MC Half Training Week 11

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Week 11 sort of got off on a good foot and then derailed quickly, running-wise.  However, I still managed to get some good distance covered AND enjoyed myself.

Wednesday I met up with Dan and his cousin Phil after work to do the 5 mile loop through Valley Forge Park.  I anticipated a nice, easy evening run.  My mistake was inviting the guys, because we paced a lot faster than I was hoping to do.  I did manage to stay with them for 90% of the run.

run15apr15I’ll take an 8:15 pace with decent hills any day.

Thursday is where I made the big mistake of the week.  I’ve been extremely happy having a friend like Samantha to make training plans for weight lifting for me.  I did pretty well this winter with a 12 week circuit plan, but I wanted to get back to the original 4 week plan.  My thoughts were do that plan for a month, then go back to the 12 week one.  Rotation should keep my muscles guessing and I got excited about the idea.  On Tuesday I made it to the gym during lunch to do chest/triceps work, and then Thursday is when I planned to do legs/butt/core.  I have been neglecting my legs a little at the gym and I know that’s the key to keeping my speed.  Unfortunately, spending several weeks off from squats then returning to them even with a much lower weight was not my best idea.  I got to the gym at lunch and did those, some KB swings, and a few other exercises.  I felt good.  Post-work, I felt a little sore but still went to run club for six miles.

run16apr15The run started off great, and then mile by mile my legs got increasingly heavy and unhappy with me.  I finished out the run, enjoyed a small beer with some friends, then went home.  I realized I needed to do some serious recovery or I would be hobbling for-ev-er.  So, I sucked it up and poured myself a cold bath for the first time.  I kept the water a little below 60 and stayed in for 20 min.

IMAG2593The verdict?  It wasn’t so bad after the first few minutes passed!  I am super late to the “ice bath party” but I think this is going to become a part of my routine when I do stupid things like run 11 mi and lift in a 36 hour time frame.  And also for training for the double half marathon weekend I have in July.

Sadly, the soreness was lessened but not enough for me to feel okay to do any long run this weekend.  I have outdoor soccer tomorrow morning and then indoor playoffs later in the day.  I need my legs fully healed.  So, instead of running, I took advantage of the gorgeous day and went to Lowes for a couple items…

IMAG2605It’s never just a few things, is it?  Lowes shopping is the Target shopping of your 30s where you plan to spend $10 and end up spending 10x that.  But, a few hours later the front yard area looked nicer, I threw down some wildflower seeds in a bare spot we cleaned up near the back porch, and have some other ideas brewing for the rest of the outside.  Week 11 didn’t end up quite as I planned, but I have a feeling week 12 will more than make up for it.  ;)

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MC Half Training Week 10

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Last week was a really low mileage week as I only got out for one run.  Tuesday night we had co-ed indoor playoffs which was a valiant but short effort on our team.  I didn’t get out for a run again until Thursday with Conshy Run Club.  A friend came for the first time so I paced with her for an easier run.

run09apr15The following day though I noticed some pain on the inside part of my right shin.  It didn’t feel like shin splints, but I decided to bag my long run on Saturday just in case.

Sunday we had the start of our women’s outdoor soccer season and just had 11 players to field a team.  We put up a great effort and won 1-0.  I ran my ass off as my Fitbit told me I covered a good 5.56 miles during the game.  I’ll take it.  Half of us had to leave immediately after to get to a make-up indoor game from our winter Sunday league.  We were spent and again had just enough for a team.  130 minutes of soccer definitely made up for the long run I missed the day before.  My shin felt great, too!

With today’s lovely weather, I’m planning to head out for a 5-mile loop and if I still feel good do a second to make up for the missed long run.  Gotta get those miles in!  Week 11 should be significantly better than week 10.

MC Half Training Week 9

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Last week I ran three times totaling 19.32 miles.

First Run.  Wednesday after work.  Tempo run of 4 miles.

run01apr15Second Run.  Thirsty Thursday with Conshohocken Running Club.  Out and back 50ish min run.

run02apr15Third Run.  Hot Chocolate 15K.  Arrived later than expected.  VERY crowded.

hotchock15ksplitsI might go into a more detailed post about the Hot Chocolate 15K, but probably not.  It wasn’t a bad race, we didn’t aim for anything other than to stay under 8:30s and we accomplished that.  But, I think it’s safe to say I will never run that race again.  I got the medal, I got the hoodie, I’m fine leaving it at that.  Too much weaving and not enough room to really find a good stride.

