need to adjust my goals too much. Can’t believe it’s right around the corner!
Finally! I hit all my workouts this week. No exceptions. It was awesome and I plan on continuing this the rest of the month. Here’s how it went:
- Monday: REST
- Tuesday: 6 miles (2 mile repeats @ 8:11 pace)
- The plan was to wake up early and run, but that didn’t happen. I figured that after work and coaching, I’d probably get a run in, but a shortened one. After practice, I ran 2 miles to the gym and did 2 mile repeats on the treadie (easiest for me to do dreaded mile repeats on the treadie since it sets the pace), then ran 2 miles home. Perfect weeknight run. Clearly, I was very impressed with myself.
- Wednesday: Reformer Pilates
- Thursday: 7 miles (2 miles warm-up, 3 miles tempo – 8:15 pace, 2 miles cooldown)
- I was up in the wee hours for this one and met a group for a run in Van Cortlandt. It was pitch black outside and I was the only one without a headlamp (noted for future morning runs). It’s funny to me that I struggle with mile repeats at 8:11, but can hold 8:15 with this group for 3 miles fairly easily. Must be group dynamic. The only downside? I literally ran home, rinsed off, then took 70 seventh graders on a scavenger hunt field trip all day (oh, my achin feet).
- Saturday: 15 miles
- I was at the shore with family. Got to see the sun rise over the ocean nice and early. This was a super flat run and while it was pretty boring, it went by fairly quickly and was uneventful.
- Total mileage: 28
I really needed a good week (and great weather). This was definitely it. We’re 4 weeks out from the marathon and I have one long run left before the taper (20 this weekend). I’m so excited I can’t stand it, and I definitely feel ready. Now I’m starting to think of the fun stuff (what to wear, where we’re meeting people afterwards, etc). For the last 12 (or more!) weeks, I’ve almost entirely focused on the marathon. It’s funny that now it’s so close I can see life after the marathon, haha.
So last week, I decided to make a more concerted effort to get my weekday runs in. They’ve all but completely fallen off the radar in the month of September. It almost happened this week. Almost.
It’s annoying because I want to run. And I don’t intended for this to be a waaa waaa I’m so busy there’s never any time sorta thing. But, I’m literally standing at work from 7:30am until after 4. And a few days from 4-6:30 when I go right to coach. So really, after standing that long my feet are killing me. I learned this week that as early as it needs to be, I have to go back to running first thing in the morning (hello, 5am). Otherwise, I won’t get it done at the end of the day… or like my sad attempt at evening speedwork on the track after coaching XC, it will be seriously lacking.
Lesson learned. I’ll be up and out bright and early this week. The good news is that this totally legitimizes my ridiculously early bedtime.
So week 11? Broken record. Not enough during the week. Seriously long run on the weekend. To be more specific, I logged a measly 4 miles during the week in a pathetic track session after work and coaching. My long run? Felt worse than it was.
Highlights of the week? The ridiculously fun afternoon beer-fest dance party that M and I had in the living room after my 20. Also, the massage I had today = awesome. Already booked another in two weeks after my last 20-miler. And I’ll probably book a third for the day after the marathon. My little recovery run this evening was pretty nice too.
Looking back over the last 11 weeks, my training has been much more awesome than sucky. It’s less than stellar that the last, say, 3 or so weeks have sucked — I’d really like to finish up my training as strong as I started. Let’s hope going back to morning runs does the trick…
So here I am, 61 days away from the marathon. About 9 more weeks of training. I’m nearly at the halfway point in my training. And while last week was less than stellar, this week was downright awful.
Seven reasons I know this week’s training was just… bad.
- I ran 11 miles this week. I was supposed to hit 26. Yikes.
- There was just plain no long run this week. Period. I considered doing it today, but with starting school and having to head to Philly mid-week for family stuff, it won’t fit my schedule. I think starting fresh on week 8 is what’s best for me right now anyhow.
- Someone found my blog by searching “marathon training gone bad.” I hope you found what you were looking for.
- I had to stop Wednesday’s tempo run after 4 miles when I felt shooting pain in my lower back (left side only). Then couldn’t bend over to get a drink at the water fountain on my way home. Silver lining? Seems to have been just a pulled muscle and after extensive stretching all weekend it feels completely fine.
- Did I mention I just plain skipped my long run? Yep.
- The entire week consisted of 11 miles (7 miles speedwork on the track, which was admittedly awesome; 4 miles almost-tempo), 2 Reformer Pilates classes, 1 Core Fusion class. At least I finally did some strength/cross-training!
- After 4 days of not running at all, I looked in the mirror and nearly convinced myself that my normally strong runner legs were starting to look soft. Ack.
