Footprints: Monday Morning Recap

This week had some highs and lows, but ended on a high note and I got in nearly 55 miles so all in all it was good stuff! I need to absolutely focus more on strength training as other than daily P90X core workouts (I won’t list them each day since I put it here!), I only got in one strength workout this week. After struggling with speed workouts during the week, I had probably my best run of the whole training cycle for my long run Sunday, so I’m hoping to carry that momentum into this week.

Here’s the day-by-day breakdown:

Monday: I kicked Monday off with a lunchtime run to the gym for an easy 6 on the treadmill.

We actually got a little snow on Monday!

We actually got a little snow on Monday!

Tuesday: Rest day!

Wednesday: I hit up the gym after work for a ladder speed session. After a 1.5 mile warm-up, I ran a 400, 800, 1200, 1600, 1200, 800, 400 ladder with a 400 recovery jog between each repeat. I started strong, but partway through the mile just could not keep up with the pace I wanted and had to dial it down a bit. I was able to finish strong with my last 400, but the second 1200 and 800 were a bit slower than I wanted leaving me a little discouraged.

Thursday: Today was an easy 7 miler on the treadmill that breezed by. I felt really good and followed it up with a short upper body workout.

Friday: I finally braved the cold temperatures for an easy-paced 8 miler after work along the Mt. Vernon trail. I finished at a good clip, but my legs felt really heavy and tired for the second half of the run. If it weren’t so cold out it probably would have taken me a lot longer to finish, but I wanted to get back inside! I somehow actually overdressed for this with a tank, my Oiselle wazzie wool baselayer and a jacket. I completely sweat through all three layers and that wind did not feel good for the last few miles!

Saturday: I put in 10 miles on the treadmill at the gym hoping to hit 7 of them at marathon pace. I could only get 5 in before a side stitch got the best of me and I had to go a bit slower than planned. I was a bit down about this after my previous speed workout hadn’t gone so well either and was not looking forward to Sunday’s long run at all.

Sunday: On paper I did everything wrong for this 14 mile run. I overslept so I didn’t have time to get my run in first thing. Ian and I had lunch at Buffalo Wild Wings so we could watch the Packers-Cowboys game, and I drank a giant soda and didn’t exactly eat lightly or healthily. After about an hour trying to let my stomach settle I headed for the gym, put the Broncos game (disappointing) on my little treadmill TV and hit play on Pandora on my phone. I started slow thinking I would just trudge it out. With the Hanson’s plan, my long runs are supposed to be a bit faster than easy pace, but of course slower than marathon pace. By a mile in I had gotten within a few seconds of my target pace and somehow I kept getting stronger as I went along! This was just what I needed and a big-time confidence booster.

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2015 Here We Go!

Wow, 2015 is here! I’m kicking things off with a 5k and then heading to Ocean City for a weekend with friends – a great way to start off the year!

One of my Oiselle Secret Santa gifts was the Believe Training Journal (signed by Lauren Fleshman!), so I spent some serious time thinking out and writing down my goals for the year. A great way to keep yourself accountable is sharing your goals, so here goes…

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My 2015 Running Goals:

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  • Qualify for Boston
  • Race the B&A Trail Marathon- it’s a smaller race, so I have a legit shot of coming near the top of the pack for women finishers
  • Break 20 minutes in a 5k (this is my big and scary stretch goal!)
  • Run 2,015 miles in 2015

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What will it take?

  • Consistency – I need to stick to my training plans and get out there and do the work. I also need to stay focused and not let up during my off seasons.
  • Staying healthy – keeping up with stretching, foam rolling and icing will be key. I also need to listen to my body and be smart about when to push the gas and when to take a break.
  • Getting stronger – I need to get in my daily core workouts and hit the weight room, and not just focus on running.
  • Get speedy – lots of speed work and pushing the pace will be required!
  • Schedule and plan – building my runs into my daily schedule and planning ahead will help keep me on track.
  • Pay more attention to nutrition – I can’t expect to produce great results with crappy fuel.
  • Mental toughness – enough said!

Footprints: Monday Morning Recap

I just wrapped up my fourth week of marathon training and so far I’ve done a great job of staying on track. I’ve completed 22 of my 24 planned workouts and am almost completely recovered from my cold/flu that disrupted most of last week. My paces are still not where they need to be at all for tempo and track workouts, but the endurance is definitely back. I’m hoping when I reassess in four weeks that I’ll be feeling better about the pacing. All in all I would call this a pretty good week. I tallied nearly 45 miles and felt pretty strong doing it.