Assessing my upcoming races, I’ve got the Out & Back Party Run 5K, and then the next weekend is the Broad Street Run.  I don’t really know what goals to set for these.  During the BOMF 5 Miler I clocked a 21:37 5K with a hill.  The Party Run is much flatter, but it’s on a Friday evening.  Based on my last two 5 milers, sub 8:00s sound somewhat feasible for Broad Street, but I just don’t know.

2015racesathlinksaprI am feeling strong right now with six weeks left until the Historic Half.  I had no soreness or stiffness after Saturday’s 9.3 miles.  I guess I’ll see how this weekend’s 10 mile run goes and have a better idea of what is coming up in the next few weeks.

ETA 4:46PM 08.Apr.15:

For posterity and because I am a sappy sapperson, here are some free race pics from the 15K.  I sure look happier than I felt running that race!

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Back On My Feet 5 Miler 2015 Recap

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It’s race recap time!  On Friday last week I went into the city to pick up my packet (and a handy RUN215 wristband) from Philadelphia Runner in Center City.  I scored with a parking spot on 17th street, quickly got my gear, then noticed a Federal Donuts location was right on my walk back to my car.  I just had to grab a chocolate glazed donut for the drive back in lots of rush hour traffic.  Magical.

IMAG2527I spent the evening pretty much relaxing on the couch after setting out my race gear.  I wasn’t in the mood to cook anything for dinner, but needed to get something.  Wawa to the rescue.  I got one of the bowls:  mashed potatoes, mac&cheese, buffalo chicken.  I am disgusting.  It was stupid delicious though, trust me.

IMAG2531Yup.

Bedtime came fast and I was off to dreamland before the early wakeup at 6am.  I made it into the city (downing a bagel with PB and a 5-hour Engery along the way) with ease, parked right off Spring Garden, and then walked to the start to check my gear and shiver with the other runners.

2015bomf1I’m in the RUN ALL DAY tank.  And errrr, ignore the watermark…. yeah.  Anyway.  At 8AM the race was on and I was cruising around a 7:00.  I had my Garmin on, but with the overpasses you run under during the race, it got super wonky at about 2 miles in and I’m just going to go by race splits.  So mile 1-1.5 takes you out along West River Drive.  I skipped the first water stop because I was still trying to feel my hands.

2015bomf22015bomf3I always make weird faces…

The second mile includes a wonderful hill which felt a lot tougher this year than last year.  Sore legs?  I’m not sure.  I crested at the top and tried to just truck it along to the upcoming downhill.  That part of the race felt REALLY good.  I was now pretty warm and wished I had a pocket to stash my gloves.  We hit the bottom of the downhill then you do a small turnaround to head back on West River towards the finish by the Art Museum.  This is about 3.1 miles in and clocks a split for you.  My split time:  21:37.  I ran a sub-22 5K during this race.  WHAT?!  I’m not sure where the hell that came from, but it was pretty much struggle bus to the end (I averaged an 8:04 on the last 1.9 miles).  I was exceptionally happy to hit the finish and ended up with an overall time of 36:55!  A new fricken PR!  2:32 faster than the Frostbite 5 Miler and 3:01 faster than the race last year!  I ended up finishing 1 spot lower in my age group though.  I guess a lot of faster people showed up.

Post race I met up with tons of RUN215ers and we ventured over to Bishop’s Collar for a few post-race beers.  Before 11am.  Because runners.

IMAG2535Victory tasted pretty sweet though.  Or hoppy, I guess.

I finally made my way back home and proceeded to continue to be disgusting with a delicious Five Guys Burger followed up by Aki snuggles.

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IMAG2542Successful Saturday (or Caturday if you will)?  I’d say so.  This race is a complete blast.  Not only are the organizers some of the most genuine, nicest people ever, you get to support such a great organization and that gives you tons of good feels.  At least it did for me.  I’ve now got a new 5K goal for the Out & Back Party Run, sub 22min.  Considering this race is significantly flatter, I honestly think I can do it.  Up next is the Hot Chocolate 15K this Saturday, which if I can hold my pace I had in the BOMF, I may have a shot at an age group placing?  We’ll have to see!  :D

MC Half Training Week 7

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I don’t think I am going to make my goal of running 80 miles this month.  I’m a little bummed about it, but I also didn’t anticipate having a date with the norovirus for three days and then tweaking my hip a little after soccer last Sunday (I took rest days Wed – Fri to recover, all is good now!).

