Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Carmel Marathon Training: Week 11

Adaptation has been a recurring theme for this training cycle. I used to get so frustrated if I had planned on a running workout only to get to the gym and the treadmill was in use already. I realized after a few weeks that swapping my cycling/running days would not impact the overall cycle and that it wasn’t worth getting so frustrated over.  This Tuesday I had planned on 10x800’s. The 1st interval at a very conservative pace of 3:30 felt tough- like all 1st intervals do. The 2nd 800 still felt more labored than normal for the pace so I made it a point to run a 3rd to determine if I should continue with the workout. The 3rd 800 was by far the worst (when usually they get much easier for me)- the pace felt like it was very difficult vs the “comfortably hard” it normally is and I also had the worst side stitch in recent memory. Instead of getting frustrated and going back home, I abandoned the remaining 800’s and ran until I completed 7 miles. I was happy I adapted my workout and still got a good effort in. I analyzed the shit out of my day to try to figure out what went wrong for this workout, but there was nothing out of the ordinary. It was just an off day unfortunately.  I do get upset when I cannot replicate the good workouts though- being a performer for most of my life taught me that you could be the best singer, musician, athlete- but if you cannot replicate that magic, you are no better than the masses at that particular craft.

Monday: 6.5 mile with Kim! Highlight of the week!!
Tuesday: 10 x800’s turned 3x800’s. 7 miles total.
Wednesday: Rest Day!
Thursday: 15 mile cycle, 2 mile run (BRICK)
Friday: 8 mile run
Saturday: 7.5 mile run
Sunday: 19 mile run- more on this below

Total: 65 miles for 7:54:27
Running: 50 miles for 6:46:57 (my highest mileage week possibly ever)
Cycling: 15 miles for 1:07:30


Thursday L asked me if I wanted to go to a concert with him Friday night. My first thought was about how it would impact my final long run of this cycle. Knowing that he saw this band perform in 1991 in Sao Paulo, I said yes. I would adapt my run so we could go to the concert, and also because running isn’t everything. 

We had a great time going out to dinner followed by standing in the pit for the performance of The Cult. I wasn’t familiar with them, but they put on a great show. My back ached from standing for a few hours at the House of Blues, and my ears were ringing for 24 hours post concert, but I wouldn’t have traded that experience for sitting on the couch because I had a long run to do. 
Saturday morning we woke up late and I went for a run and got a donut for CB to celebrate his 11th anniversary of the day I adopted him. He was happy to eat human food like always. 
Saturday evening we went to eat at Umai and I had delicious ramen- perfect pre long run food. We decided to go to one of our favorite bars in Printer’s Row- Villains, and have a beer before heading back. Luiz invited some friends and one beer turned into more beer and staying out way later than I planned. We finished the night with a Malort shot, followed by a bourbon shot and a pickle back. They said If I could run long successfully in the morning after this night, I would slay the marathon. I do not regret a thing.
Sunday morning I woke up feeling hungover (not a surprise). I couldn’t even stomach the thought of eating my usual pre run crumpet and jam. I had an espresso, some OSMO pre load and some Beet Boost before eating a handful of dried apricots. I gathered some bananinhas, a gu and some salt pills for the long run. My plan was to do 16-20 miles, maybe some at goal marathon pace. I felt pretty crappy so I decided to ignore pace and just run to cover the distance. I wore my Lulu skirt to test how it would be for long distance since the last time I wore it was in July. I also wore my nike hyperwarm long sleeve plus a jacket so I could be over heated for this run so I can remain acclimated to a warmer temp. 
At miles 4 and 8 I ate a bananainha. At 8 I also ate a salt pill. Mile 12 was GU and salt pill. I also brought 25oz of OSMO with me to drink. At mile 8 I started to have some pep in my step and mile 9 I decided to try for some GMP. The splits were all over the place, but I was happy to be under 8:00 for 9 miles. I run by effort and ignore the garmin for the most part since I know it spikes and is not 100% accurate. Overall I was surprised with this last long run given the less than ideal circumstances leading up to it. Instead of getting mad and expending energy on stuff I couldn’t (or didn’t want to) change, I rolled with the punches and adapted and still had a decent run. Of course I have no plans to consume Malort and bourbon the night before any races.
Looking forward:
  • I need to nail down what I will wear for Carmel. I will wear my MRC singlet for sure. I wore my Lulu skirt and it was ok for this 19 miler, but im not sold on it yet. The Nike Pro shorts or Lulu shorts are high up on my list also.
  •   I wore my Adidas shoes again with Lulu socks and my big toes/balls of my feet got hotspots again. I have no other shoe options so this is beginning to stress me out. I’ll try them again with my swifwick socks to see if it makes a difference. I’m sure I’ll be fine, but this worries me.
  • Continuing to eat well and get enough rest is very important over the next 3 weeks.
  • I’ll be running the Shamrock Shuffle for the 5th time this Sunday. It will be a nice hard effort post back to back 10 milers. I’d like to use my time as a predictor for Carmel, but I’ll be on tired legs. Regardless, it will be fun running through the city and then celebrating with brunch afterwards with friends.
  • Continue adapting and not letting stuff out of my control bother me.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Carmel Marathon Training: Week 10

This week went well. I think. Maybe. Probably. It's been a while so whatever explicit thoughts I had concerning this week have now faded into a vague fog. I should have gotten started writing this recap on Sunday or Monday- but by Tuesday and with Tuesday's awful events, there were way more important things on my mind.

