Spring Half Marathon Training 2018 - Week 1

This week I started over. I rebooted. I refreshed. I stopped one training plan and started another one. I began what will probably be a long process of shifting my mindset. And I admitted I needed helped doing it - so I got a coach (details forthcoming). 

The view you get when you use the Reflecting Pool as your track
Monday 1/29 - Gym / 11 trainer miles

Tuesday 1/30 - 
7.3 mile interval run @ 8:59
  • 4x5 min intervals @ 7:50 goal pace 
  • Actual 7:49, 7:39, 7:40, 7:40
Wednesday 1/31 - 2000yd swim / 6 mile easy run @ 9:35

Thursday 2/1 - 
7.5 mile interval run @ 8:59
  • 4x4:30 intervals @ 7:15 goal pace 
  • Actual 7:02, 7:12, 7:11, 7:03)
I was really intimidated by this workout. The workouts Coach Katie has been giving me have a lot of warmup, recovery, and cool down time, so it helps to be able to tell myself I only have like 20 minutes of actual hard work, but thinking about those 20 minutes is still scary. Katie's instructions said to see if I could hit 7:15 and I actually texted her to be like, “You mean for like...a second, right?!” She told to just do my best and that she didn't expect me to be be able to do it immediately but that she thought I might end up surprising myself - and she was right! I was shocked that I was able to pull off these paces, and so proud of myself when I was done. It was hard but not even closet to as impossible as I thought it was going to be. This was one of the best runs I have had in a long time and so confidence-boosting!

Friday 2/2 - Rest

Saturday 2/3 - 9 mile long run @ 10:05
Alyssa was in town this weekend so we did our long run together! It was really nice to get together for a low-pressure run, especially since we had both just decided the weekend prior to switch to the half at the New Jersey Marathon.

Sunday 2/4 - 
2 mile easy run @ 8:35

This week...
I was a little surprised (and maybe not in a good way at first) that my new half marathon training looked a lot, mileage-wise, like my old marathon training plan. Katie helped talk me off the cliff (the first time of many to come, I'm sure) and explained to me that I can already handle the mileage - as evidenced by the fact that I just finished an Iroman 3.5 months ago - and that now I need to add another form of stress (i.e. speed) to get my body to where I want it to go. I would be lying if I said I weren't a little skeptical, but I trust her expertise and judgment and, most of all, I'm enjoying that if I have any doubts or issues at all, she's only a text away.

This was the first time in a while that I took my speedwork outside instead of on the treadmill, and I'm so glad I did. When I was training for the Shamrock Marathon last year I did all my speedwork on the treadmill - I had only ever used it a handful of times prior to that, but I found it extremely useful for speed workouts, especially since it's so hard to do them in the city. It helped me learn what faster paces felt like and I was really successful with it so, naturally, I figured I would use it again this year. For some reason, it just hasn't been working the same way this year, and those faster paces - paces that aren't by any means easy for me but that I have absolutely been able to run on my own outside - have felt awkward and uncomfortable this time around. My heart rate seems to skyrocket as soon as I start running fast and I just haven't been able to hang on. It's been really discouraging and, in fact, I came in to my speedwork this week with 2 consecutive weeks worth of failed treadmill workout attempts. I really had to work this week and my heart rate was high during those fast intervals, obviously, but I still felt in control. 

I know I already said this, but I am so proud of myself for my Thursday speed workout! I know it was only for 2/3 of a mile at a time, but I ran low 7 paces! That is insane to me. Katie pointed out that I've run a 5k at almost that pace, but I have no idea how that happened so, like I said, INSANE.

I felt really good about this week, but I usually feel that way at the beginning of any new training cycle, so time will tell if it lasts. I will be honest that the weekday stuff was tough to get through and I felt completely exhausted by Wednesday, but it felt good to push through that, nail my run on Thursday, and go into the weekend feeling like the hardest parts were behind me. 

1 comment

  1. I was going to ask how you do your speedwork - if it's on the treadmill or outside. I've done speedwork on the treadmill before, but I find it so challenging to know just how hard I should be pushing myself - though I suppose getting paces from a coach, rather than blanket directions ("hard") from a one-size-fits-all training plan, would help in that department.