BibRave, Product Review, Run!, Slacker

Building the Bones

Disclaimer: I received coaching from Endure Strong as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews.

Lord knows, I could use some guidance. Left to my own devices I might just sleep all day and eat pizza. Which is counter productive to that lovely goal of breaking 2:00 in the half. That one I set ummmm, 5 years ago? However I’ve done nothing but get slower in the last 4 years.

Boo. Training plans and I don’t often get along. I’ve looked into online coaching but could never seem to take the plunge. So when the opportunity arose with Endure Strong through BibRave, I was more than a little intrigued. Throw in actual conversation with Jared Ward and I was in.

It all started with an email from Andrew- the main guy with Endure Strong– in which I was welcomed to the team and asked to create a Final Surge profile. Final Surge is the platform that Endure Strong uses to pick training plans, schedule runs, have group chats and reach out to the coaches.

Plans were organized by race distance, weekly miles and skill level. Being that I knew I was out of shape and carrying an extra 40 pounds (more on that sometime) I chose a beginner 16 week plan with a peak of 25 miles per week. Doesn’t sound like much but it was more than I was running. Plus the idea of 6 days a week kind of scared me. So much so that I kind of freaked out and emailed Andrew in a panic. I had just transferred into my position and had no idea how that transition was going to go.

A week in May where I moved a run.

The way my plan laid out, the days didn’t work me. It started with Mondays as a rest day and then 6 days of running- I needed it shifted up a day. Yes, Final Surge has a drag and drop capability but that would be tedious moving every single workout for 16 weeks. Andrew was able to make that happen and I calmed down a little. Whew.

Then it came time to run. It broke down with 3 easy, short runs, 2 speed work outs and a long run. Simple enough, right?

Morning wake up text

I was putting in the miles- mostly- and hitting the paces- mostly. Denial is a wonderful place. I was attending the bi-weekly training calls with Jared and the team and I was getting those green boxes in Final Surge.

Then the rosy glow faded a bit and I slammed into a wall of reality. Your workouts are set to specific zones. The zones are set in the account setup according to your goal race.. I picked a race time of 2:12 for Oaktown Half. See a problem?

That’s 20 minutes faster than my recent times. Over reaching much? I was paying for it- I was exhausted, hurting and flaming out in most runs. The good thing is you can adjust your zones. So I went in and reigned it in. Notice I am saying I.

Here’s where I was feeling dissatisfied. Yes, I reached out on the social wall and would get feed back from the other members and the coach but I was feeling a lack of direct feedback. I feel like a little more one on one would have been beneficial. The opening intro is all self driven- some interactions with someone smarter than me might have seen that I was over reaching. An occasional email or direct message from the coach checking in would have been appreciated.

I learned a few things while training with Endure Strong. I need some one on one time with coaching and it can’t all be me reaching out. To some extent I need a drill sergeant. I need someone to keep me accountable otherwise I either push to hard or not enough. I didn’t necessarily feel that here.

Apparently I took all my screenshots in May??

Now- I fully admit that is partly on me. I could have reached out directly more often. While the interaction of the social wall was great, I knew I needed more and I could have tried harder. It just felt a little one sided.

Time in zones for the last 30 days

However, I did like the plan itself. Except for the 6 day part- my body and my brain can’t handle 6 days a week. At least not now. #goals The amount of easy running and structured running was a good mix- I am not great at that by myself. If you are looking for a little direction and a great plan, under $40 a month is a steal. There are also the biweekly calls with Jared and you can send your questions in advance or ask them while the call is taking place.

Final Surge has a few quirks but that’s on the Final Surge end. I loved the morning texts and emails with my run for the day- I never had to memorize anything too far ahead.

Endure Strong is a great option for those with a little more self motivation then myself. However I am glad that I had the opportunity to learn this about myself. I also believe that I finally built a decent base- not the goal of my plan but still a good thing. If the bones are good, I can continue to build on that. My race is still 9 days away so I have another few weeks of the training plan to go- wish me luck!

How do you choose a coach or plan?

*Want to more than just my thoughts?-

Fit Newton Blog The Marathon Lady My Feet In Motion

I Run For Many Reasons She Runs by the Seashore

Run!, Stomach, Training

Week 24- Nerve

This week was good but odd in some ways.

  • 2019 Race Schedule (so far):
  • 8/11 Oaktown Half (Thanks BibRave)
  • 7/20 Vintners 5 Mile or Rock to Pier 10K
  • 10/ 6 RnR San Jose (more to come)

We started it with a red flag heat wave then swung back the other way. I had some good runs, I missed one and one definitely pushed the definition of the word “run”.

