I did something last week I haven’t done since my first few half marathons.
I took the week off.
Well mostly, I jogged a short 2.5 mile run, did 5 Morning Meltdown workouts and took the puppy on a walk.
So not completely lazy.
I planned on running more but then I started to think about it. I used to take time after a race, then as I started running more and spending time on social, I started taking less time off post race. Even of after my first and second marathons, I was running by day 2 or 3. Why?
And I’ve been in a constant cycle ever since. So last week, I said Nah.
Don’t get me wrong- I still have 3 half marathons in October and I realize that I need to train for them. But one week wasn’t going to hurt me. Well, at least I hope so. If not, I’ll let you know in a few months.
So I was completely lazy but I did manage to catch up on some things on my DVR. Is it weird that I felt like it was cluttered?
Race week arrived and I don’t think I’ve had a bigger case of the whatever’s.
I worked hard for 13 weeks and then the last 2 was eh. Life, right?
Things were a little crazy last week as I canceled my hotel room on Monday and then rebooking another on Thursday. Work had it’s moments and asthma and I aren’t getting along. But I had a great race weekend to look forward to and I was bringing multiple people with me this time. More fun, right?
Except, I need to stay out of stores that sell purses. Full Stop, seriously.
Running wise though, my runs went surprisingly well.
Plan vs Reality
Monday- Up/down 1.5 miles, 2x 1 mile at goal pace/ 3.5 miles I set out to do the workout but wasn’t feeling it. Instead I ran- ok mostly walked- a warmup and then ran 2.5 of the steadiest miles I’ve run in a long time. I’m counting it as a win.
Tuesday- 1.5 miles/ MM 100 7 I had post work plans and just decided to not even try to run. I did however squeeze in a MM 100 workout. While I love the workouts, I decided after this to put them on hold until after the race- my hamstrings were so tight.
Wednesday- 1.5 miles/ 1.3 miles Ever have that vain moment where you think -“I’ve done a week of MM100 workouts, those cute shorts should work for running now”? Haha, nope. 1.3 was all my thunder thighs could handle.
Thursday- 3 miles w/strides/ 3 miles w/ strides I did exactly what the plan said! Yay!
Friday- 1.5 miles/ Rest Nothing but work and heading home to pack for Oakland.
Saturday- Road trip! We all packed up and away we went. We did a little shopping, some pizza eating before checking into the hotel. Then it was more shopping and more eating before trying to get some sleep before the race.
Disclaimer: I received an entry into Oaktown Half 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.
Part of me wants to say it snuck up on me and the other part feels like I’ve been preparing forever.
This week has been all over the place. My plans changed pre race and I canceled my hotel. Then they changed again and I was booking a hotel on Thursday evening again. My bib was supposed to arrive this week but there was a shipping snafu. Now I am picking it up on race morning.
I’m just rolling with the punches here. Maybe. Maybe I’m just wobbly.
I am looking forward to running around Oakland again. Now, I know to be prepared for all the street art. I may keep my phone out the whole time. I’m also not sick this time so yay! (knock on wood) This is also a different course so I am looking forward to checking out the differences.
That said, I am unsure if I have a goal. I originally was aiming for a 2:12 with my training plan until I realized I was over reaching. A lot. I am not sure what to aim for now or if I even want to have a goal. I also don’t know what shoes to wear. Well, no- I do. It would be insanity to run in my new Ghost’s. They only have 5 miles on them.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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!
If I could stop injuring myself, that would be great.
Also could the ants stop invading my bathroom? I know they are just looking for water in the heat wave but there cannot be ants on the toilet seat!!
Last week was a little off. I started the week with a possible concussion and just rolled on from there. This is not the first time I’ve had a concussion, nor is it the first time I’ve given one to myself. Oops.
So that was fun.
Monday- 1.5 miles/ Rest Once I finally figured out what was wrong with me, I knew there was no way I was running that day. I just went home and tried to chill in a dark room.
Tuesday- 3 mile tempo, 1.5 up/down/ 1.5 miles I was still feeling off- less dizzy, mostly head pain. I took my run super slow and easy. Which might have happened anyways as it was almost 100*.
Wednesday- 1.5 miles/ 2x 1 mile repeats, 1 mile up/down I decided to attempt what I thought was the easier of my speed work and as it was 105* out, I headed to the gym. Yeah no. Lingering head pain made me super wobbly on the treadmill. My Garmin tracking was way off again too. Then I had a coughing fit and was getting the stink eye from other gym goers so I bailed. 2.25 miles done
Thursday- 3 mile tempo, 1 up/down / 2 mile tempo, 1 up/down I didn’t feel like the previous day had been an actual workout so I decided to attempt my other speedwork. It was 95* but there was a decent breeze so it felt ok. I actually probably would have finished the whole workout but I had worn the wrong shorts and the thigh chafing was extreme.
Friday- 1.5 miles/ Rest Friday snowballed and by the time I left work I was not feeling it. Plus it was the last Friday of the fair and I didn’t want to deal with any potential idiots on the roads.
Saturday- 1.5 miles/ Rest I had to work on Saturday so I had already planned on pushing my long run to Sunday. Which, considering it was 106* seemed better anyways. I meant to get out in the evening for the missed 1.5 mile run but didn’t.
Sunday- 10 miles/ 9.3 miles I set an alarm but still snoozed for 2 hours, I was out the door a little after 8. It was still too hot. I don’t know if I was still feeling the affects of the giant bruise on my noggin or what but somehow this run turned into a walk and then a shuffle. I was not feeling it at all. I kept moving forward but it was like I had no ability or desire to move any faster. It was one of those old type runs where I was running to a certain place and then my mom was picking me up to go to lunch. I hit the meeting spot at 9.3 and didn’t even care enough to push it to 10.
16.4 miles for the week. 6 miles off target and the workouts were kind of a farce but it was better than it could have been. And my head is feeling better and the heat wave broke, so yay!