Looking back at my workouts and lack of notes, I had a great 8x800's and a shitty 13 miler. The rest of the runs/rides were just par for the course and textbook. I didn't cycle as much, but I still ran a lot.

On Sunday morning the bottom outside of my foot had some pain (scale 2 of 10) annoying but not severe. It's definitely not Plantar Fasciitis since the location and symptoms don't line up. Nor do I think it's a stress fracture since I'm healthy and also taking supplements like vitamin D (and most importantly, those symptoms aren't present) It feels like I stepped on it weird in my unsupportive flat shoes and possibly bruised it.

Thoughts about Carmel 4 weeks out:

I feel underprepared. I have low expectations for race day. I also know at this point that nothing I do now will significantly impact my fitness going into the race. The hay is mostly in the barn at this point and I'm just left sweeping up some stray pieces before I shut the doors. Had I written this on Sunday I might have had a slightly more positive outlook, but not by much. I just feel different now than I did for the 3 marathons I busted my ass for, but perhaps it's just my perception being off.


Monday: REST

Tuesday: 10 mile cycle

Wednesday: 9 mile run- 8x800's

Thursday:12 mile cycle, 2 mile run (BRICK)

Friday: 6 mile run

Saturday: 13 mile run

Sunday: 10 mile run, 15 mile cycle

Total: 77 miles for 8:12:07

Run: 40 miles for 5:27:37
Cycle: 37 miles for 2:44:30

The plan was to do 10 miles on Saturday. It was cold and I felt kind of crappy running. The effort was too much for the pace basically- If someone had asked me my pace I would have said 8:20's when in reality I was barely breaking 9:30's. I did manage a few miles at GMP once I turned around and despite feeling overly shitty, I added 3 miles to the run on purpose. 
I woke up extra early to consume more calories (2 crumpets and jam) pre run, but my stomach just felt off from the time I woke up. I didn't take water with me since I knew i'd be out there for just over an hour and dont feel lack of liquids contributed to feeling like crap. I ate a bananinha around mile 5. Bananinhas are a sweet Brasilian treat- I would describe it as a dried overripe banana coated in sugar- it has the consistency of solid GU, or a thick paste. They are natural and have a lot of carbs- perfect for running fuel.
For Sunday I ran 10 miles indoors because I refuse to run/see no value running in extra crappy conditions if it is not for a race. Sunday was cold and rainy- full of nope for me. I dont need to "practice" running in shit weather- been there done that plenty of times in races. Plus, I dont want to get used to running in cold weather in case race day is on the warm side. Always a possibility this time of year.  The run itself was uneventful and I felt good.
Looking forward:

One last long run on deck for week 11 and one last significant speed sesh before taper. I plan to figure out my race day outfit so I can wear the bottoms for my last long run to ensure they wont take chunks out of my legs- either my nike shorts or my Lulu skirt.  I already know I'll wear one of my MRC shirts. I also need to nail down my fueling for race day and will practice that again this weekend. 


Monday, March 14, 2016

Carmel Marathon Training: Week 9

9 weeks down, 5 to go! Time has been flying through this cycle. Crazy to think i've only got 2 more long runs left before I head into a 2 week taper and then finally the main event. I'm getting excited for Carmel little by little. With each successful workout, confidence in my abilities and training grows which is making me happier about running this race. Winter makes it really challenging for me to train- especially for the long runs since I can't handle the cold at all- but thankfully this week went according to plan and the weather was agreeable.

Highlights of the week:
  • My second outdoor speed sesh this year, 6x800's + 5x1:00. I did it after work and wore shorts and a Tshirt and felt hot. I went into this workout with a lot of anxiety because I like running on the treadmill- a much more controlled environment for intervals (as opposed to dodging people, wind, and uneven sidewalks outside especially at night). But I nailed my paces and surpassed my expectations for that workout. 
  • Wearing my new shoes!
  • Saturday's long run was another high point of the week- more on that below.
  • Feeling really sleepy the first half of the week- seemed to be a common theme with folks at work too. Chalk that one up to the batshit weather we've had this week. High of 70 on Tuesday and back into the 30's by Thursday.
  • Dealing with a weird pain in my calf for a few days. Nothing to sideline me, but certainly something to keep an eye on. Brought my TP ball and stick to work and gave it some TLC. Currently it's barely noticeable.
  • Wearing new shoes for workouts and feeling the beginnings of potential hotspots. I'm hoping it was just the adjustment for wearing fresh out of the box shoes- but could also have been the new socks (different brand than my usual) I wore too. Too many variables!

Monday: 20 mile cycle

Tuesday: 8 mile run- 6x800's w/ 5x 1:00 Splits: 3:28,3:30, 3:21, 3:22, 3:31, 3:19.  Easy to see which 800's were into the wind! 6:4x pace for the 1:00 intervals at the end. 

