Platte River Training: Week 12

Week 12. I can’t even believe how quick training has gone by. It’s hard to believe that I only have 4 more weeks until my first half of the year. And even after that point, it is a continuous roll of half after half!

This week was a little tougher than I anticipated. My legs felt tight during my first two shorter runs, but I’m pretty sure it was because they were still in shock from the hills of St. Malachi. Needless to say, I was able to stay around a 9 minute pace for both runs, I’m glad my body is adjusting to running faster. My weekend runs were both in Wooster this weekend, so I was able to change up the view and try my legs on even more hills.

Saturday I had my first uneasy encounter during a run. Wooster, as far as I’ve known has been pretty safe. I had no set pace or distance that I wanted to do, just wanted to shake out my legs and make sure they were ok with Sunday’s long run. I started down a country road across from Darren’s apartment. I felt great, managed some small hills and took in the beautiful views. On my way back in, I went through some housing developments, and this is where it turned weird. Every time I turned a corner, I had a car full of high school boys either following me or passing me. My guess was that this happened about 4-5 times, in two different developments. While I’m sure it was just a bunch of boys up to no good on a Saturday morning, it still bothered me, so I booked it home.

Sunday  I was ready for my long run, but more nervous for the hills, lots of hills, so 12 miles would be tough. I decided to split up my run so it wouldn’t be as over whelming. The goal was a 4 mile loop, refuel, 4 mile loop, refuel, 4 mile loop.  Well while this seemed like a great idea, no matter where I turned I had hills, so after mile 8, I split the last 4 in two so I could stretch and refuel. Unfortunately I didn’t quite make it to 12, just short of 11. But after all the hills, I knew my legs got a workout, they were begging for forgiveness a long time before I was finished. Overall it was a 9:43 pace, not bad for my first real hill experience of the year.

Hills anyone?

 2.68 Miles

Tuesday: Rest

Wednesday: 4.25 Miles

Thursday: Rest

Friday: Rest

Saturday: 3.06 Miles

Sunday: 10.75 Miles

Hills and high school boys may have been my biggest obstacles this week, but overall I’m pretty pleased with how the week went. I know I should be doing more miles during the week, but I think what I’m doing is paying off.  I also made a decision on the Cleveland 10 Miler….and this year I’m going to pass. I’m pretty confident my legs will be exhausted after Colorado and Earth Day Half and I’ll end up not enjoying the race. But it is definitely on the calendar for 2013!

Four more weeks to go!

St. Malachi 5 Miler

I keep referring to 2012 as the year of the races, and this weekend proved just that. I had no idea what to expect from St. Malachi. All I heard was that it was tough and hilly, and the weather can be unpredictable. To top it off, nothing about this race was part of my normal race ritual. This meant no IcyHot, I had a pre-run Gu snack, and two different breakfast bars. The weather was perfect, and the race shirt actually fit me. So much for never trying anything new on race day…

I was even more excited that I got to see some pretty awesome running ladies. Kimi, Christie and I carpooled together and met up with Heather and an old Muskie friend, Melissa. This definitely made the race seem more fun, and my little bit of nerves instantly disappeared. Melissa volunteered to run the race with me and catch up since she now lives in Virginia. My first thought was that I’m not used to running with others, this could become an interesting race.

The first mile was so busy and I knew my pace could be off. But even while talking, we ran the first mile in a under 9:30. Decent pace, but hopefully talking doesn’t get to me and slow me down for the rest of the race. Second mile clocked in at 8:21. What is this pace? At this point I was concerned my body thought I was running a shorter distance, I knew I couldn’t keep this pace up for another three miles. Next up was mile three, 8:40. This mile included the half way mark and the water stop. We got slowed down with a falling runner and everyone stopping to get water, but this pace was still quicker than what I was used to. I don’t remember mile 4 time, but I do remember this is when the hills started really showing up. And they kept coming, was there an end in sight? We finally got to the bridge and I knew the end was just around the corner, it actually caught me off guard.  I crossed the line at 42:25. Umm, hello PR! I cut 5 minutes off my 5 mile time. I had no idea I had this kind of speed in me, I really don’t even know where it came from. I felt amazing afterward and I was even able to dominate the hills, thanks to Dover hill for all the practice this year.

Muskie race buddies!

So there we have it, first race of the year complete and it was a PR. 2012 year of the races? I think so. Next race is the Sole to Soul 5k on March 31st. I think by having a few races under my belt before Colorado, I’ll feel better about that race and the rest of the year. Everyone had a great St. Malachi race, so that means that everyone will have a great 2012 right? 🙂