Training Update: Great week with some PR’s and wins!

Sorry that I’m late on the post, I’ve just had a crazy weekend and Monday! I had a great week, with a PR on my virtual 10k and an age group win for a 15k. This next week is my last full week of training for the Holy Half, and I’m pretty excited to see how it all goes.

Monday: Rest + some yoga!
I did an hour of vinyasa on my own at home, but I took it pretty easy. It was nice to have a day off, especially the day before attempting to PR on my 10k for Kristina’s Virtual Race!

Tuesday: 6.2 Virtual Race + Yoga
I had a great time running the Race for Paws 10k! I went out a little too fast for my first mile, so I certainly did some serious suffering. However, I managed to finish in 51:28, which was a pretty big PR for me (my previous PR was set during the A1A Half Marathon, so I knew I had it in me to push). I did some hot yoga afterwards to stretch the body out, and generally felt pretty great.

Wednesday: Easy 3.5 with run group! + Yoga
I went out for my weekly run with the Fleet Feet run group. They changed the start location, which is only a half mile from my house. Now I can just run there! I ran 3 miles with the group and then we all stayed for some food. It was a pretty easy pace, which was nice, especially since I had pushed myself the day before. My pace was 9:52.

Obligatory group run photo. Yeah, we are a nerdy group.
Obligatory group run photo. Yeah, we are a nerdy group.

Thursday: Intervals! (4.5 miles)
I had a great time doing my intervals. I did a warm up mile and then ran timed intervals on Notre Dame’s campus. It was nice to do a few minutes of all out intermixed with some easy running. I felt great after the run and had pretty good runner’s high. Overall pace was 8:53, including warm up and cool down.

Friday: Rest… for real! 
I took Friday to chill, since I had a race the next day! Frank and I checked out the trail conditions before the race though…

Is that a trail or a creek?
Is that a trail or a creek?

Saturday: 15K Trail race! + hiking
So… it had been raining for two days by the time I got to the trails and it was MUDDY! Like… foot stuck in the mud, muddy. I’m going to write a race review on this, so, I’ll tell you more then. It was slow going and hard to run, but I finished 4th for women and 1st in my age group, despite crossing the finish line with only one shoe on (more on that later). We did some hiking afterwards, but tried to stay away from the super muddy trails (which was like, most of them).

Uh...yeah. I am definitely running through the finish line with my shoe in my hand. Priceless.
Uh…yeah. I am definitely running through the finish line with my shoe in my hand. Priceless.

Sunday: 3.4 recovery run + hiking
I camped Saturday night at the park that held the race, and woke up to beautiful sun and warm temps. I just couldn’t resist, so I went for a short recovery run through the park. (9:02 pace)

I couldn't resist to go out on such a beautiful day!
I couldn’t resist to go out on such a beautiful day!

This was a pretty great week and I am starting to feel ready to run the Holy Half in a little over a week. I’m not sure what to expect from that race, but we’ll see.

How did your training go this week? Were you surprised that Ryan Hall didn’t finish LA? Also, Lizzy totally kicked LA’s (and Ryan Hall’s) butt at the marathon on sunday! 

Some Goals, Weather, and a Dream!

This weekend is the season opener for the DINO trail racing series, and I couldn’t be more excited! I’ll be headed to Mounds State Park on Friday, to camp and wake up early for a 15K. The best part is… husband is running too! He’s doing the 5K, but I’m pretty excited to have him racing with me. He isn’t often a runner, but it’s fun when he comes out. The race is likely to be a muddy one. The snow has melted on the trails and it is projected to rain on Friday and Saturday. I guess that just makes for interesting trail conditions.

Perfect recipe for some muddy trails. Bring it on!
Perfect recipe for some muddy trails. Bring it on!

Typically I don’t have time goals for trail races, since the terrain and trail conditions play such a large role in race difficulty. I’ll be shooting for 1:35:00, but my only real goal is to just have fun and run a smart race.

I completed Kristina’s Virtual 10K for Team Paws today! It was pretty awesome, and I walked away with a PR! To make the day even better, it was warm enough to wear shorts. Spring has finally arrived.

I'm getting fast! This was a pretty big PR for me.
I’m getting fast! This was a pretty big PR for me. 