I had a slap in the face about the level of my emotional eating and tendency to eat more than I should in one sitting. But that’s for another blog post. That I’ve started and stopped a few times already.

My sciatica pain came back. Either due to my new (to me) desk chair or because I spent an hour on the treadmill this week. Could be either, could be both. Not gonna lie, wish I could go get my chair from my previous office.

Oh and I rearranged all the furniture in my bedroom over the weekend because why not?

Plan vs Reality

Monday 1.5 miles/ .8 ish miles
I am pushing it by calling this a run. I was in jeans and boots but I was moving pretty fast. It hit 105 in hometown that day and 95 in SLO. While the home town temp isn’t abnormal- that SLO temp is. I had to do an errand for work and I was moving pretty quickly. I admit when I learned there was a fire in the riverbed at home town and they were shutting down the main bridge in town, I turned on my watch while doing this errand.

Tuesday 1 mile up/down, 2x 1 mile repeats/ 4 miles -1 up/down, 2 x1 mile repeats
It was 103 in home town so I used my brain and headed to the gym. I hate the treadmill. The warm mile wasn’t bad, I didn’t nail the mile repeat paces but I was damn close. I find running on the treadmill so much harder then outside. And by mile 4, I could tell that my lower back was not happy.

Wednesday 1.5 miles/ 1.5 miles
Nothing much to say just went out and did it.

Thursday- 3.5 mile fartlek run/ 3.5 mile fartlek run
My stomach was a total asshat and I was tired and did not want to run. I was trying to rationalize skipping the run but I changed and headed out anyways. I normally love fartlek runs but this was more about getting it done. It wasn’t horrible but I was glad I pulled it together.

Friday- 1.5 miles/ Spiral
I skipped this run. My lower back was hurting pretty badly but I wonder if I just used that as an excuse. It also wasn’t a great food night and reality may have hit me.

Saturday- 8 miles/ 8.5 miles
Once again I hit the snooze button a few too many times. So another mid afternoon run was on the books. I almost pushed the run to Sunday but told myself to stop being stupid. I headed out around 3:30 and it was only in the 80’s. I started off with a half mile warmup then got to business trying to get the next 8 miles in the long run zone assigned. So close! Miles 4-6 were too slow. I ran a section of road that while shaded the headwind died. The temperature increased like wow. My stomach also cramped spectacularly in mile 5. I slammed to a halt and wondered if I could even make it to my car. There were park bathrooms .5 mile in the opposite way so I was torn which way to go. I stood on the side of the road for a while. But someone was conspiring against me- they tore down the park bathrooms!! Why?!?!?! Somehow my miles back to the car were my fastest. With moments when I had to stop and take deep breathes. In and out, in and out. It was also my first run trying a new fuel but I am not sure which way to make that correlation. Hmmm.

Sunday- Rest/ Rest
Nailed it! I actually thought about heading out to make up the missed 1.5 mile run but sleep and a migraine kept it a rest day. So I caught up on my DVR and cleaned my closet.

18.8 miles for the week. So close to where I was supposed to be!

How was your week?

Run!, Slacker, Training

Week 21- Thunder

In more ways than one.

  • 2019 Race Schedule (so far):
  • 6/2 RnR San Diego (Thanks BibRave)
  • 8/11 Oaktown Half (Thanks BibRave)
  • 7/20 Vintners 5 Mile
  • 10/ 6 RnR San Jose (more to come)

The weather stayed gray, cold and rainy the majority of the week. Definitely not the typical May weather. A migraine came to party on Wednesday night and didn’t really let up until Saturday. That’s not abnormal though so I just had to grin and bear it the best I could. I may have relied on a little too much caffeine. And sugar. Oops. I keep promising I will make better eating choices but then I don’t. But that’s another blog for another day.

Planned vs Reality

Monday- 1.5 miles/ 1.5 miles
Easy mile-ish on Monday. Nothing really to say other than I just went out and did it. I did run a different portion of streets though. I may end up with out and backs just because 1.5 miles in hard to plan.

Tuesday- 2 miles up/down, 4×800 at 5K pace/ Nada
Oops. I was not feeling a run. More than just feeling lazy or tired, I was not into the run at all. I’ve learned that when I feel like that- skip the run. The times I haven’t in the past I’ve either hurt myself, lost something or broke my phone. So instead I met my mother for some pizza.