So what next? Well, I’m glad my back feels fine and it actually didn’t turn out to be something major. I’m telling myself that it was a good thing that I didn’t do my long run this week, which may or may not be true. After 2 crappy weeks in a row, morale is a little low. I have 18 miles on the schedule for Saturday and am really looking forward to it. I don’t like repeatedly falling short.
So I feel a liiiittle short of my intended weekly mileage. By ten miles. Yep, I was supposed to hit 30 miles this week, but I came in with a whopping 20. And I wish I could blame it all on the Bronx Half being cancelled and hurricane Irene, but that’s not really the case.
After last Sunday’s great 18-miler, I took Monday as a rest day. Tuesday, I was back on the track for some speed work. It was a really nice change of pace to run in some cooler, drier fall-like weather (excited for more in the next few weeks). Wednesday I did a double-header at Core Fusion w/ a cardio class followed by slow flow yoga. I loved this combo and both classes were great. Then the wheels fell off… Thursday morning I was sore from yesterday’s cardio class and skipped my morning run, figuring I’d do it later that night. It was also around this time that information about the hurricane started to materialize. I started to think that maybe I wouldn’t/shouldn’t run the Bx Half on Sunday, and started to come up with a back-up plan… long story short, the race was cancelled and I didn’t have a great back-up plan. Or at least I didn’t follow the plan.
Here’s how it actually went:
- Monday: 1 mile easy shake-out w/ husband
- Tuesday: Speedwork on the track – 2×1200, 4×800 w/ 1 mile warm-up, 1 mile cool down (times posted on Daily Mile).
- Wednesday: Core Fusion Cardio, Slow Flow Yoga
- Thursday: NOTHING
- Friday: NOTHING
- Saturday: 13.1 miles
- Sunday: NOTHING
So there’s my 20 mile week. When I actually should have had a 20-mile run this weekend. Yikes. I’m fine with cutting back a couple miles, but this was a bit much and I could have planned a little better.
I’m well aware that this week’s crappy mileage will not greatly impact my training overall. I do worry, however, about time management with workouts as school starts up. If I’m not getting all my workouts in now, I’ll need to step it up a bit when school begins and my schedule gets a little crazy.
Did the hurricane through off your plans this weekend?
I feel like a broken record talking about how I’ve been slacking on cross-training and need to do better with it. (So I won’t say it again).
I did pretty well on my running workouts this week. “Pretty” meaning that I held on tight to my track workout (and it was mile repeats! I KNOW!), and I feel pretty badass about this morning’s 18-miler. The tempo run was meh, and a mile short, but whatevs. At least I didn’t go on a mid-week bender this time! (Baby steps, haha…)
Since I had several, ahem, rest days this week, here’s how it went:
- Speedwork: The plan called for 3 mile repeats at 8:11 pace. Mile repeats a little bit make me wanna barf. I really like speedwork except for mile repeats. I did this workout, stayed right on pace, and had another 2 miles for warm-up and cool down. It felt sooo much better than a few weeks ago when I did the same exact workout. Definitely stronger. Still not a fan of the mile repeats, though.
- “Tempo” Run: This is in quotes because it is still a tempo run, but not exactly the tempo run I had planned. I did a nice conversational 2 mile warm-up, then ran 3 miles at 10k pace. Aaaand that’s it. I was totally over it.
- Long Run: Truly the highlight of my week (seriously, but I might not have said that at mile 15…). This coincided nicely with the NYRR Long Training Run #2. I ran 3 miles before the event in Central Park, then banged out 15 in the park (3 5-mile loops to avoid Harlem Hills). My training plan called for 9:30 pace. I thought this seemed a bit quick for my long run, so I decided to just get in the mileage and see where the pace wound up. I ran the first loop on my own – when I got to the transverse, I saw that I was roughly around a 9:30 pace, and ran with that pace group the second time. Solo the last loop taking a few more water breaks since it was getting hot. Felt great at the end. Averaged 9:33/mile. Perfect.
- Total miles: 28. Almost want to go out and slog for 2 miles just to get to 30. Almost.
As I said last week, week 5 was a bit more “back to normal” for me. While that means I still found ways to slack on cross-training, I did not party like a college kid mid-week. Or go to a wedding. So sorta normal, I guess.
Notable: I did not drink at all the 2 nights before the long run. I’m not talking like drankin but I even skipped a glass of wine w/ dinner. This may be a good move. Also, I enlisted friends come over and help me carbo load on Saturday night… they were not running at all on Sunday, but who doesn’t love a good carb load? And it seems all the more justifiable when shared with others, right?
Week 6 will bring a whopping 20-miler that I will do in conjunction w/ the Bronx Half-Marathon. Not sure how I’ll split the additional 7 miles yet, but we shall see. Other than that, I think I fueled really well this week – the 1-2 days before the long run, during, and after. I’ll focus on that again next week. And we’ll see about the cross-training, but it can only get better after last week.
