HOF Half Marathon Training: Week Five

What a week. I was stressed from almost every single angle, and running was the only way to keep me semi sane. I think I have reached my breaking point with winter. These brutal temps and deep snow have me longing for warmer weather, and right about now, I’m considering anything above 25 degrees tropical!

Monday- 0

Tuesday- 7.5 Miles, 2 Mile W/U, 5×800 w/400 repeats, 2 Mile C/D

Wednesday- 2 Miles

Thursday- 0

Friday- 0

Saturday- 10 Miles

Sunday- 7 Miles

Total Miles-26.5 Miles

Tuesday was a much needed speed workout. We started with two miles on the track and 5×800 repeats on the treadmill. It was pretty busy and abnormally hot at the rec, so these weren’t pleasant, but it was nice to run somewhere other than my basement.

Wednesday was a rough day. It was uncomfortably warm in the basement and my iPad’s battery died after 2 miles. I definitely wasn’t feeling the run, so I just called it. I also noticed a bit of a pull in my arch, hoping it was just the angle I was running, and that it doesn’t lead to anything serious.

The normal view these days

The normal view these days

Saturday I was determined to hit my long run, one way or another. I had thought of joining the group run, but when I noticed how quickly the snow was coming down, I decided to attempt the treadmill. I broke it up into episodes of Friends, and upped my pace at every new episode. I’m not sure how, but I made it. 10 miles on the treadmill is rough!

Sunday I met up with Mallory and Mo to run outside for the first time in two weeks! It was chilly, but absolutely wonderful, and just what I needed to get rid of some cabin fever. We ended up with 7 miles around town, about 9 minute average pace. While it felt amazing to get outside, my legs were a little tight later on in the day from all the hills and inclines.

It hit me that we’re already getting into week 6, and I feel that I’m at a much better point this year, than I ever have been for a spring half. Looking forward, all of my long runs will be between 10-14 miles with the exception of two cut back weeks. And even though I had a tough start, I feel more confident than I ever have at the end of February. What’s most surprising is I’ll be ending the shortest month of the year with almost 100 miles…which has never happened. I’m still debating if I want to push for 29 miles in six days, but I’m already close so I might as well!

 

HOF Half Marathon Training: Week Two & Three

After a week of traveling, and another week of playing catch up, I was finally able to get caught up on my training recaps. Because weeks two and three were less than normal, I’ll be combining them together.

Week 2

Monday- 0

Tuesday- 3 Miles Biked + Core

Wednesday-0

Thursday- 0
Friday- 0

Saturday- 0

Sunday- 6 Miles

Total Miles-6 Miles Run, 3 Miles Biked

Talk about a horrible week! I was traveling in Toronto from Tuesday through Thursday, so I was stuck with a tight schedule, and limited gym equipment. The only time I got to the hotel gym, I was forced to the bike because all of the treadmills were taken. The rest of the trip was spent schmoozing with customers, fancy dinners and tracking down my luggage that was left in Canada. The only positive of the trip was the beautiful views outside my hotel room.

Beautiful downtown Toronto

Beautiful downtown Toronto

Saturday was intended to be my long run, but instead we were on the road from 9:30am to 6pm picking up our new treadmill! Our new (to us) treadmill was a Christmas gift we bought from my aunt. It’s in perfect condition, and I spent Sunday morning trying it out. I’m looking forward to many miles in the basement after spending so much time at the rec center doing laps!

Week 3

Monday- 0

Tuesday- 6 Miles + Core

Wednesday-0

Thursday- 0
Friday- 0

Saturday- 9 Miles

Sunday- 6.5 Miles

Total Miles-21.5 Miles

It felt so good to be back to a somewhat normal schedule this week. I started Tuesday with speedwork. Bob taught us about his half and half progression workout for the treadmill. For every half mile run, bump up the speed by half. So we started at 5 and got up to 7.5 for a total of 3 miles. Pair it with a two mile warm up and one mile cool down, it was a great workout. I don’t do many progression runs (on purpose) so it was a nice way to break up the normal 800 repeats.

Mid week was spent catching up on things after work and surviving the snowstorm, but the weekend was all about the miles.

Saturday was my long run and I spent all 9 miles on the treadmill. This was the longest amount of time or miles that I’ve spent on a treadmill, but I managed. I decided the best way to help pass the time was to start watching Friends from the very beginning. I was able to get 4 episodes in and it really didn’t feel like I spent an hour and a half on the treadmill. Mission accomplished!

