Saturday, January 30, 2010

Training: Week 9 report

I just got back from my long run, so I thought I'd do my training report! Here was this week's schedule:
Monday - 50 minute run
Tuesday - 40 minute Wii Fit Plus Yoga (cross-training)
*Wednesday - 50 minute run, plus form drills
Thursday - 60 minute ballet class (cross-training)
Friday - rest
Saturday - 8 mile long run
Sunday - rest

* Wednesday is supposed to be a rest day, with the run being on Thursday and cross-training being on Friday. However, my ballet class is Thursday night, and once my mileage started going up, I just couldn't run AND do ballet class on the same day! LOL So I had to make some adjustments!

The last month or so, I have been struggling with pacing in my training runs. I had naturally started going faster, which was fine back in the fall when I was at a distance plateau. However, I learned early on in running that my body does not tolerate increases in distance AND speed at the same time. If I go too fast while I'm adding mileage, I hurt. It's pretty simple. So my goals for the last 2 weeks have been to train at a nice slow pace. It's not easy, esp. on the couple of days where the weather has been in the 50s! But if I intend to reach the end of this training program without injury, I have to maintain a good pace!

This week, I think I have finally got it under control! I am trying to run between 11:30 and 12:00 miles. That is a pace that keeps me breathing moderately, but that doesn't leave me exhausted or sore. Monday I averaged 11:15, Wednesday 11:40, and today (when it's even MORE crucial to control pacing!) I averaged 11:58!

Today I had a little extra help with my pacing... nasty weather! It was 33 degrees when I left the house, with the windchill at around 24 degrees. I do my long runs at a park with a nature preserve, and there is a 2.2 mile loop around a lake. Here's a picture I took as I was walking back to the head of the trail after completing my 8 miles:

The trail goes around this lake, over the dam you can see way off in the distance, and then goes through the woods, which is a nature preserve. It's really beautiful, and only mildly hilly! But today, at the top of that dam, with the wind whipping around - oh my goodness! It was cold! I was wearing mittens and could still barely feel my fingers, which was tricky when it came time to my refueling during the run! :)

But I did the 8 miles today, and I'm so proud of myself. It was the longest I've ever run! I have 2 more weeks of building up my distance/time, culminating in a 10 mile run. Then I begin a 3 week tapering period to allow for recovery before the race!! It's hard to believe I've finished Week 9 of 14 already!!

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