Last week’s training was a darn good week of running. I increased my mileage, ran two strong workouts, and ran with Ryan to a half marathon PR. This was one of those training weeks that was satisfying, confidence-building, and just simply enjoyable.
Perhaps it is no coincidence that this week of training included some of my favorite workouts and my favorite half marathon. I am a big believer in playing to your strengths and preferences, even when you are pushing yourself!
Monday: 6 mile easy run
I started off this run with Charlie. We initially started out on a flatter route, until we hit the boardwalk and started to slip and slide. It didn’t look icy, but it certainly was far more slippery than I was comfortable running on! Instead, I opted for a hilly route with Charlie for four miles, quickly dropped him off at home, and then finished off the run with a mile uphill and a mile downhill. According to Strava, I climbed about 468 feet in these six miles.
Tuesday: 3 x 1 mile (7 miles total) & strength training
I woke up excited to run this workout. Mile repeats are a challenging workout yet I was eager to work hard. I had not run mile repeats at 5K pace in about a year and a half and I had forgotten how I actually enjoy this workout. The miles are hard, but once I settle into that hard pace, I can hold it. I ran 6:42, 6:46, and 6:42 for my three miles, and finished feeling as if I had something left in my tank – exactly how you want to feel after a run like this. Since I’ve never raced a mile, my Garmin recorded a mile PR during this run!
Wednesday: 4 mile easy run
I felt the fatigue from the previous day’s workouts, so Ollie and I ran at a very easy effort. Or, more accurately, I ran at a very easy effort and Ollie repeatedly attempted to pick up the pace. My pace was much slower than even a normal easy run – 9:36/mile average pace. It’s important to run those easy days at a truly easy effort! That easy effort lets your body recover and makes for a much more enjoyable run than if you try to unnecessarily push the pace.
I finished off the workout with a short 7-minute Pilates video and some foam rolling.
Thursday: 2 x 2 miles (8 miles total)
It rained all day Thursday, including during my two mile repeats workout. I originally was going to drive to my favorite paved trail, but the thought of driving a few minutes home in soaking wet running clothes sounded unappealing. Instead, I ran on undulating terrain. It wasn’t hilly per se, but it was constantly changing: slight uphill for a few feet, slight downhill for a few feet, repeat – enough to be different than my normal flat route.
I was really pleased with this workout: my splits were 7:12, 7:19, 7:16, and 7:17 – consistent and within the range I was hoping for.
I was tired after this workout. There’s something about running hard in the cold rain that makes a workout more tiring! I was going to strength train anyway, but when Ryan decided to do his last run before his race on Friday morning, I decided to rest also. I felt a bit guilty since I had been so diligent about my strength training in the past couple months, but I also knew I needed to rest.
Friday: Rest day
After the past four days of running, a rest day felt great.
Saturday: 14 miles (Lake Sammamish Half Marathon)
The months leading up to this race are often dreary, meaning lots of long runs in the rain, but the weather has been perfect for this race each of the three years I have run it. The start was chilly, but the sun was shining the entire race. I ran my past two half marathon PRs on this course and Ryan was hoping to the do the same – and he did! We ran together the entire race and finished in 1:56:12. I ran one mile before to get to 14 miles for the day.
Instead of a tech shirt, finishers received a super soft hoodie. I’m obsessed with it and probably have gotten more use it out of it already than some race shirts!
Ryan and I took an hour-long walk after morning Mass because it was too beautiful not to be outside. The sun was shining and the temperature reached the high 50s! After our walk, I did a 25 minute advanced Pilates mat workout.
How have you trained to your strengths recently?
How was your week in running?