Perfect post treadmill ice bath!

Perfect post treadmill ice bath!

I expected to feel rough when I woke up Sunday morning, knowing that the previous day’s mileage was the furthest I’ve gone since the marathon. Surprisingly I felt great, and met Mallory for a recovery run. We ventured down Roscoe, but were greeted with ice and slush so we went to the surrounding neighborhoods. I felt great despite the fact our entire route was rolling hills. Quickly a four mile recovery run ended up at six and a half and I think I could have gone even further.

A beautiful mess

A beautiful mess

So a few weeks of up and downs, but it’s still early on, so I’m not too worried. Winter is always a challenge with training, once March rolls around, things should be pretty much back to normal.

Weekly Fitness Recap

Here we are at week two of 2015 and just one week away from my first training cycle of 2015. This was also the first full week of my 365 day streak, and so far so good. But this week wasn’t easy. We had our first polar vortex of the year with temperatures dropping to -23 with windchill. Yikes! But, I made it through, spent a bunch of time at the rec center, and managed to get my highest weekly mileage since the marathon.

Monday- 1 Hour PiYo+ 1 Mile
Tuesday- 5 Miles + Core & Lifting
Wednesday- 3 Miles
Thursday- 3 Miles + Core
Friday- 1 Mile
Saturday- 3 Miles + Core & Lifting
Sunday- 1 Mile
Total Miles- 17 Miles

Monday started with a new class at the rec, a PiYo class. I had barely heard of PiYo, nor taken a class, but after reading the description, I figured it was worth a shot. It was faster than I expected, and my whole body got a work out (my whole body was sore until Thursday). I’m not 100% sure what I think of it, but I like the teacher, so I’ll give it another try. After class I ran my one mile, where my legs felt like jello and called it a day.

Tuesday we got back to our “track tuesday” where we actually did speedwork on the treadmill. Both Mallory and Mo have started their training cycle, so I followed along what they had on schedule, but modified my pace. We ran four 800 repeats with 400m recovery, and I felt exhausted. For some reason, 800’s on the treadmill are so much harder than on the track. I also felt pretty sore from class the night before. We finished up with some core and lifting.

Wednesday and Thursday were relatively uneventful. I ran on the indoor track by myself, both days an easy three miler and listened to Serial. Yep, I got hooked. I finished up Thursday with core and about a million questions for Adnon.

Friday, which is typically a rest day, was just one mile. I also did some core and some lifting, just to even things out.

Saturday I was tempted to run outside because it was absolutely beautiful out, but considering it was in the negative temps all morning, I went to the rec. I managed to run three miles with negative splits. I’m reaching my limit of days that I can run at the rec center per week, but hopefully it’s just because of the added amount of people. I tried to do core and lift, but it was too crowded, so I finished that up at home. And Sunday was supposed to be a longer run, but after Chipotle and after the Packer’s game was over, all I could get out was my one mile.

Overall, I felt pretty good for my first full week of running every single day. For running 11 days in a row, I think I’ve tried to balance things out pretty good. I’ve been able to build a small base these last few weeks which will help to transition into my training cycle.

How do you deal with super cold temps? Do you prefer the treadmill or indoor track?

Medina Half Training: Week One

First week of training is in the books and I’m happy to say it was my final week of traveling! I couldn’t be more excited to get back to a regular schedule because this week threw me for a loop! The hardest part about running and traveling is time management. Even though we had a quick 25 hour trip in St. Louis, time was tight and there was no room for exercise. I knew this week I wouldn’t be able to follow my plan as well as I hoped, but I wanted to try. Instead I took each day as it’s own and focused on that workout alone.

Body Fusion was great this week, there were only two of us in class, but I felt that we were able to do more than we usually could. I also went up in my weights, it’s nice to see that the class is paying off and I can finally lift more without feeling too exhausted. I can’t wait to see how well this class helps me out this year.

Tuesday and Wednesday I was in St. Louis with no time to exercise. By the time I got home from the airport on Wednesday night I knew I wouldn’t make it to the gym, so I ran in the basement, getting a measly two miles in. Not much, but it was better than waiting until another day to run.

