Shamrock Marathon Training: Week 8

I'm halfway through training for the Shamrock Marathon in Virginia Beach in March! I've gotten into nice groove with marathon training - not that it's always easy to get myself out the door, but like Alyssa put it more eloquently than I could, after so many months of intense Ironman training, marathon training really is like coming back to an old friend. This will be my 5th marathon but, somehow this is actually my 7th marathon training cycle (I trained for about 10 weeks for the Richmond Marathon in 2014 before deciding that the summer training required for a fall marathon just wasn't for me, and through 13 weeks of training for the Big Sur Marathon last year before injuring my foot about a month before the race and having to drop out)! I'm in shock that that can really be true, and a little emotional since it will have been 3 years since my first marathon later this week!

I didn't originally think I would want to do weekly recaps of my training, but I realized that I do want to document this training and that I've always recapped my training in the same structured way for a reason: because it works for me. I have two weeks to catch up on this week but next week I should be back on track. Here's how things have gone since my last update two weeks ago:

Week 8 

Monday 1/2
5.03 mile run @ 8:56 / 30 minutes strength training
When we last left off, I'd had to end my planned 17-mile long run after less than 2.5 miles because of some really bad shin pain. Since my injury last year I'm really cautious about making anything that might be wrong worse, especially with such a big year planned for this year! I did a lot of rolling and icing and compressing and did an easy test run on my day off on Monday, and it felt more or less back to normal. A few twinges after a few miles, but nothing that felt too serious. 

I also made good use of my day off by hitting the gym just because I could! I mentioned in my training plan post that I was thinking about starting the New Rules of Lifting for Women program again, so this week was my first week of that. 

Tuesday 1/3
45 minute spin
I did a Kanye Peloton class on the trainer after work, which was really fun! Some of the themed classes are better than others and this was definitely one of the better ones. 

Wednesday 1/4
6.5 mile treadmill run @ 8:55
Wednesday was a treadmill workout, which I had planned to do on Thursday but switched for...reasons I can't remember now. I did the "ice cream sandwich" workout (1 mile warmup, 2 miles at 15 seconds slower than half marathon pace, 6x30 second hill sprints, 2 miles at 15 seconds slower than half marathon pace, ~1 mile cooldown) that Gretchen talked about, and it was a good one. I chose to do the 2 tempo miles at an 8:34 pace, since that's about 15 seconds per mile slower than my best half marathon. I did the hill sprints at 8:57 at a 5% incline, and that felt hard but manageable. The last time I did a hill workout on the treadmill my heart rate skyrocketed and I wasn't able to complete the whole thing, so I didn't want to go too crazy with the incline. Getting through two sets of 2 miles at that pace was tough (especially the two after the hill sprints - according to this chart, the pace and incline I did them at is equivalent to a 7:35 pace) but I was glad I pushed through. I'm not sure how long my cooldown actually was, but I know I was originally planning to do 7 miles total, but I felt like I was getting stared at by other gym-goers so I gave up my treadmill a little early. I thought that since I use our apartment gym I had escaped the January influx, but I guess not. It's still nowhere near close to as crowded as a normal gym, but considering there is usually other person there, max, it's more crowded than usual.

Thursday 1/5
4 mile run @ 9:05
This run was awful. Alyssa and I made a plan to run "together" after work and I'm glad hers went well because mine sucked. I had the worst stomach cramps the whole time and it was really painful. 

I went to the gym afterward for the next workout on my New Rules plan, and I felt a lot better. I don't know what was up with that run but it just wasn't my day.

Friday 1/6
Rest Day

Saturday 1/7
60 minutes yoga
This weekend I skipped a long ride - I've been putting them on my schedule to keep me in shape to begin half Ironman training, but I've been hit or miss about actually doing them. Instead I decided to do an hour of yoga to prepare for my long run on Sunday in hopes that it would go better than it did last week.

Sunday 1/8
15.5 mile run @ 8:58
...and it did! We didn't get hit with a ton of snow, but it was still a little icy and snowy in some places but not bad at all. This was a brutally cold run - the wind chill when I started was 5 degrees! I was bundled up so the temperature really wasn't that bad, except when the wind blew. And when the wind blew, it blew hard. My run included the 3-mile loop around Hains Point, which was fine on the way out but SO windy on the way back that it was physically painful. My chin was numb for the last hour and a half of this run, at least. But I definitely wasn't the only crazy out there, and I actually think the conditions made it a little easier to push through and focus on something other than the running.  

1 comment

  1. how rude of the other gym goers! our gym has been insanely busy, so i've been sticking to ellipticals and treadmills - they have like 40 so there's always one or two free (seriously, normally there is like 20 free) but everything else is so packed i can't even squeeze in to do a squat. they're just jealous you're so awesome! the "ice cream sandwich" workout sounds interesting, except for the hill part haha. i'm not a fan of hills on the treadmill, but maybe i'll give it a go. can't believe this is your 5th marathon and 3 year anniversary of your first!