Here’s the day-by-day breakdown:

Monday: I ran home from work Monday putting in nearly 7 miles. I kept it at an easy pace and felt good. This also marks the 3rd run a stranger told me I looked like I was lit up like a Christmas tree. I’m never really sure how to answer that, so I just smiled and said thanks, I’m trying to get into the holiday spirit, haha.

Tuesday: Rest day.

Wednesday: I had planned to put in my interval workout on my run home today, but my stomach was feeling off all afternoon so I decided to just do another one of my easy runs. I made it the nearly 7 miles home from work, but it did not feel good at all. On top of my stomach pains I didn’t dress nearly warm enough for the cold temps and strong wind so I was absolutely freezing by the time I got home. This was really my only bad run of the week though and I’m glad I battled through it. It does help when that is your only way home!

Thursday: We had our holiday lunch at work on Thursday and then got to leave early. I was so excited about the chance to run in daylight on a weekday that I still did my tempo run despite having three kinds of pasta for lunch! I put in 8 miles total with 6 at tempo pace. Similar to last week, my tempo pace is still not where it needs to be, but I felt like this was a good, soild run and I will keep working on bringing the times down. The run was also followed with a Oiselle holiday treats happy hour and dinner at Shake Shack (Ian’s blog is back with a review of Shake Shack – check it out!!), which makes any day great!

Oiselle

Friday: I made up for that missed speed workout on Tuesday and put in 7 total miles along the Mt. Vernon Trail. After a 1.25 mile warm-up, I cranked out 6 half mile repeats with quarter mile recovery jogs in between. My paces were a bit all over the place, but made sense when factoring in hilly sections. My fastest ones were right where I need to be, which pleasantly surprised myself a bit. Now I need to work on consistency.

Saturday: I was up early for an easy 8 miler and had a great run with some sunshine along Four Mile Run & W&OD Trails.

Sunday: Today was basically a repeat of Saturday with 8 easy miles. No sunshine today, but it was a few degrees warmer putting the feels like in the 30s instead of the 20s! I headed in the other direction for this run that took me along the W&OD and Custis Trails.

Workout of the Week

Last week I wrapped up week 2 of my half marathon training program. I’m putting it in the books as another successful week and am really starting to feel like my fitness is coming back.

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I got in a little more than 40 miles, although technically my long run didn’t happen until this week, I’m still going to count it for the last one! It was supposed to happen on Sunday, but my bachlorette party was also over the weekend and well, let’s just say I didn’t really feel up to running long on Sunday!

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My runs this week took me through D.C. in the early morning, along some running trails I haven’t hit up in awhile and by the waterfront in Hoboken featuring stunning views of the NYC Skyline, so needless to say there was a bit of competition for my favorite workout this week.

halfweek2

Hands down it was my lone speed workout of the week, which took place after work on Wednesday. I made an unfortunate decision to sleep in that morning instead of going to the track. I set up a workout of 400 yard repeats with 400 yard recovery jogs in my Garmin and watched anxiously as I waited for the clock to hit five and saw the skies turning increasingly gray!

It was just sprinkling when I set out for the trail though that leads from the office to my apartment. After roughly a mile warm-up I started my repeats. As I progressed though, so did the rain until it was monsooning and I was getting pelted with rain. It might be the hardest rain I’ve ever run through. My clothes were drenched and my shoes were sloshing with water.

For some reason though I could not stop smiling. Everyone else on the trail was so friendly and seemed to be having the same experience as me – well except for the bikers, they seemed pretty grumpy. There were high fives, laughs and smiles exchanged and jokes yelled out about what a beautiful day it was to run as I passed others along the trail. It was a blast.

I questioned my sanity a bit more when I finished my repeats and got ready to do the roughly 2 mile cool down that would take me the rest of the way home – ALL UPHILL. Fortunately the rain had let up by then and I was able to stop by the Iwo Jima water fountain for a quick sip before the last push.

When I do the speed workouts on a trail on my Garmin, I don’t see the split times as I go along. Instead, I listen for my watch to signal the start and end of each repeat and don’t get to see how long each took me until I finish. I was really pumped with my times and very glad I didn’t resort to a treadmill because I would not have pushed that hard. I was mostly consistent with just a few slow ones in there, but given the rain and the not completely flat terrain I wasn’t worried about them. It was one heck of a workout!

Do you like running in the rain? What was your favorite workout last week?

Speed Work off the Track

This week I took my speed work off the track. This is something I used to do a lot when I worked by Hains Point, which was mostly flat, straight and long enough to get my various workouts in.

This week’s speed workout however, took place on the Mt. Vernon Trail, which has a lot more ups and downs and twists and turns. I incorporated half mile repeats into my run after a one-mile warm-up. I’m not sure what it is about doing these off the track, but they seemed SO MUCH harder.