Luckily Thursday I was able to get to the gym. I decided that instead of trying to make up for lost miles on the week, I would just stick to whatever the schedule had planned. I had 4 on the schedule and wanted to keep them at a similar pace if I could, as a way to prepare for Sunday’s 5k. I kept the pace just under 9:00 and made sure to check my 1.5 mile time and 2.5 mile time for reference. It seemed easy enough then, so hopefully I could do the same on Sunday.

Monday: Body Fusion Class – 30 minutes of lifting/abs/squats & 30 minutes of yoga

Tuesday: Off

Wednesday: 2 Miles

Thursday: 4 Miles

Friday: Off

Saturday: 3 Miles

Sunday: Frosty 5k + 4 Miles

Total Miles: 16 Miles

Saturday was supposed to be my long run of 7 miles, but I woke up with tight calves that just wouldn’t relax. I ran three and even then I struggled to keep my legs going. With all the snow and cold we’ve been getting it’s been hard for neighbors to keep up with shoveling their sidewalks, so only half of them seem to be clear. I attempted to run sidewalks when I could, but ended up on the street after almost twisting my ankle on some ice. After 3 miles and almost a dozen falls, I decided to head in and run my long run Sunday. With the 5k, I’d only have to do an extra 4 miles, which seemed like an easy plan.

Sunday I woke up early, tried to get rid of my nerves and headed to the rec center. They were hosting the Frosty 5k, which I’ll recap on Wednesday. After my three miles were completed, I opted to head home instead of run on the track. I like to take advantage of running outdoors when I can, even when it’s cold and snowy. The snow started to pick up, so I headed through developments where traffic wouldn’t be as busy. My pace was pretty much on spot at 9:30 except for about a half mile where I ended up in the 8:30 range somehow. I was able to explore parts of a new development, but was stuck on the street due to the foot of snow that was on the sidewalks. Most cars were being stand up citizens and driving on the other side of the road to avoid me. All except for a lovely lady in a white mini van, who decided to yell and swerve towards me to show her anger of runners on the road. I pulled into a driveway to collect myself, feeling glad I was ok, but pretty angry. While I understand that winter isn’t the best time for runners and drivers to share the road, there’s no reason to display anger like that. When sidewalks aren’t clear or aren’t available, sometimes the road is the only place to run. I saw a few other runners running the road, in the same development, so I’m sure she was having a wonderful day scaring runners.

After this I headed back towards home, my legs starting to loose traction on the road from the snow. They were also pretty tight from the slight uphill and the random spots of ice that I found. I finished up with 7 for the day, just as my plan showed. Even though I didn’t get all the miles I was supposed to run this week, I still had some good runs. I’m so excited to have a normal week again, so I can ramp up the mileage and work on my speed!

How are battling the elements this winter? Do you prefer sidewalks or road to run on?

 

Weekly Fact about Type 1 Diabetes:

What is Type 1 Diabetes? Sure you’ve heard of it, but do you really know what it means? Type 1 Diabetes happens when the pancreas doesn’t produce insulin. Insulin helps to convert sugar, starches and other foods into energy that is needed every day. Without natural insulin, you have to find another way to get insulin into your body, such as using daily injections or an insulin pump. Type 1 Diabetes is diagnosed in children and young adults and is a lifelong challenge.

Want to help cure Type 1 Diabetes? You can donate here!

Base Week 4

This week my body turned against me. Traveling finally caught up with me and I was sick as a dog Sunday evening through Tuesday afternoon. Knowing that I’d be traveling all week, I headed into the office Monday and tried to get a few things done. By the afternoon I felt miserable, stopped at the Minute Clinic and spent the rest of the day on the couch. I missed my Body Fusion class, but I knew I had to stay home if I wanted any chance of getting better.

I lucked out with the cold weather, my first flight was canceled on Tuesday, and I was rescheduled for the 5:50 flight to Toronto. A small delay in travel plans, but I was able to sleep for 11 straight hours and felt so much better when I woke up. It was still negative degrees when I got up and I knew I wouldn’t be heading to the gym, or outside to run. So I invented my own workout and ran the basement for 20 minutes straight, about 2 miles. It wasn’t your typical workout, but when you’re sick and need to get something in, you do what you can.

I finally made it to Toronto and spent a lot of time on my feet, working the show and walking the city. I only took advantage of the hotel workout room once, and I’m pretty sure that’s all I could handle on the treadmill. It was a small workout room and got hot quickly, but I got three miles in before I headed out for dinner. I wish I had gotten a chance to run the city again, but it was just far too cold and dark.