Wednesday: 14 mile cycle, 2 mile run (brick)

Thursday: 14 mile cycle

Friday: 8 mile run- progressive

Saturday: 17 mile long run w/ 8.5 @ GMP, 10 mile cycle

Sunday: 12 mile cycle, 5 mile recovery run

10:22:49 for 107 miles total

5:31:32 for 40 miles running

4:51:17 for 67 miles cycled

Highest volume week yet and I'm feeling really good.

At the end of Tuesday's speed sesh, I took a photo to document the occasion once I was on my cool down headed back home. I rarely do speedwork outside, especially at night so this was a big deal for me. The skyline was shining bright. It was a fantastic night to enjoy outside.
I took the Churro Dog for a nice walk on Wednesday. It was not as warm as Tuesday, but we had a nice time sniffing poles and looking for critters.
Saturday was my planned 16 miler. I wanted to incorporate at least 4 miles at GMP near the end  because i'm a big fan of finish fast long runs. The first half of the run I felt heavy and sluggish (the point of running a hard 8 the day before, yay cumulative fatigue yay) and wondered if I would be able to throw down any miles at GMP. Once I got to mile 8 I took off and started pushing a GMP of 7:5x-low 8:00's. The first one wasn't super pleasant, but the second mile (#9) and half of the 3rd GMP mile (#10) I was starting to feel springy. I saw one of my MRC friends running the Get Lucky half and we ran together and chatted for a few min (mile 10) and then I continued on hitting miles at GMP. I kept deciding to extend the GMP mile after mile because I did feel so good. I considered extending the run to 18 miles, but my feet wanted out of that discussion due to the hotspots.
I stopped at Northerly Island at the last mile of the run for a minute to stretch my calf and to take a few pics before trotting home (the reflection on the calm water was so pretty). It was a solid run and I was very happy. 
Ate a Belvita biscuit 2:30 before the run.
Drank 24oz of Osmo during.
Took a GU at mile 8.
Dressed to be overly warm on purpose.
Felt a bit dehydrated once I got home.
Sunday I stayed inside pretty much all day due to the crappy weather. Wind, rain, and cold. No thanks!

Looking forward:

  • Continue to eat nutritious food but more importantly eat appropriate portions so the last 4-7lbs get lost.
  • Continue to refrain from alcohol- this past week I had 1 whisky neat on Saturday evening, that was it for alcohol.
  • Experiment with sock/shoe combos to eliminate any more issues.
  • Stick to my workout schedule when L returns home. 
  • Experiment with pre long run fueling. (Eat more things)
  • More arms/legs/core work post workouts. 
  • Swim, maybe.


Monday, March 7, 2016

Carmel Marathon Training: Week 8

8 down, 6 weeks to go. Yikes. That leaves only 4-5 more long runs until taper. Yikes. This week was plagued by feeling sick in the later part of the week and getting my severance package details at work- at least I have 4+ months before being laid off. Yay. The weather was shitty again and i'm just full of complaints about things that are not a big deal so i'll stop there.


Monday: 11 mile cycle

Tuesday: REST

Wednesday: 8 mile run, 10x 400's

Thursday: 10 mile cycle, 2 mile run

Friday: REST

Saturday: 6 mile run, 3.18 mile run (MRC)

Sunday: 4.82 mile run


Running: 24 miles for 3:15

Cycling: 21 miles for 1:34


We had our #14th Mikkeller Run Club run this past Saturday. It was fun as always. Post run, many of us tried to get Dark Lord Day tickets, as far as I know we had a 100% success rate within the club for those who tried to buy tickets. It will be so fun to go to this event again and be with a great group of people.

Join us for our next run: Details {HERE}
I'm in a pissy mood this week and just dont feel all that good about the marathon. I would love to PR- that's what I've been training for, but also realize that what I am doing might not be enough. I was looking at old training logs and the paces I was running were much faster than what I'm currently doing. BUT... I did look at the projected performance for me in Sporttracks and it has me peaking at the right time. (The huge dip is the actual marathon). And, the performance metric of "380" is substantially higher than all my other marathons (Fox Valley was 240 and Knoxville was 220). I wonder how Carmel will go if it has good weather. At the end of the day I just want to have fun and run a good race, with the time being a secondary factor. #nopressure
The weather was crappy again this week. Mid week snow and the weekend in the low 30's with wind were full of nope for me. I just cannot run outside when it's like that.
Spending the weekend with L and CB was nice. We had a lot of fun at MRC and also cooked together at home and went out a few times. My life is really good despite all the complaints about my marathon training (only a very small facet of life, and majority of what I post here). I want things to come together and go well so badly that I get a little too caught up in it at times.
Looking forward:

  • Continue to eat better, drink less alcohol and lose 5-8lbs.
  • Focus on the training and do the work.
  • Quit over analyzing the training.
  • Work on nutrition consumption during training- should be easier now that I'll have proper noms arriving today- Cliff food pouch things, and some GU.
  • Go to the pool.