I took advantage of the interval setting on my Garmin so that it would beep down the last few steps of each half mile, and then beep the last 5 seconds of my one-minute rest between repeats letting me know it was time to get moving again. It’s a really great feature and keeps me focused on running hard rather than staring at pace or distance on my watch to see if I’ve gone far enough and fast enough.

I ran hard for all eight repeats and looking at my times after I was a bit all over the place. I think that had a lot more to do with the changing terrain though, not necessarily different levels of effort. Despite the seemingly much longer than normal half miles, I felt really great after finishing this workout and proud that I upped my mental game to push through.

Do you like taking your speed workouts off the track? Does it make it easier or harder for you?

Footprints: Monday Recap

Wow, so this is my 200th post! It’s hard to believe I’ve written that many since starting. Hope you’re enjoying reading along with my journey. Let me know what types of posts you enjoy and what you’d like me to write more about!

Now, on to the recap! Last week was another strong week along the way to training for Marine Corps Marathon. I had to make up a couple of the previous week’s workouts at the beginning of last week, so I again pushed some of last week’s into this morning, which worked out well since I had the day off and plenty of time to work out. More on that in next week’s recap though.

Here’s the day by day breakdown…

Monday: Spin Class – Real Ride at Revolve. Core Workout

Tuesday: I split my longer mid-week run from the previous week between an easy 3.5 miler in the AM and a tougher 6.6 miles after work. I also got in a morning track workout, which felt great. My goal was 5X1000 with a 4-minute jog recovery at 4:16 each. I was tight on time so I cut the recovery jogs down to 3-3:30 each and still nailed all my splits: 4:13, 4:16, 4:11, 4:12, 4:12.

Wednesday: Rest day for my team bocce playoffs. They did not go well. Fun season, but lets just say, I will not be missing a workout next week for round 2.

Shopping Spree! So much new Oiselle goodness arrived this week!

Shopping Spree! So much new Oiselle goodness arrived this week!

Thursday: Rest day today because I hit snooze one too many times meaning I had to hit the track early the following Monday before spin to make it up.

Friday: I was out of work early, so I met up with new friend/Oiselle teammate Stephanie on Friday afternoon so we could get our long run out of the way before the weekend really started. We put in a great 18 miles despite the heat and humidity.

Saturday: I tried out a new yoga studio for a 75-minute hot yoga class. I really loved this class and boy was it challenging.

Sunday: I again set out in the midday heat and humidity (I’ll never learn) and slogged along for 10.1 miles along the Custis and W&OD trails. I stopped at a water fountain to fill my bottle at one point with another 4-5 miles to go still and found myself so sweaty I couldn’t grip the bottle well enough to open it. Thankfully a biker on his way by was able to help me out, so I didn’t have to go without water for the second half of my run!! I always appreciate when random people are kind.

Race Recap: Such A Rush

Last Wednesday I ran my first-ever track race at the DC Road Runners Track Championships as part of the Bring Back the Mile Tour. It was so much fun and made me sort of wish I’d run track in high school, although I wouldn’t want to give up all the great softball memories and friends I have either.

Rocking my Oiselle stipe tank and distance shorts with CEP compression socks.

Rocking my Oiselle tank and distance shorts with CEP compression socks.

Ian and I drove up to the track about an hour early so I could get signed up for my heat, watch some of the earlier races to see how things were done and get a full warm-up in. My coach gave me a goal time of 6:30 so I ended up signing up for the under-7 minute heat. After my warm-up I was feeling good and made my way toward the start to wait for them to call our heat. I was pretty surprised at how nervous I was for a one-mile race… I mean I’ve done 26X this multiple times.

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Once the starting call was given the nerves were gone and the adrenaline was pumping. It was such a rush and I loved every second of it. I jumped out quick so I wouldn’t get tied up with others near the start and led almost to the 200 mark before the speedsters in my heat took over. I spent most of the race in 4th place. Clocks were set up at the 200 and 400, but somehow I managed to instantly forget my splits. Ian’s pictures gave me a pretty good idea though, and it looks like I ran my first and last laps the fastest with the 3rd one being the slowest.

During lap four I moved up a little and ran with fellow DC Running Coach teammate Michelle. We dueled our way down the final straightaway to the finish. I felt like I was flying. Obviously my pace was nowhere near the elite heats that would go later, but it was still a pretty quick mile for me! We crossed the finish line at almost the same time. They gave me third in 6:21, but to be honest, it was a pretty close call and probably could have gone either way. The pictures are great – we match each other step for step to the finish.

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I’m really loving the shorter races lately and being on the track with people cheering and seeing you run the whole way was a blast. I’ll absolutely look to do another one of these soon.

Have you ever run a track race? What did you think?