So, I have a surprise. It’s more of a dream right now, but I wanted to tell you, since it could really change my training in the next few months…

Screen Shot 2015-03-10 at 3.08.43 PM

I entered the lottery to run the Chicago Marathon. I realize that most people will not be picked, but hey, maybe I will. I’ve always wanted to run Chicago. I was in town a few years ago during the marathon and it looked awesome. It would be my first, and I think it would be a pretty awesome race to debut at. We’ll see what happens…

Anyone else looking to do Chicago? What do you think about trail racing? Also, go wish Lizzy good luck on her Marathon this weekend! 

Training Update: Spring is here!!

This week began with temperatures in the single digits, but ended with highs of 45 degrees. I’m pretty excited about the change, and I’m hoping that the snow leaves for good. I’m definitely feeling a lot better than I was a week ago, and I’m back to my usual training intensity. Also, I jumped on the bandwagon and got a Believe Training Journal. I gotta say, I love it. There are lots of helpful hints on training and also on what you should include in a training journal. The material in it is light hearted, and it helped me keep track of how I felt all week.

My Believe Training Journal. I think this will help me track potential injuries and things that really work for me in training. I still need to write out my goals.
My Believe Training Journal. I think this will help me track potential injuries and things that really work for me in training. I still need to write out my goals.

Monday: Rest day
I felt pretty terrible, and ended up taking the afternoon off from work to sleep.

Tuesday: More Rest
I was still feeling pretty icky, so I laid low, went into work late and did not run.

Wednesday: 3.1 miles on treadmill + Yoga
I was feeling a lot better and decided to run. I didn’t really want to run in the cold with such a terrible cough, so I went to the gym and ran for 30 minutes on the treadmill. I took it really slow and just focused on my breathing. I had to stop a few times from coughing, but I felt ok and pretty strong, despite the cold.

Thursday: Unintentional 0 miles + Yoga
I had intended to run on Thursday, but I got stuck at work until pretty late. I had to teach yoga at 8 pm and I took the class before mine and did most of my class along with the students. I didn’t really want to run at the gym late at night, so I just went home to rest. I wanted to run, just didn’t work out. Eh….Oh well.

Friday: Hill Repeats x 6 – total of 4.4 miles + yoga
Friday was the first day that I felt totally fine again. It was also 7 degrees. I sucked it up and ran outside with a 10 minute warm up, and then 6 times up and down the only hill in town. It isn’t exactly big, but I tried to keep a pretty good pace on the way up to tire myself out. Worked pretty well, and I had major runner’s high afterwards. I warmed down for about 10 minutes and kept an overall pace of 9:15/mile. Pretty fun workout! Yoga was awesome, as per usual.

This is the only hill in South Bend.
This is the only hill in South Bend.

Saturday: Easy 4.3 miles + Hiked 6 miles
Saturday had a high of 45 degrees (I know, it was 7 the day before. The midwest is nuts!), so Frank and I took the opportunity and went hiking at a state park close by. The trails were covered in snow, but the skies were blue and it was wonderful to finally be able to be outside without a jacket. In the afternoon, Frank biked while I ran along a bike trail about 30 minutes outside South Bend. It was relaxing and fun! I tried to keep it chill and had a pace of 9:30/mile.

Running along the scenic Pumpkinvine Trail.
Running along the scenic Pumpkinvine Trail.

Sunday: 12 mile long run + Yoga
Ah, finally a long run. I missed mine last week from being sick and I was really happy to get out. The day was perfect too, with blue skies and warm (for Indiana) weather. I ran along the river, at my usual long run spot. Miles 10 and 11 were kinda slow, since I was on tired legs from running three days in a row. Besides that, it felt great to be out there. I kept a 9:34/mile pace.

Nice view for my long run! I'm loving the spring weather.
Nice view for my long run! I’m loving the spring weather.

Total Milage: 23.8

I’m pretty excited about this upcoming week. I have the first trail race of the season on saturday, and the temperatures are supposed to make it all the way up to 60 degrees. I can’t wait to be running in comfortable weather and IN SHORTS! The trail race is at Mounds State Park and is through the Do Indiana Outdoors trail series. I’m pretty excited for this one, and hopefully I’ll get to participate in a few more of their events. Next week should look something like this:

Monday: Rest
Tuesday: Kristina’s Virtual 10K
Wednesday: Recovery Run with Run Group
Thursday: Intervals
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 15K Trail Race
Sunday: Recovery Run

How was your week? Is the weather looking better where you are too? 

It’s cold here in the midwest!

