I would like to say the above title is an analogy to how my fitness is improving but I don't want to jinx myself. (even though I feel myself shaping up nicely...) No, there really is a good ol' fashion snow storm in the works and it is smacking us as I type. The weather "experts" are calling for 8-10" of the white stuff to nail Duluth! Bring it!! I really don't want snow as it really mucks up a persons marathon training. I will press on and become creative with my training for a week or so. After all, I do have the dreadmill to fall back on for more specific training days and possibly next weekends long run. YUK! Let's not be ahead of ourselves quite yet. There may be perfect outdoor running by next weekend.
As for the last two weeks I start with the week following my half-marathon "pace run". For those of you who can't understand why someone would pay for a race and use it for a training run needs to give it a try. Really, its a lot harder than you think. Mentally, that is. Physically, one usually is ready to crank out some fast miles until reality sets in and you realize you are not quite as fit as you thought you were. Early season races are perfect for the faster training runs. The courses are closed to traffic, you have others around to help distract from the grind of the miles, and you have suffice aide. In addition, it really allows you to dial in the pace you desire for future races and get a feeling for where you are at in your training cycle. For me, I needed to understand if running 6:00 per mile will be a reality come April 15th. With the half I did, I feel like, all injuries kept away, that it is a serious reality. I like that, because if I do, it will be a personal best (PR)!
After the half-marathon my goal was to have un-interupted training, another reason not to race. I managed that with a few easy trail runs Sunday thru Tuesday. I was surprised how tired my quads were, but by Wednesday I was ready and did a 5X1000 meter workout and nailed it. The weather that week kept me to a few days in the gym, but I did manage to get out and run a couple days with windchills near the -20F mark. I finished the week with a nice mix of trails and roads for 16 miles.
This last week I managed to catch some sort of GI virus that took me out for a day. Feeling a bit of nausea is never good when needing to run, so I took a day off. It was a quick buggar, thankfully, and I was good to go the remainder of the week. My highlight for the week was the 7 miler at 5:56 pace. I felt like that was a strong run for me and I'm really headed in the right direction. Today's long run was another solid effort, one in which I did solo and that always is good on the psyche.
We, (I) have 9 weeks to go and I feel like I am in a good place. I'm still not doing a lot of volume but I am running good, quality runs. My recovery are truely run at a slow pace and that has been setting me up for good quality, faster days of training. I have two more weeks of speed, then switch gears to strength oriented work. I love that shit!!
Here's to a marvelous week of training people. Keep it up!
Jan 28th-Feb 3rd
M:41:00 5 miles (woodland, anoka, hartley)
T: 45:00 5 miles (trails, feel better)
W: 1:09:00 10 miles 5X1000 meters @ 5:18 pace
Th: 1:09:00 9 miles (skyline, -20F)
F: 1 mi + weights at gym. *tired so no running
Sa: 1:15:00 8.6 miles (sno mo trails)
Su: 2:04:00 16 miles (trails/roads)
~55 miles for week
M: 1:05:00 7 miles (-13F hartley run)
T: 0 miles GI virus
W: 55:00 9 miles -4X1200 meters @ 5:18 pace
Th: 1:05:00 6 miles snowshoe run. *maybe too much for recovery day?
Fr: 1:14:00 11 miles w/ 7 mi @ 5:56 pace
Sa: 1:15:00 9.5 miles recovery day (roads/trails)
Su: 2:04:42 18.3 miles *ave 6:49 pace
~61 miles for week
YEARS TOTAL: 337.1 miles