So here’s what training went like for week 7.  It was actually a productive one in spite of the three rest days!

Monday – 4.35 easy miles.  I felt a bit sluggish on this run.  It was harder to keep my pace well enough below 10 min miles.  But, four miles is four miles and I got it done.

run16mar15Tuesday – 2.60 miles of sprints.  Dan is preparing for his referee fitness test and wanted to do a test-run of the intervals he needs to do.  You run 150 m fast (around a 6:15ish pace) in 35 seconds, then recover 50 m in 40 secs (~17 min mile).  Repeat that for 20 times and you’re done.  My splits of course were not set right, so it looked like I averaged close to 10 min miles, but according to Dan I passed the FIFA Women’s fitness test.  So that’s good!

Wednesday – Friday – I was feeling achy and tight in my calves, plus my left hip felt a bit wonky since Sunday night’s soccer game.  I decided to just relax and rest for a few days, especially since I had covered a little under 15 miles since Sunday.

Saturday – 4.01 faster miles.  With the snow on Friday, and then the melting warmup that followed the next day, I wanted to get out and run.  I did an easy loop through my neighborhood, but had a lot of energy from resting the past few days.  My splits were much nicer this run compared to Monday!

run21mar15Sunday – 8.2 miles for the long run.  One thing I definitely try not to skimp on during training is the long run.  Even if I miss some speedwork or an easy run, it’s really important to me to get out and do this.  I texted with my older sister for some motivation then went out for a neighborhood jog.  I averaged a 9:10 overall which is on target with my training plan.  I felt a little sore after so I made a date with the foam roller and the Tiger Tail and the soreness was gone fairly quickly.  I also had indoor soccer later which wasn’t the best of games, but we’re still in the top three for the rankings.

run22mar15Total Miles for Week 7:  19.16!

I skipped the strength plan for last week but will be hitting the weights again now.  My plan for Monday is to do chest/triceps then run 3.2 miles to celebrate my 32nd birthday today just the soccer later because it’s my birthday and I’ll be lazy if I want to.

Back On My Feet 5 Miler Giveaway Winners

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I’m so excited to announce the winners of the giveaway for two race bibs to the Back On My Feet 5 Miler!  And without further delay, here they are:

Winner #1

bomf2015winner1Comment #15 by Melissa Lopez!

Winner #2

bomf2015winner2Comment #10 by Paige Wolf!

Congratulations, ladies!  I will be contacting you shortly with the registration info!  Thanks everyone for entering and if you’d like to still register for the race, head over to Back On My Feet’s website!  Happy running!!

MC Half Training Week 6

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Week 6 of my half marathon training got off to such a rough start.  Monday I came down with a pretty bad stomach virus that lasted through to Tuesday evening.  Wednesday I felt okay enough to head back to work, but I didn’t do any kind of exercising since I didn’t have a full 24 hours of eating solid food yet.  It seems to be making the rounds as a lot of people I know had the same symptoms, including half of my siblings and my mom.  Rough.  I only ended up getting in two runs last week, but they were worthwhile.  Thursday’s track speedwork let me know my fast paces are still on point and improving, and Sunday’s windy but solid long run made me confident I am right where I need to be training-wise.

Week 6 Mileage:  12.16
Current March Mileage:  29.68

I’m a little behind schedule if I want to hit 80 miles for the month (perhaps a lofty goal in hindsight), but I think I can still get close to it in the next 15 days.  This is the plan for week 7:
Monday – 4 mi @ 9:16 (outside because it’s going to be 60!!)
Tuesday – chest/tri @ gym, track workout after work
Wednesday – back/biceps + 5 mi tempo run (or easy depending on Tuesday)
Thursday – legs/butt/core + 3-4 mi @ 9:16
Friday – Off
Saturday – 8 mi long run @ 9:16
Sunday – indoor soccer 40 min

PS – There are still a few days to enter for a free race code to the Back On My Feet 5 Miler!  Don’t wait!!!