Week 3 of training was a good one, complete with a long run with new faces and some very interesting cross-training. I didn’t get all my workouts in… I didn’t hit my mileage (that happens when you completely skip your tempo run)… I took the whole weekend off as a giant rest day. Ah well, I’ll call on the “80% rule” for this one. Not a stellar week for workout consistency, but it worked.
Here’s how it went:
- Monday: Speedwork on the track — definitely my most challenging track workout thus far. Hit the gym to do some lifting: biceps and back; kettlebells and push ups were also involved
- Tuesday: Yoga at home (this was a goal!); Gym for shoulders and legs
- Wednesday: SURFING! Was supposed to squeeze in a tempo run, but it didn’t happen. Surfing was awesome and totally worth it!
- Thursday: Quick 2-miler
- Friday: Long run (16.5)
- Saturday and Sunday: NOTHING!
Total Mileage: 24 (possibly related number: 1 toenail missing. I’m sure this doesn’t bode well for the next 14 weeks… already lost a toenail in week 3? Yikes.)
I’ve been shifting my long runs to Fridays because I’ve had weddings or travel plans on the weekends. It’s pretty nice to get it out of the way. I’m now totally sold on completing my long runs w/ others and feel like I’ve been spoiled the past two weeks. This Friday, my 16.5 was made much more pleasant w/ company. I met up w/ Dori and we caught up w/ Ashley, Bo, and Jess for a bit too. The miles definitely went by more quickly than they might have if I’d been solo.
I’ve always trained on my own. And raced on my own, too. I remember how incredible it felt at the start of 2008′s NYC Marathon when I realized that after logging so many miles alone, I was suddenly a part of something much bigger.
After deferring the NYCM for two years because I just couldn’t get myself together, I decided to make some changes for my training this year. A big one was running with others. Mostly for motivational purposes, but logging long runs with buddies, and the tempo runs I’ve run with groups have also increased my confidence and made me a bit faster. A welcome bonus, for sure.
Which means that my first week of training = total suckfest, haha.
I chose sleeping in (sweet sexy air conditioning) over getting up and out the door for a run at 6am. Twice. So this afternoon I will once again grace the treadmill for some miles. Awesome.
How’s running been for you this week? (Feel free to complain).
AND, giveaway winner is Kelly from Meals for Miles! Kelly, send me your info and I’ll send along the book and belt.
Today I had planned on running 10-12 miles. It would be my longest run in preparation for the Brooklyn half in two weeks. I typically don’t go over 9-10 miles before a half, but I have the time and I’ve been running well lately so why not.
I’ve mentioned many times how running in the summer heat and humidity has derailed my running (and contributed to my dropping the NYC Marathon one year). Today was a beautiful day. Not too hot (70s, I think) and not humid. Pretty much perfect running weather.
Here’s how it went down:
- I planned on taking it easy this morning and heading out when I felt ready. Typically, this would be around 8-9ish. But after a late night w/ both a Derby party and birthday party, I slept later than usual (but thankfully, did not have to deal w/ hangover).
- To make it more of an outing, I decided that this would be a runmute to the grocery store. M would meet me there and we’d get our groceries for the week. We’d done this sort of thing before and it’s worked out well.
- I mapped my route from my apartment all the way down the greenway to 59th St. From there I’d head back uptown to Whole Foods on 97th. This is about 12 miles.
What went wrong:
- I didn’t leave until 1pm. This is when the sun is strong and there’s virtually no shade to run under. For someone who is not a big fan of running in warm weather, this was kind of a nightmare.
- At the parties yesterday, I wore summer sandals. This was the first time I’d worn sandals since last year. While the platform wedges were really cute, they left me with monster blisters – two. And once I started running, I developed two more where there had once been hot-spots. Nice.
- I underestimated how warm I’d get and did not plan to carry water. For the first half of my run, my mouth was incredibly dry and I felt like I was running from water fountain to water fountain.
- I never really got into a rhythm. See above.
- As a result of these things, I cut about 2 miles off the run… which was fine by me and still fell into my goal mileage for the day.
Moral of the Story:
- Run in the morning. I really think that my water issues would not really have been an issue had I been running about 3 hours earlier.
- Don’t wear sandals the day before a long run.
- This wasn’t a great run, but it wasn’t terrible. The weather was nice and it went by really fast. Even a “bad” run can sometimes be pretty good.
In other news, apparently Friday was the day to begin signing up for transportation to the NYC Marathon. No email was sent, and I only realized when someone mentioned it on twitter. Anyone get an email? Anyone have issues choosing a time slot?