This week marks the end of the last “hard” training week before Garden Spot Village Marathon. It started off kind of “meh”, but by the end of the week I felt like I got my groove back! I guess those 3 days of rest while I was recovering from whatever weird head thing/stomach virus I had going on did me good! I’ll admit it, sometimes my boyfriend IS right, but shhh! Don’t tell him I said that! My first two runs this week were on the treadmill, and to be honest I wasn’t really feeling it. This has felt like the longest/coldest winter ever (I’m sure I”m being a TAD melodramatic! Haha) but mentally I am done with the treadmill for a while and craving more time in the great outdoors!
Then Friday came…I was so excited to get off work early; I grabbed a yummy lunch at Noodles and Company, bought two new pairs of super cute running tights at TJ Maxx (Seriously surprised by their selection of fitness wear and the great prices!), and drove to Lake Elkhorn planning to run 10 miles. As I am parking my car dockside, it starts pouring down rain. Murphy’s Law in action, right? I contemplated waiting until after I picked up my daughter from school, then running on my treadmill when we got home…then I decided to be honest with myself, I so wasn’t going to do that!! So I sucked it up, threw on a baseball hat and my running gloves and took off. I got lost a couple of times so I ended up running 11 miles instead of 10; not really sure how that is possible to get lost on a loop, but I impress myself sometimes! 😉 After the first mile, I realized that running in the rain is actually a lot of fun (something I will remind myself of next time I’m contemplating on being a wuss! Haha), I was running as fast as I could splashing in puddles and “bolting” up and down some of the docks. (I tend to act like a big kid when I’m running!) Just as I was finishing my run, the rain stopped and the sun was out. When I got home and uploaded my run to Garmin connect I was shocked, 1:13:29 (6:41 overall pace!?!) Huh?! Outside of VERY short distance “bursts” (up to half a mile) during speed work, I have never ran that fast before. It is possible that my Garmin glitched in the rain? I’m just going to go with the optimistic explanation, that I just had one of those super rare, in the zone, perfect running days. 🙂
I also ran a solid 20 miler today, which was a relief after my GU+GI track disaster on my last 20 miler. Between my fun splish/splashing lake run Friday, a new 5K PR on Saturday, and a confidence boosting 20 miler today; I had three consecutive days of happy running and am going into my 3 week taper before Garden Spot feeling positive.
The quick Run-Down:
- Wednesday-Run 5 on treadmill (Moderate/Tempo Run)
- Thursday– Run 2.5 on treadmill
- Friday-Run 11 at Lake Elkhorn
- Saturday– Barlowe 5K (New PR, 23:11 🙂 + 2 miles easy on my treadmill in the afternoon
- Sunday-Run 20 on B&A Trail (In 2:53:11, 8:40 pace, best training 20 miler ever! 🙂 )
1) Sometimes breaks are good.: Training can wear you down physically and emotionally, and a nice break helps you recharge to come back strong. (I know this is kind of repeat from last week when I was taking time off, BUT I can be a slow learner and reaffirming lessons is necessary sometimes! ;-))
2) Nutrition makes a huge difference in performance!: This week I ate lots of vegetarian lunches from Trader Joe’s (Love their salads and wraps!) and managed the “perfect” carb load before my 20 miler. I’m beginning to discover (through trial and error) that too much protein makes me feel bloated and clean/plain carbs like whole grain pasta and brown rice are like magic for my legs! My energy levels were up and my stomach issues at bay this week!
3) Not getting pedicures=ugly but very tough feet: I usually get pedicures once a month to keep my footsies open toe worthy despite the beating I put on them running. I have not had time (or incentive) to get one this winter, so my feet are busted (I’m not going to lie, I think I could walk on hot coals right now and be totally ok! Lol) but I have been noticing they get less tender and sore during my long runs. (Major conundrum that I’ll try to sort out by the summer!)
4) Don’t be afraid to run in the rain! : Or any other weather for that matter! There is running gear for virtually any weather, and running outside (even in less than perfect conditions) is so good for the body, soul, and mind!
5) Be happy for my own accomplishments: I need to work on being a bit less competitive (*Gasp* My friends are shocked, right?! Haha), learn to run MY OWN race/training run/etc, and be happy/proud of my accomplishments and how far I’ve come as a runner over the last few years. For *teeny tiny* minute, I considered NOT saying anything about winning my race on Saturday, because I knew it wasn’t the fastest or most competitive 5K time. Everyone talks about running that sub-20 5K, right? I realized I was being ridiculous and needed to just be happy about MY PR/1st time ever placing in a road race/super cool goodie bag/fabulous friends/and the awesome cause we were supporting!
6) To remember I am truly blessed: To be strong and healthy enough to run and to be surrounded by positive people who support me and are proud of me.
Happy training everyone!