Sunday, February 19, 2012

half marathon training [week 7]

Another week down! We're getting closer and closer to April 1. I'm a little nervous, but mostly excited to earn my half marathon medal. You better believe I'm going to wear that thing out to lunch afterward.

Monday was the usual three mile run. I had trouble on this one because the snow from Friday and Saturday was completely covering the sidewalks in places, pushed there by snow blowers and snow plows. I did a lot of slogging through snow covered areas and it killed my time. Still, I finished in 33 minutes which isn't bad considering.

Tuesday was a six mile run, the longest weekly run of the training. I really struggle with six miles. I'm not sure why. I think it's because it doesn't seem quite long enough that I should need to conserve my energy, so I tend to go out at a 5k pace. Then I die at about three miles because I can't maintain that for six miles! I ran a new route that took me through the county fairgrounds, which is a pretty run. I definitely need new shoes, because my legs and hips started to hurt about halfway through. I stopped, stretched, and finished pretty strong. It helped that the last three miles were mostly downhill (I did out and back, so I deserved it after going uphill on the way out!), so I was increasing my pace by ten seconds for each mile. It's always nice to finish strong.

Wednesday was another Tough Mudder workout. I've been bad at doing these twice a week--I need to get back to that. I missed Thursday's easy one mile run (on a day with beautiful weather, no less) because I had a migraine. Ick. On top of the migraine, Luke came down with a stomach bug Thursday night, so I was up taking care of him and cleaning linens until midnight that night, only to have him get up sick again at three AM. To say I was tired Friday would be an understatement, so I definitely couldn't find the energy to do the Tough Mudder workout Friday.

Saturday morning, I still felt pretty tired, but I forced myself out the door early on my run. The training plan called for eight miles, but I felt so good when I first started that I decided to add on a mile and make it nine. I forced myself to start out slow and did 11:30 mi/mi for the first two miles before I pushed it up a little. I felt pretty strong until 7.5 miles when the wind picked up straight into my face. I pretty much died at that point! I still managed a 10:38 average pace. I was hoping to get under 10:30, but the wind just killed me. This run made me realize how far I've come. When I hit five miles, I thought, "Okay, just four miles left!" Then I remembered a time when a four mile run was this big looming impossibility, because my body just seemed to shut down at three miles. I remember emailing Keli and telling her I couldn't do it. I remember how elated I felt when I DID it and now, four miles is what I consider a short run. Funny how that works. :)

I have long and longer runs coming up the next two weeks. One is a distance that I've covered once before, the other will be my longest run to date. I'm a little wary--and thinking that I probably need to start figuring out fueling for real. I know it's frowned upon, but I've ran with a hydration belt one time. It annoyed me and I never feel like I need hydration. I hydrate plenty after the run and never struggle with that, but will I need some sort of energy gel or bites? I guess I'll figure this out soon enough!


The Many Thoughts of a Reader said...

woo. i like how you just roll with it when life gets in the way and dont give up..

Bari said...

You are doing awesome! I just realized I'll be running my half in TN while you're running yours - we'll keep each other going!

Brandi said...

Long comment alert: Hi there, first off you are doing awesome!! I just ran my very first half this past Dec (LV Rock n Roll) and besides having my daughter it was the 2nd most amazing thing I've ever done. You will rock this! I trained from July-Dec and living in LV we HAVE to hydrate. I wore a camelback for anything 6 miles and over and came to not even notice I was wearing it. I wore it during my half too and I felt like I had an advantage over the other runners in that I could run through all the water stations. I also find that gel and gu is not for me. As my training got longer (10, 11 miles, etc) I would carry a ziplock bag of peanut M&Ms in my pocket and they gave me the energy I needed to eat slowly throughout my long runs. M&Ms were my husbands idea and he's run 4 halfs with 3 more on the books coming up. Good luck!!!!

Foursons said...

I think you are going to be more than ready for that 1/2 marathon. I can't wait to see how it goes!

I have decided to redo the Couch to 5K program. I really enjoyed it and maybe I can pick up my speed this second time around. I have 2 more weeks in a 200 sit-ups program and when I'm done with that, I think I will start C25K again.

InTheFastLane said...

You are doing great! There are always going to be ups and downs in training, but you will be totally ready.

I might be an exception, but I run better on an empty stomach. When I ran full marathons, I wouldn't start eating anything until around the half. And for the half, I would probably just use gatorade as fuel. But, as you run longer, experiment with what works for you. Energy gels, or beans or bananas, or nothing...I would say that as your runs hit 10 miles, start experimenting with them and see what you think.