Boston Marathon Training: Week 10

I got some sad family news early this week that means I’ll be taking a road trip to Utah next week for a funeral. It was a rough week in general. Just stressful and sad with personal and national events. I don’t know if this is the most healthy way of dealing with things when life gets chaotic, but I took to my planner to reschedule my runs. Barring illness or injury, running is something I can control. It helps me sleep better at night and keeps my mind a little calmer.

Fortunately this was a cutback week, so I wasn’t concerned that the schedule adjustments I had to do would be too much. Next week might be trickier though.

Unfortunately I’ve had to do so many adjustments lately that I haven’t been to yoga since before I got ecoli I couple weeks ago. I’m starting to feel the strain in my hamstrings again.

Monday – Rest Day

My sister texted me Monday night to ask about the 20-miler I have scheduled for next weekend. She’s coming to Utah too and also has a 20-miler on the calendar that day even though she’s about a month ahead of my with marathon training (hers is on St. Patty’s Day). I almost always run alone. It felt really good that she was keeping up with my schedule and wanted to figure out how to do this together.

Tuesday – 8 miles General Aerobic (9:07 avg pace), treadmill

Now that I’m running in the morning more, I’ve noticed a pattern that Tuesdays don’t feel great. I think there’s some leftover fatigue from whatever Sunday’s hard effort is.

Wednesday – VO2 Max 8 Miles: 5×800 @5k pace with 50% jog between, treadmill

I haven’t run 5k pace in a while and wasn’t sure what to expect after feeling slow the day before. I started out my fast paces at 7:13 pace and by the last one was at a 6:57 pace. It felt great.

Thursday – Recovery 5 miles (9:02 avg pace), treadmill

I did this one on my lunch break. Nothing special to report.

Friday – 8 miles with 8×100 sprints, treadmill

Normally this would be a rest day, but I’m trying to adjust my schedule so I can do long runs on Saturdays instead of Sundays the next couple of weeks and so I can use my rest days for travel days next Thursday and Friday.

Saturday – 14 miles, outside

I had crummy luck with the weather. It was sunny before and after my run, but rained most of the actual run and even hailed a little. I opted for the hilly lighthouse route so I’m sure that had a lot to do with my legs feeling so heavy, but also the no rest days since Monday were probably catching up to me.

Sunday – Rest Day!

We got a little snow this morning but it’s all melted by now and the sun is shining. I’m making chicken pot pie for dinner and spending the whole day in my pajamas, playing video games with my kids, cleaning a bit, and finishing up my library book. I finally re-organized my sock drawer which had gotten out of control and I planted a kitchen window herb planter. I’m enjoying the calm before things get busy again next week.

Linking up as always with HoHo and Wendy for the Weekly Wrap.


Boston Marathon Training: Week 9

I’m halfway through my 18 week training plan and feeling really strong. I’m doing the Pfitzinger 18/55 plan which is the most aggressive marathon training plan I’ve tried so far (this will be my 5th marathon). It’s been a challenge to make time for the runs but I feel like it’s really paying off. Even the long, hard runs are starting to feel ok.

Monday: Rest Day

There’s a manicure place that opened up in the same building as my office. I didn’t have enough time today for yoga so I opted for a different way to treat myself.

Tuesday: Easy 6 miles treadmill

I kept the pace a tad over 9 min miles. I think I was still sore from the Sunday 19 miler, but this was fine.

Wednesday: 14 miles treadmill

I’m pretty sure this is a new treadmill high score for me. Average pace for the first 9.5 miles was 9:06. Then I hoped off to go to the bathroom and finished the last 4.5 at 8:56.

This scheduled run has been the boogeyman for me in this training plan. The Pfitzinger plan includes a medium-long run like this each week with 14 miles being the longest. I was pretty sure I’d have to creatively split this one up somehow.

But you know what takes longer than running 14 miles on a treadmill? Running 7 miles twice in one day on a treadmill. You have to go to the gym twice, change clothes twice, shower twice…

I decided to just get up early and get it done. I started around 6:15 and just kept going. And you know what? It was totally fine. I don’t want to do it every day, but it felt easier overall than the 6 miles the day before. Figure that one out.

Thursday: 6 miles recovery treadmill

I did this one during my lunch break. Average pace 8:54.

Friday: Rest day

I play banjo and fiddle in a bluegrass/folk/Americana band. We had a gig at a new place on Friday that used to be a church and now is a Hobbit-themed bar with a really great stage. We went on 2nd which meant that we didn’t start until 10pm and finished at 12. I usually go to sleep at 9:30. It was a good day to have a rest day. I basically drank a bunch of coffee and saved my energy.

Saturday: 6 miles with 6×100 strides OUTSIDE!

