September 11, 2011

Memphis Marathon Training: Week 4

It's time for week 5 already?! That means the Memphis Marathon is only 3 months away! Yikes. Things are going better for me, after weeks of zombie-like exhaustion. I think I finally either found somewhat of a balance for rest and training, or I'm just used to being tired. Whatever the reason, I've been considerably less whiny lately. This week, I ran all of my training runs with friends! And in cool weather! Happiest training week ever.

I was supposed to run 5 repeats of 1K at the track with 400 meter rest intervals...but it was Labor Day and time for the annual Free Bella Vista 5K and pancake breakfast, so I ran that instead. Sadly, they don't like for you to take rest intervals during races. I mean, you can, but it won't work out well. So I met up with some of my favorite running buddies and ran the hilliest little 5K ever. It was lovely, and I had such a good time. Trea set a new PR and finished in 25:55!

3.1 miles/31:25/10:08 avg. pace

Over the holiday weekend, we also celebrated Trea's birthday! He had mentioned wanting to add strength work and tone up, but we both hate the gym, so I got him Insanity. We tried Day 1 on Monday evening, which is a Fit Test to see how much you can handle before starting the program. Oh. My. Word. It was truly insane. In my living room. We had to move the furniture back to make room for the craziness, and we spent the first 10 minutes laughing hysterically because we both have ZERO coordination. We were going the opposite direction that we were supposed to be going, scaring the dogs with all our jumping around, and at one point, Trea almost kicked the TV. It was out of control. Also, it was REALLY hard. Insanity is definitely an amazing workout, but it is not good (for us) to combine with marathon training. Yikes. We'll try again after the race is over. By that time, the weather will be cold and nasty and no fun for running anyway.

30 minutes of Insanity/Survived

Cross Train
I woke up on Tuesday barely able to walk after running crazy hills at a 5K pace and then jumping around with Insanity like a maniac. Muscles in my lower back were sore that I didn't even know existed. My legs were painfully tight and stiff. I foam rolled my legs when I woke up, again over lunch, and used The Stick in the evening, but they were still in knots. For that reason, we went for a walk instead of a bike ride. The weather was gorgeous, and we walked around the Bella Vista trail. We took our dog Bella with us and had such a good time! Near the end of our walk, we found a stick that was perfect for fetching and threw it into the creek. Bella swam and swam and LOVED it! We finally had to make her go home; I think she would've fetched that stick until she collapsed. When we got home, Trea said, "Did you take any pictures of Bella swimming in the creek?" And my jaw hit the floor. Normally, I take tons of pictures and he gets so annoyed with me and wants to just enjoy the moment instead of trying to document it. Before we left for our walk, I purposely left behind my camera and even my phone so I wouldn't be tempted to "ruin the moment" by snapping photos. So you'll just have to trust me, and Trea will have to rely on his memory. Bella was adorable.

Walked 2 miles

6 Tempo
My legs were still screaming on Wednesday, and I was not looking forward to this run. I've learned that my Wednesday tempos are the worst runs of the whole week. Running at a faster speed for a longer distance at the end of a work day is just no fun. But this week, my training friends who also hate Wednesday runs were available to meet up and get it over with together. Lori and Alicia ran with me and Trea, and we were all still sore from our previous runs and just not feeling it. I stopped us 3 miles in to stretch out my cramping calves, but for the most part, we kept a decent pace. Running in a group is so much easier than running alone. It can be hard to find a comfortable pace because there's always someone who wants to go slower (me) or faster (them), but usually, we can meet in the middle, find a pace that will work for everyone and get the miles done. When you're running with other people, you know you can't quit. If I had been alone, I would've quit at 4 miles for sure.

6.02 miles/1:03:42/10:35 avg. pace

Cross Train Packers vs. Saints!
First game of the season means an automatic rest day! Priorities, people.


11 Long
My longest training run yet! When I trained for the Bentonville Half Marathon, I only built up to 10 miles before running 13.1 on race day, so I was pretty nervous about this run. After taking two rest days though, my legs felt fresh, and everything went great. It was a cool 55 degrees and overcast skies, which makes a perfect running day.

11 miles/2:03:00/11:10 avg. pace

I've been running my long runs faster than my training plan says to, and I'm going to try to stop doing that. I'm fine with speeding up toward the end of the run if I can, but I've been running the whole thing faster than I should because I love running with my group, and I know everyone doesn't want to run a 12:00 pace. But as the miles progress through this plan, the prescribed paces will get slightly faster. I can run these miles now faster than a 12:00 average, but I'm not sure if I should. I read something today that said one of the biggest training mistakes you can make is running your long runs too fast. The paces I've been running are tolerable, but it feels like I'm running my race pace each week when my plan says I should run slower than that -- on purpose -- even though I'm capable of running faster. At the end of my training plan, I'll run faster, but right now, it looks like I'm just supposed to be building up my endurance and getting my legs used to running long miles. I know I'm a rookie, but from what I've read, it just doesn't seem like you're supposed to go out and run your race pace every single week...even if that seems slow to most people. I'm running this marathon just to finish. I don't have a time goal; it would be unwise to set one. So it seems like ignoring my plan is not a good decision, and if that means I end up running alone for the last half of my long runs, I'm totally fine with that. I know what comes the week after a long run, and I have to make sure I don't sap all my energy and miss out on the rest of my workouts.

Thankfully, I feel fine today, even though I ran a bit too fast yesterday. The cool weather gave me a boost, and it felt great just to run and not have to wheeze through 90% humidity. But this week, I'm going to try to stick to the pace the plan tells me to and see how that goes.

Total running mileage for the week: 20.5-ish

12 weeks till Memphis!

1 comment:

  1. You're right, it IS hard to keep a slow pace for your LSD. I struggle with the same thing. But you're right, it's important. If you do ALL of your runs at mp, you have a greater risk of injury and burn out. Your building endurance, not speed on this long runs. Thanks for the good reminder!



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