Last week’s workouts continued the steady build of the past several months. Forty-mile weeks feel comfortable now, so I am ramping up long runs and intensity. Whether or not fall races happen (so far, Indy is still scheduled to proceed), I’m enjoying this base-building process – even right now, when the process involves 5 AM alarms to beat the summer heat.
Meanwhile, when I’m not running or coaching, I’m chasing around a very mobile baby. Isla learned how to crawl up the stairs and is starting to cruise. She is very active!
Monday: Rest day
My parents visited for Father’s Day, so I savored the extra time with them.
Tuesday: 7 mile run with strides
I mapped out the perfect 7-mile loop, with few traffic crossings. I am really into large single-loop routes, where I do not repeat sections. The mental variety is stimulating and I appreciate being able to set out on a route and just hit cruise control without thinking about how many loops or when to turn around.
It was very humid (because every morning is very humid in Northwest Indiana), so I kept my effort very controlled for the first half. For the sake of time, I incorporated my strides into the final mile of my run.
Wednesday: 5.6 mile stroller run
The weather was more pleasant, which made for a lovely stroller run.
Thursday: Mona fartlek (7.2 miles total) & strength training
The Mona (short for its namesake Moneghetti) is a deceptively challenging fartkek. It only has 10 minutes of faster running, but the short float intervals do not permit full recovery – especially when done in Midwestern summer humidity. You have to control your pacing at the start, because the final intervals get hard. You train both leg speed and VO2 in this workout (essentially working velocity at VO2, which is arguably more valuable than VO2 alone).
After a 20 minute warm-up (with a few strides to loosen up the legs), I started the workout. The Mona is 2 x 90 seconds hard/90 second easy, 4 x 60 seconds hard/60 seconds easy, 4 x 30 seconds hard/30 seconds easy, and 4 x 15 seconds hard/15 seconds easy. I managed paces at 6:30-6:55/mile. I cooled down with 20 minutes easy, for an hour total of running.
After the run, I did a short TRX circuit from Running Rewired. The single leg squats are challenging, especially when stacked with back lunges.
Friday: 5 mile easy run
With a chance of rain and an early morning phone meeting, I opted for an easy treadmill run. I just cruised along at a light, breathe-through-the-nose effort with some rolling hills. My Garmin read a 9:3x pace (vs 9:15-ish on the treadmill), since hills on the treadmill affect the precision of the reading.
Saturday: 3 mile run + strides
I pushed back my long run in favor of more sleep. Bad thunderstorms hit Friday night and knocked out our power for the entire night. I slept poorly since I was worried about Isla’s room getting too hot without the A/C and about not having the monitor working.
By the time we headed out for a short family stroller run shortly after 9 AM, it was hot and muggy. We kept a light pace to avoid overheating, but even then, I could feel the sun beating down on me.
After the run, I completed six strides, all around a 6:00/mile pace. These felt much better than the run!
Sunday: 13.1 mile long run
I headed out shortly after 6 AM to avoid the heat, but there was no escaping the humidity. The weather app reported 100% at the start!
I focused on keeping my breathing comfortable, especially as the run progressed and the temperature spiked. I finished at an 8:40 avg with a negative split, which I was proud of in these conditions.
I encountered a particularly aggressive red-winged blackbird. One segment of my long run route passes by their nests and I frequently get dive-bombed, but previously they never hit me. This one bird actually struck my head! I’m pretty sure I spent the next half mile just trying to lower my heart rate from the surprise of that.
How was your week in running?