Medina Half Training: Week Fifteen

We’re officially in taper mode, but really this week was more about recovering than anything. After the Cleveland Half, I wasn’t sure how my legs were going to feel. Monday I was feeling a little sore, so I took the day off from everything and made sure to relax, feet up, once I got home from work.

Tuesday I didn’t have any real plan, just wanted to get a few miles in and see if my legs were recovered. I headed over to Roscoe and ran the two mile out in back. I felt stiff at first, but my legs started to loosen up. The path has a great combination of flat and hills so I was able to mix it up and get a little bit of hill training in.

After I finished up my run, I walked another 3/4 mile of the path and hung out with some deer while the sun set. It was the perfect way to kick off the week.

Beautiful Tuesday night

Beautiful Tuesday night

Wednesday I ended up running Mastick with Elayna. It’d been a while since we had a chance to run together so it was great to catch up. We took her puppy Ella with us and hit the trails with no plan, but to have fun. We ended up with a little over 4 miles and some great views along the way. I definitely miss running Mastick, and hope to get up there a few times a month this summer if I can.

Wednesday night trails

Wednesday night trails

Thursday and Friday I took off and caught up with some friends and housework. The only time I ran over the weekend was Sunday morning. It was pretty hot so I wasn’t feeling too quick, but wanted to get some miles. The rest of the weekend was spent working on our yard and spending as much time outside as I could.

Monday: Off

Tuesday: 2 Miles

Wednesday: 4 Miles

Thursday: Off

Friday: Off

Saturday: Off

Sunday: 2.6 Miles

Total Miles: 8.6 Miles

This week is race week, and after 16 weeks, the training cycle will finally come to an end. It’s hard to believe how quickly it’s gone by but it’s been such a great experience.

I’ve also decided I’m going to attempt the Runner’s World Run Streak. I usually don’t participate because I’m either injured or in the middle of time off. I’m not sure if I’ll last the entire time, but I think it would be fun to try. Plus, with the timing, it’s a perfect way to kick off marathon training, which starts next Monday!

So here we go, the final week of training for the Medina Half Marathon…..

 

Have you ever run the Runner’s World Run Streak? How do you celebrate the last week of a training cycle?

Medina Half Training: Week Fourteen

This week was relatively easy and laid back because of the Cleveland Half Marathon on Sunday. I didn’t know if I’d run it this year, but after winning an entry to the distance of my choice, I figured it’d be the perfect tune up for Medina. Plus with the new course, how could I say no!

Monday night I was at the dealership instead of Body Fusion, but luckily made it home before spending a few hours in the basement for tornado warnings. I should have done some yoga, but I couldn’t relax with the storm. Thankfully we didn’t have any damage, but other parts of town and our neighborhood were badly flooded.

Tuesday I debated running at the rec because it was just so hot and humid. But once I saw my neighbor kids handing out cold drinks, I decided to do a short run outside and reward myself after I finished up. I headed to the trails for maximum shade and ran a short out and back. I was a hot sweaty mess, but still managed to keep my pace under 9:00 somehow. Unfortunately when I got back, the neighborhood kids had run out of drinks, but about 5 minutes after my run, they came over and made sure I was hydrated.

Too kind.

Too kind.

Wednesday I headed up to the square and worked on a few things for the Medina Half. Since I was already up there, I decided to get a few miles in and run some of the streets I ran last year. It was a little chilly, but humid, but it felt great to get back on the streets I really enjoyed running. I ran an out and back and had some hills thrown in for good measure.

I took the rest of the week off to make sure my body could rest up for Sunday’s race. I did a short, slow shake out run Saturday and hoped I’d be ready for Cleveland!

Monday: Off

Tuesday: 2 Miles

Wednesday: 3.5 Miles

Thursday: Off

Friday: Off

Saturday: 1.5 Miles

Sunday: Cleveland Half Marathon

Total Miles: 20 Miles

Sunday was a long day, and the recap will come this week, but I wanted to touch on it shortly as I’m suddenly at a cross roads. My goal for Medina was to run sub 2. After last week’s course run, I wasn’t sure I could do it, but I did it, just not at Medina.

So here I am, two weeks before race day, already met my goal, and preparing myself for the next half. Lucky for me it’s official taper time, and I can reevaluate what I want to do for Medina. It’s a tougher course, so breaking 2 will still be difficult, but not out of the question.

I’m also 20 weeks out from Wineglass Marathon, which means I need to start working on a training plan, and decide if I want to do 16 weeks or 18 weeks. Experienced marathoners, this is where I need your help….

All in all, week 14 was a good one, and honestly unexpected. I’m going to take the next two weeks easy, work on hills and come up with a new plan for Medina.

Have you ever reached your goal time earlier than your goal race? How many weeks do you use in your marathon training cycle?

 

 

 

There’s still two weeks left to get your donations in for Team JDRF. If you’re interested in donating, you can do so here.

Columbus Marathon Training Review

This is it, the final week of marathon training! My heart beats a million times a minute just thinking about it. It has all come down to these last days, and I hope to savor every moment. You only get one first marathon experience. This past week of training was almost nothing. I got bit by the sick bug for most of the week, and had a hard time shaking it. I finally got over it by the weekend, until it showed up again Sunday morning, right before my run. Lucky for me, my whole body was against me because I also woke up during the night with a cramp in my calf. Needless to say, this week was a bust for mileage. Taper fail? Possibly, but the miles I got in were fantastic. I had two strong runs and I felt better than I had for a long time.

