Training Update: Week #7

Seven weeks! I can hardly believe it. After last week’s pretty good high (feeling like I can actually do this), it’s no surprise that this week wasn’t quite as magical. Not terrible. I just didn’t hear any angels singing and hallelujah choruses while running. Hmmm.

Week #7’s Workouts

-Monday: ran 3 miles in the early a.m. – took our puppy Maggie (1 year old golden retriever) running with me for the first time since I’m scared of the dark (no really, I am) but realized she still needs lots of practice to run without it being a terrible upper-arm workout for me to keep her in line on the leash. It was kind of an exhausting run because of that but she’s awfully cute so I’ll let it slide this one time.

-Tuesday: loving your suggestions, did this video on FitnessBlender.com (great site with tons of free videos, many of which I’ve already bookmarked to try out) in the morning + some good stretching.

-Wednesday: had an already early start to a busy, busy day so didn’t end up running until the night (which I hate and usually lose my motivation). Thanks to a crazy schedule between me and Brian that night and not being able to leave the kids and run outside, I had to do this 4 miles on the treadmill which I was dreading (3 miles on the treadmill has been my max so far), but surprisingly, it wasn’t as bad as I thought (I mean, I wanted to die, but not die-die, if that makes sense)

-Thursday: rest day (I take back what I said in the opening paragraph, I actually think I did hear angels singing this day)

-Friday: my kids were out of school today so I did a quick yoga/stretching video (again on FitnessBlender.com – this one) while they ate breakfast and then we went on an hour long bike ride down to the pet store to get Maggie a bone since it was her one year birthday. Talk about a quad workout – we encountered some serious hills magnified by the fact that I had a 40-pound toddler on the back of my bike.
Half Marathon Training Week #7

-Saturday: ran 5 miles. I was very, very nervous since this distance isn’t one I’ve run yet during training. I know it’s only one more mile from last week’s long run but one mile might as well be 100 miles right now. Because of our loaded Saturday (all-day wrestling tournament + grocery shopping + house chores + church meetings), I rose at the unearthly hour of 6:45 a.m. (unearthly only because it was Saturday, I guess, even though I know it’s not really that early) and started out. My sweet friend, Deb, had let me borrow her Garmin earlier in the week so I didn’t bother mapping out a running course (which I usually do in advance in my car to judge the mileage). Come to find out, you have to actually push the start button on the dang Garmin for it to track your mileage (no comment, I know). About halfway through when I stopped to stretch, I looked down at the watch (I hadn’t earlier because I didn’t want to psych myself out that I had run, like, 4 miles and it had only been half a mile or something) and realized it still only said 16 ft. Bummer. I had no idea how far I had run or how far I still needed to run to get my 5 miles in and I was already really tired. I mentally calculated what I thought would be about a 5 mile course based on where I’d run in the past and kept chugging along (oh, and remembered to push the start button this time). The picture below is what the Garmin tracked the last half of the run when I was almost home.
Half Marathon Training Week #7

I was so exhausted at this point. I had been running for an hour and could barely make myself keep going but the alternative (sitting down on the curb for the rest of forever) was worse since I knew if I stopped, I’d never start again. If this all over the place run taught me anything, it was that I benefit greatly from structured running.

In the end, after I drove the course to check the mileage, I realized I had actually overrun – by almost a mile. The good news is that I ran almost 6 miles (no way!). The bad news is that I ran almost 6 miles (I’m so sore today, it’s not even funny).

So there’s the not-so-quick recap to the week. I’m very relieved that this upcoming week is a lighter week (3, 3, 4 mile runs).

I’m Realizing…

…how difficult it is to fit running in with my busy family and life. I know thousands of people do it but that has hands-down been my greatest challenge and is partly why we ended up on a family bike ride Friday to get exercise in and why I’m trying to embrace the early morning or late night runs.

Brian and the kids have been very supportive – it’s just the fact that time is time and I usually feel like I’m out of it (not to mention that because family time is more and more precious these days with the kids getting older, I’m not willing to sacrifice much or any of that time to get a run in by myself). When I got back from my unplanned-extra-long-gonna-die run Saturday, I blazed into the house right as Brian blazed out of the house to get Jackson to weigh-in at the wrestling tournament 30 minutes away. I hustled in our bathroom to get showered and saw post-it notes scattered across the mirror and doors with notes from Brian. And I realized I’m so lucky to have a husband who is not only supportive but also insanely proud of me. It kind of, almost made the sore muscles and early morning worth it.
Half Marathon Training Week #7

Also (stop reading if you don’t want TMI), I’ve wondered how my stomach would fare with running after all the horror stories I’ve heard of people having “issues” during a run. So far, my runs are just fine (still not eating anything beforehand and so far it’s working although I’ll probably have to add something in as the runs get longer) but the 1-2 hours after the 4+ mile runs? Yeah, staying close to home is a really good idea, if you know what I mean.

Coming Up + A Few Notes

-Running 3 miles Monday, 3 miles Wednesday, and 4 miles probably Friday or Saturday with some cross-training a couple days + stretching

-I have one particular hamstring that likes to tighten up after running and used my foam roller Brian bought me for my birthday for the first time this week – and it was fantastic. I couldn’t believe how quickly the soreness went away after rolling for 5-10 minutes.

-I’m getting excited to meet many of you at the race in June! I have some fun details to share in the next few weeks about a meet-up after the race + some t-shirt announcements for those that might be interested in getting one for before, during or after the race.

Thanks for your support everyone! Share with me how YOUR running week went. In other words, distract me from my pain, pretty please.