This was a rough run after being up so late the night before. We didn’t get home until 1:30am. I didn’t feel super strong, but the sun was out and I was outside so you can’t beat that. I took two naps and played another gig at an Italian restaurant in town from 6:30-9:30. Much better hours and we get free pasta!

Sunday: 16 miles with 12 @ Marathon Pace OUTSIDE AGAIN!

This run was magical. I really think this training plan is working well for me even if I do have to sometimes run 14 miles on the treadmill.

It was sunny again. Temperature around 40. I did the same route I did a few weeks ago when I did 10 miles @ marathon pace and temporarily lost my car key. That run had been hard and I’d had to take short breaks a couple of times which was bad for my self esteem. Afterward, I decided I’d been running too fast so I made an effort this time to look at my garmin more often and stick as close to 8 min miles as possible.

I wouldn’t say it felt easy, but it felt kind of easy. As in, running 19 miles last week as slow as I wanted felt harder than this. I took a vanilla gu halfway through and had a large container of water with a nuun tablet that I drank out of before and after.

MP splits: 7:59, 8:03, 8:00, 7:56, 8:02, 7:58, 7:57, 7:58, 7:51, 8:11, 8:02, 7:51

Next week is a recovery week and that will conclude the Endurance + Lactate Threshold phase of training. Even with last week’s bad runs due to Ecoli recovery I feel like I’m solidly on track.

I’m linking up with HoHo and Wendy for the weekly wrap. I hope everyone has a great week!


Boston Marathon Training – Weeks 7/8: Not as Planned


The last .10 miles of 19.2 miles

Flexibility is key, my running sisters.

After a fantastic week 7 I was actually looking forward to my 18-miler. I’d nailed all my runs that week – even the treadmill tempo run which had been my nemesis this cycle.

I woke last week on Sunday feeling not quite right. I’d been out late the night before doing karaoke with friends. I took mental stock of how much wine I’d had…definitely not enough to feel like this. Pretty soon I got a text from one of my friends saying his wife was puking every 10 minutes.

Conversation with my husband:

Me: If I have something like what she has I need to start running now before it hits.

Husband: This is a bad idea.

Me: I’ll stop when I feel bad.

Husband: Do not do this.

I agreed to give it some time to see what would develop. A couple of hours later I was completely down and out. It was bad. Like, shivering while sweating and not keeping anything down all day bad.

My friend ended up going to the hospital for IV fluids. The best guess of her doctors is Ecoli. I’ll not be going back to that karaoke place.

In comes week 8.

It was supposed to be a pretty aggressive week ending in 20 miles.

Monday: hahahaha. Rest day obviously.

Tuesday: 3 miles

I felt ok so hopped on the treadmill for my scheduled 7 miles with 8 sprints. After about 1.5 miles I realized I’d been way too optimistic. I felt bad. Time to cut this one short.

I texted my sister who’s training to BQ in March and got sidelined for a bit with knee issues. She’s back in training, faster and stronger than ever. I’m really happy things are going well for her, and also it was super reassuring to hear that her time off didn’t make her lose any fitness.

Wednesday: 6 miles

Schedule for today was 12. I did what I felt like doing and tried to keep in mind that I’m a lifetime runner, not just a one-race runner. The goal of this week just needed to be to get healthy and not overdo it.

Most of marathon training is pushing yourself out of your comfort zone. You have to be able to keep going when your body says stop. This week flipped that on it’s head. It’s a mindset I haven’t been in for a long time. When my body said stop I had to stop and be happy that I could do that much.

Thursday: Rest Day Yay!

Friday: 8 miles with 5 at Half Marathon Pace

Plan was 10 miles with 6 at half marathon pace. This was the first day I felt like I was getting my mojo back. I scaled back my ‘half marathon pace’ to 8 min mile and that felt like the right effort. Near the end of the 5 fast miles I was feeling that old familiar “I’m done” feeling from earlier in the week so I cut the tempo short and did enough slow cool down miles to get to a nice round number. The end for the day.

Saturday: 5 recovery miles

Nailed it. My first run outside since getting sick and I felt good for the first time all week.

Sunday: 19.2 miles

20 miles on the schedule. I went out today with the goal of hitting last week’s 18 mile distance and the realization that I might have to call for a pickup at any time.

This run was tough. I was definitely feeling the lack of training from earlier in the week. But after a while I was able to tap into that run trance that happens when you know you have a long way to go and the only way to get there is to keep putting one foot ahead of the other until enough time passes.

At mile 15 I decided I had enough in me to split the difference between last week’s 18 miles and this week’s 20 miles. I finished feeling sore, but really good about how I handled this entire recovery week. I  kept myself moving, but stopped when it was time to stop. Sometimes stopping when it’s time to stop is as hard as continuing when it’s time to continue.

After taking a week off from blogging, I’m happy to be linking up again with HoHo and Wendy for the Weekly Wrap.