The 80's called...they want their treadmill back.

The 80’s called…they want their treadmill back.

Monday: Sick

Tuesday: 2 Miles

Wednesday: Off

Thursday: 3 Miles

Friday: Off

Saturday: 3 Miles

Sunday: 6 Miles

Total Miles: 14 Miles

Saturday I had originally planned on running the Blizzard Busters 5k in Ashland, but after being sick all week and not running that much, I opted out of the 90 minute round trip drive and ran my own 5k around town. I headed out on the country roads and took advantage of the warm weather. I even had a few rain drops fall on me, something I’m typically not excited about in winter. I felt good and even though I passed on the race, I was glad I got a few miles in to test the waters.

Rainy, Saturday bliss

Rainy, Saturday bliss

Sunday was one of those days where your feet decide the run. It had snowed and rained overnight so the roads and sidewalks were covered with snow on top of ice on top of slush on top of snow. Footing was touch and go at times, and my Yak Trax kept getting weighed down with slush, but I was able to get into a decent pace once in a while. I had originally hoped for 3-4, thinking that I had fully recovered from being sick. After about a mile and a half in, I decided to run down town and see how many miles I could get in. I ran to the square and then headed back, dodging puddles and slush almost the entire way. I got back towards home and ended up at 5 miles, still feeling pretty good, I decided for one more before I headed back in for some lunch. Sunday’s run was the longest I’ve run by myself since last fall and I felt great. I probably could have run a few more miles, but I was starving, and well, food always wins.

One of my favorite views

One of my favorite views

This week definitely wasn’t what I had in mind, but when your body needs a break you listen. I’m hoping that I won’t get sick again for a while so I can focus on my mileage again. This week is another week of traveling, so I’ll be trying to run between shows and customer dinners. Also, if someone could send some warm weather down to Texas this week, I’d appreciate it!

Do you exercise when your sick, or sit it out? Rain or snow, which do you prefer?

 

 

Back to Basics

Well, it’s a new month, so it’s back to running and working out. While I enjoyed coming home to relax on the couch and catch up on the DVR, I’m ready to get back out there and pound the pavement. I have to admit, I’m a little nervous to come back. After taking such a long time off, I know I’m way out of shape and worry what the first couple weeks will be like. Luckily, I can usually bounce back quickly, but it isn’t pretty.

If I haven’t hinted at it enough, my spring goal race is the Medina Half Marathon. Being part of MCRR, this is our baby and I’m excited for what’s in store for the inaugural race. I knew I wasn’t quite ready to get back into marathon training, and without a doubt, having a half marathon in my backyard was by far the perfect thing. But with race day not until May 31st, I have quite a bit of time to really get back into shape and prepare myself to go sub 2:00.

Yes, Medina will be my mission of breaking that beautiful time. And for the next 3 1/2 months (official training starts February 10th), I plan on prepping myself for the best training cycle to date. It’s time to get down to business and go for something I’ve been waiting for since I started my half marathon journey.

So what will this in between training session look like? It’s going to look pretty similar to a regular training cycle, but more relaxed. There is no set distance and if I have to miss a run, it’s ok. Tentatively  this is what a normal week will look like.

Monday: Run (Indoor Track) & Lift

Tuesday: Run (Indoor Track) & Bike (Stationary Bike)

Wednesday: Run (Indoor Track) & Lift

Thursday: Yoga

Friday: Off

Saturday: Run (Outside!)

Sunday: Off/At home yoga or lifting

As you can tell, I’ll be inside for most of my workouts, but I want to make sure I mix it up a bit. Running on the indoor track can get tiring, so varying the speed and distance will help. I’ll also be getting back into yoga once a week. Most importantly, I want to get back into lifting and cycling. I enjoyed these last winter, and want to make sure I keep up with them. Due to lack of daylight, I’ll only be able to get outside once a week, which will most likely be a longer run if possible.

I’m looking forward to these next couple months as I get back into running and will keep you updated on how things go. I’m also open to suggestions on things to try or workout challenges you’ve seen that have worked for you. Hopefully I’ll be ready to take on the next training cycle with everything I have and finally go sub 2:00.

 

What’s your plan for winter training? How do you your handle off season time?