Monday: Sick Day

Tuesday: Rest Day

Wednesday: 1.5 Miles

Thursday: 2.5 Miles

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday: Rest Day

Sunday: Sick Day/Calf Cramp

Total Miles: 4 Miles

So now I’m left with one final week of runs before the big day. I had my ups and downs throughout training, but this coming Sunday it will be all worth it. I’m proud of how far I’ve come and how much I accomplished. Even though I had knee issues, I didn’t let it get in the way of my goal. I’ll admit, I thought about backing out after I lost the second month of training. And preparing for a marathon in 8 weeks wasn’t really ideal. But things happen and you over come them. Not every race or training cycle is going to be perfect. It’s the little things that go wrong that will make you a stronger runner.

My thoughts exactly

I certainly had runs that I absolutely hated, and others that I didn’t want to end. I started my training on familiar, flat routes along the lake and ended my training along hilly, unfamiliar territory. These were the runs that made me question why was out there, but these were also the runs that made me confident I made the right decision in running a marathon. Even though I never hit that 20 mile training run, I’m confident that I’ll be able to do it in just 6 days.

What I’ve learned:

  • Training for a marathon is possible. I couldn’t imagine running further than 13.1 miles when I started. To know that I’ve done it, and done it more than once makes me think that any length of run is possible. Little by little distance running isn’t so far.
  • I love long runs. I’ve always loved long distance running, but I truly enjoyed my weekends runs more than my weekday ones. There was just something there that made me excited to go out and run a half marathon plus every weekend.
  • Hills aren’t that bad. I was pretty nervous and upset when I did my first couple of runs after moving. I couldn’t find a single stretch of flat land. I’m still not brave enough to tackle the big ones out in the country, but I’d like to think that the small and medium ones aren’t bad.
  • I’m a cold weather runner. The weather was miserable this summer. I’m pretty sure I’ve never sweated that much in my life. To say I was excited for the 50 degree weather was an understatement. But what I’m actually excited for is snow. It’d be interesting training for a marathon during winter…
  • I am a runner through and through. This week, this moment is what I’ve spent the last four months, if not longer, preparing for. I’ve brought my running full circle from the 400m in track back in middle school to now with 26.2 miles. I’ve put in the hard work, I had disappointments and moments of pure joy.  Running the training runs alone, I learned so much about myself, it’s hard to put into words. I know I’ll learn so much more on Sunday.

Columbus Marathon Training: Week 14

It’s officially taper time! This also means that there are only two weeks until the marathon, two weeks! I can’t believe how quickly the time has gone by. Just over a year ago, I made the decision that I would take the next step and run a marathon, and to think that it’s almost here is still unbelievable. I wish I could say that my hardest runs are past me, and that I’ve done everything I could have to make sure that the marathon is a success. But I can’t.

It’s no secret that my training has been challenging, and not up to standards. I’ve gone through pain, and recovery, and pain again. I lost a complete month of training, something I know will show up on race day around mile 20 when I have feelings of doubt. But my main focus in these next two weeks is to keep my pain to a minimum. After last weekend’s long, hilly run, my body has felt a little beat up.  I felt it this week on both my shorter and longer run as well.

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: Rest Day

Wednesday: 3 Miles

Thursday: Rest Day

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday: Rest Day

Sunday: 7 Miles

Total Miles: 10 Miles

For the next two weeks, I’m going to listen to my body and ignore my training schedule. I still want to get three runs in a week, but I’ll keep them short, easy and most likely on a treadmill. As much as I’d prefer to be outside, my daylight after work is limited. I also think it’s best for me to be on the flat surface of the treadmill, and if any pain happens, I can easily stop.

Other things I need to do in the next two weeks? I still need to figure out what to wear for race day. The weather has thrown me for a loop with the freezing temperatures, but it looks like it should warm up. Luckily I’m great at over packing, so I should have plenty of options. But most important, I need to figure out which colors to wear. I also need to update my playlist on my iPod. Over the past few weeks I’ve found some great songs, and some not so great songs. I need to shape it up so I’m not playing with music, but focusing on my running come race day.

What do you do during taper? Any suggestions?

Platte River Training: Week 14

It all comes down to this. Week 14, which means now I’m counting down days to the race, not weeks. 14 days. I’ve come so far in the past weeks and months, but there is so much that can happen in the next 14 days. This is where I need to be careful about what I put in my body and how I treat it. Every single pain or twinge I need to think twice about. All liquids will now be water, so wine glasses, I’ll see you after a few weeks. And all pasta is welcome back in my body. I may be going to the extreme, but I’ve put so much time and effort into this race since December 26th. Outside of Maine and the marathon, this is one of the most important races of the year. Not to mention I’ll be running in altitudes I’m not used to at all.

So let’s take a look at the past week.

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: 3.22 Miles

Wednesday: 3.41 Miles

Thursday: Rest Day

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday: 6.19 Miles

Sunday: Rest Day

I let my legs decide on the mileage this week. I didn’t want to push myself too hard, or get down on myself if I didn’t make it to a certain mile. The first mile of my runs is probably the hardest now. My knee just doesn’t want to give in, and makes for a very uncomfortable couple of minutes. I’ll be picking up a brace for the next couple of weeks, hoping that will help by race day.

Speaking of race day, I didn’t run the Sole to Soul 5k. We had a change of plans and I ended up in Wooster for the weekend. I’ve quickly learned I need to have an alternate race schedule for when I’m not up in Cleveland. However, I did find a race for this coming Saturday down in Marion, so I’ll be able to get in one more race before the half!