Wow… This week has really been a wonderful experience. I really can’t believe A1A is over AND that I totally crushed my A goal with a time of 1:56:45 for my half marathon debut. On top of all of that… I signed up for the A1A Half Marathon again next year. It was an extremely positive experience and I can’t wait to do it again. But now I’m back in the midwest and hitting the training hard.

Uh... why do people live here?!
Uh… why do people live here?!

I have a few running related things up on my to do list over the next few months. The DINO trail series starts up again in less than a month and I am planning to do a few of their races again this year. The season begins with a 15K at Mounds State Park on March 14, about 2 hours south of town. I never really plan a real time goal for trail races because every race is so different. Depending on how they make the course, there can be sections of bush whacking and river crossings that really slow you down. Trail running is really just a fun experience and pretty scenery. But I gotta say, I love doing it.

My next big goal is the Holy Half Marathon. I have no idea what to expect and I am sure a lot of it depends on weather. I am not very good at running in the cold, which may have been the reason I over-estimated my pace so much before A1A. If the temperatures are reasonable, I’ll probably shoot for getting into the 1:55’s. If the weather is bad, I’ll just aim to finish.

Elly has done a good job of keeping me warm despite the temperatures.
Elly has done a good job of keeping me warm despite the temperatures.

So, how did training go this week? I was tired and it was SO COLD! I had to take a few of my runs inside even though I hate treadmills. My long run was with a few of the professors in my department, so not only was I intimidated by running 10 miles one week after a half, but I was also intimidated by the people. There was certainly some suffering, but less than I would expect given the conditions.

Monday: Rest Rest Rest
Tuesday: 3 very slow miles on treadmill
Wednesday: Yoga
Thursday: 4 very slow miles outside + yoga
Friday: 4 miles + yoga
Saturday: Cross country ski
Sunday: 10 mile long run

Total: 21 miles

I was a little worried about doing 10 miles after my half, but I was so intimidated by running with the professors in my department that I kept it together. Peer pressure I guess.
I was a little worried about doing 10 miles after my half, but I was so intimidated by running with the professors in my department that I kept it together. Peer pressure I guess.

This next week I am switching over to Matt Fitzgerald’s half marathon training plan. His method is to run by time and heart rate, not by milage, which is what I am used to. I’ve heard good things about his plan, but my main reason for making the switch is that he has some pretty good speed word in his plan, which is what I am really looking to add to my training. He also has some pretty strict nutrition plans, but I’ll see if I stick to that.

Next week training:

Monday: Rest Rest Rest
Tuesday: Intervals
Wednesday: 40 minutes easy + yoga
Thursday: Figure out max heart rate (20 min run) + yoga
Friday: Tempo run + yoga
Saturday: Hiking?
Sunday: 12 mile long run

What are your upcoming plans? Have you ever tried to train by time instead of milage?

training update with very little training

The A1A Half Marathon is 33 days away and for the past week, I have not been training. I came down with the flu and was too sick to be awake, no less to run. This certainly causes some hiccups in the training plan, but I am more concerned about getting over the flu than breaking 2 hours on my first half marathon. I am not sure when I’ll be back to my usual intensity, but if all goes well, I’ll try for a (slow) 30 minute run on wednesday to kind of shake it all out. Send me lots of positive and healthy vibes while my immune system finishes up this battle.

Pretty excited for my half marathon line up!
I am committed to the Holy Half in March. Pretty excited for my half marathon line up! Isn’t their logo cute?

In the mean time, I signed up for my next half marathon of the season, the Holy Half at the University of Notre Dame. This is where I go to grad school and many of my friends have ran the race. It is student run, and isn’t particularly fast (there are a lot of turns to keep it on campus), but it is the race that goes through my usual running grounds, so I gotta do it! I am not sure what my goals will be, which will likely be very dependent on how well the A1A half goes. As we get closer, I’ll update you on all of that.

Last summer, I participated in a race series called DINO (Do INdiana Outdoors), which has trail races, triathlons and mountain bike races. This year, I am hoping to do a few more of their races. March 14th kicks off their series with a 15K trail run not too far from my house. They have a few other trail races that I have my eye on. Here is my plan for races over the next few months.

Feb 15 – A1A Half Marathon

March 14 – DINO Mounds State Park Trail 15K

March 28 – Holy Half Marathon

April 25 – DINO Town Trail Run 15K

So, as I try to get better, I am signing up for races. It is a good motivator to eat well and sleep a lot so that I am ready to kick some serious butt. I’ll keep you updated on how my training goes over these next few weeks, but any advice on getting back after you’ve been pretty sick is very much appreciated!