Wednesday- 1.5 miles/ 2 miles up/down, 4×800 at 5K pace
I almost put off this run again. I realized it wasn’t programmed into my watch, it was starting to rain, yada yada yada. I finally told myself 1 mile in to just shut up and run. So I did. My 400’s came in at 9:07, 9:41, 8:57, 9:31. My range was 9:12-9:31 so I wasn’t horribly off. First let me say 800’s are long. I also was stupid and way underestimated the section of path I was going to run these on so they were run with traffic on the roads. Not the best idea. Still it was a decent run and I felt better for having done it.

Thursday- 3.5 miles w/ strides/ 3.5 miles w/ strides
2 workouts back to back are not a good idea but I knew these miles were 98% easy. That said it was a little rough in the beginning but it got better as I ran on. I almost forgot the strides until the last mile and a half. Oops but I still managed to throw them in.

Friday- 1.5 miles/ 1.5 miles
I went in very early to work and stayed until almost close. I should have been tired but I was overly caffeinated and overly sugared up. I changed and headed back towards home town. I forgot it was cruise night. Traffic and cars were stupid busy and I had chosen the wrong side of town to run. I had to circle for a parking spot and almost said screw it when I managed to find a spot to parallel in. Then I tried to bust out the mile and a half as safely as I could.

It was freakin’ cold but I overheated 🤷‍♀️

Saturday- 6 miles/ 7 miles- 1 up/down 6 at pace
I had a miserable Friday night between the migraine and my damn GI disorder, I was so tired on Saturday I almost pushed the run to Sunday. I eventually made it out the door but kissed my long run pace goodbye figuring I was going to riding the struggle bus. Except I didn’t. Even with 25mph winds pushing me back half the time. Once I got into it I felt surprisingly well and just kept trucking on. I did have to stop multiple times to reapply BodyGlide as my thunder thighs were taking exception to non compression shorts. Haha. All the chafe! I didn’t look at my watch or my paces until later in the evening so I was surprised to see I hit my long run pace or under for all 6 miles. Who knew??

Sunday- Rest day/ Rest day
I love Sunday’s.

17.6 miles for the week, only .5 miles short of where I should have been. That warm up/ cool down on my long run helped me add back some of the mileage I missed. And with that we are into race week for San Diego. Yikes!

How was your week?

Run!, Slacker, Training

Week 18-Embrace the Change

First full week with Endure Strong Coaching and first full week at the new job. I got this!

Maybe.

I think I can, I think I can. Maybe, this week took a lot out of me. Well, and the previous week. I need to get better about how/ when I eat now. I also drank way less than normal and that is not good. I ate so much crap but at the same time not enough. I lost 3 pounds but can’t claim that it was out self control and healthy choices.

  • 2019 Race Schedule (so far):
  • 6/2 RnR San Diego (Thanks BibRave)
  • 8-11 Oaktown Half (Thanks BibRave)

Planned vs Actual

Monday- 1.5 easy miles/ 1.53 miles
Short, easy miles. I can do this!!! Except I will say that figuring out a 1.5 mile route is harder than it sounds.

Tuesday-2.5 miles hills/ Nada
I was having lingering wardrobe malfunction issues from Sunday’s race and any movement hurt. I had mostly ignored it the day before but I just couldn’t.

Wednesday- 1.5 easy miles/ 2.64 miles hills
I chose to do the missed workout instead of the easy run. I still wasn’t comfortable exactly but the hills felt decent. Until I checked my elevation gain at the end and realized it kind of sucked. But I ran that hill multiple times!

Thursday- 3 miles with strides/ 3.1 miles with strides
Strides are fun! The rest was easy miles and they felt ok. The mileage doesn’t worry me with this plan- the back to back running does which is why I chose a beginner plan, ha!

Friday- 1.5 miles easy/ 1.72 miles easy
Wait, what? Running on a Friday? After work? I don’t think I can…I did! And again planning a 1.5 mile route was the hardest part. Oh and this “easy” run had more elevation gain than my hill workout a few days back. Ha!

Saturday- 5 mile long run/ 5 mile slog
The long run wasn’t long so when I woke up to a spinning room courtesy of my head and not an earthquake this time. I went back to sleep and figured I could just run later. Which I did but it was freakin’ miserable. I was hot, overheated, dehydrated and just couldn’t. I should have turned around 2 miles in and taken the short cut but I pushed on. I wouldn’t call it running, it was mostly walking and then stopping to try to prevent more damage to an already popped blister. Plus, the shoes I wore on Wed- Friday had pissed off my left ankle.

Sunday- Rest day/ REST day
I did nothing. I tried to nap but couldn’t, boo.

14 ish miles for the week. And I only missed 1 workout! Who am I????

How was your week??