St. Luke’s Half Marathon Training: Weeks Four and Five

The last two weeks have been extremely busy in my little world. During week four of training I went on a four-day trip to Charleston, South Carolina with my mom and my sister. It was the perfect getaway and exactly what I needed to just relax and see them for a few days. Also, if you’ve never been to Charleston, you MUST visit. It is a gorgeously quaint city, full of history and fantastic shopping. We stayed at the French Quarter Inn and I would stay there again in a heartbeat!

Our last night in Charleston at Husk Restaurant.

Our last night in Charleston at Husk Restaurant.

Needless to say, my little trip derailed my training for a few days. I only missed two runs and thankfully it was a cutback week in mileage anyway so I don’t think I lost any fitness. I would have loved to run in Charleston but I just didn’t have the time and since we were only there for four days, I wanted to spend as much time as possible with my mom and sister.

Georgia and myself at a super cool wine store.

Georgia and myself at a super cool wine store.

When I got back, I got back into training mode but something just kept feeling “off.” I wasn’t feeling great on any of my runs really and my stomach was not cooperating. I need to reassess and maybe change my goals for my upcoming half marathons to be a little more realistic.

However, I did get a little boost of confidence after running the West End St. Patrick’s Day 5K yesterday in Allentown, PA, by setting an 11-second PR (24:48) without even trying. I went into the race wanting to just run it for fun. My only goal was the keep my pace below my half marathon pace, which I did, easily. It was a fun little race that Adam and I ran together. I was super proud of him too for setting a 1:30-minute PR and coming in first place for his age group and fifth overall!

Me and Adam before the 5K!

Me and Adam before the 5K!

Anyway, that’s been my life lately and here’s my training from the last few weeks:

Week Four

Monday, March 10 – Yoga

I wasn’t feeling sore today but just tired. Typically I do IronStrength on Mondays but today my body was telling me to go to yoga instead. It felt great.

Tuesday, March 11 – 7 miles, easy

I had to break up my run today for a few reasons. I was scheduled to run 7 miles (a bit too much for a lunch run) and I wanted to run with the running store after work, but they usually only do 5 miles. Also, it was insanely beautiful outside so I wanted to get out during the day. A bunch of my co-workers at Runner’s World have been working on the Run Emmaus project, in which they run every single street in Emmaus, PA- the town of our HQ. Today they were doing the final mile of the run so I decided to join in. I got my two miles done, got to take part in the project, and will be able to run after work too!

Plan: 2 miles, easy
Actual: 2 miles in 16:58 at 8:29/mile

Shoes: Saucony Mirage 3
Conditions: 57 degrees, sunny

I ran after work with the Run Inn (our local running store). It was so nice to run in the evening when it’s light out. The pace was a little faster than “easy” for me but it felt ok.

Plan: 5 miles, easy (9:18/mile)
Actual: 5 miles in 43:22 at 8:31/mile
Splits:
(1) 8:12 (2) 8:32 (3) 8:44 (4) 8:36 (5) 8:37

Shoes: Saucony Mirage 3
Conditions: 59 degrees, sunny

Wednesday, March 12 – 3.7 miles, easy

I felt really terrible on this run. My stomach was not happy, my nose was incredibly runny, just bad.

Plan: 6 miles, easy
Actual: 3.7 miles 

Thursday, March 13 – 60 minutes, Vinyasa Yoga; 7 miles with 4 miles at HMP

I had to break this up into two runs unfortunately (I know not ideal but oh well) because it’s tough for me to do 7 miles at lunch. I did 5 miles with 4 miles at HMP during lunch and finished with 2 miles after work. I did all of the running on the treadmill because it was unbearably cold and windy outside.

Plan: 7 miles with 4 miles at HMP
Actual: (two runs) 5 miles with 4 miles @ 8:23/mile; 2 miles at 8:49/mile

Friday, March 14 – 6 miles, easy

I went out for an easy lunch run today with two coworkers. It was nice to just chat and keep the pace relatively easy, although we ended up going a bit faster than I had originally planned. I felt good though!

Plan: 6 miles, easy (9:18/mile)
Actual: 6 miles in 52:08 at 8:41/mile

Shoes: Saucony Mirage
Conditions: 30 degrees, overcast but sunny at the end

Saturday, March 15 – Travel to South Carolina [REST]

Sunday, March 16 –

I was supposed to run 6.2 miles according to my training plan but I was on vacation with my mom and sister (who I NEVER get to see) so I skipped! YOLO.

 

Week 5

Monday, March 17 – Still vacationing…

Tuesday, March 18 – Yoga

I flew back from South Carolina on Tuesday and got home later than expected. I was completely drained from the traveling and didn’t want to head out for a late 6-mile run. Instead I opted to do the Runner’s World Power Yoga session and I felt really great after.

Wednesday, March 19 – 5 miles, easy

I didn’t take a watch with me on my lunch run which was good because on easy runs, I really need to learn to disregard my pace and run by feel. I felt pretty good on this run but my legs were noticeably fatigued from all the walking I did with my mom and sister when we went to South Carolina for four days.

Plan: 5 miles, easy
Actual: 5.37 miles

Shoes: Saucony Mirage 3
Conditions: Overcast, drizzly, 36 degrees.

Thursday, March 20 – 6.2 miles, easy

Did a double- 3 miles at lunch, 3.2 miles after work at the Run Inn

Friday, March 21 – 6.3 miles recovery spin + Strength

Saturday, March 22 – 7 miles, LSD

I felt ok on my “long” run this week but the wind during the run was unbearable. Definitely my least favorite weather condition.

Plan: 7 miles, easy (9:12/mile)

Actual: 7 miles in 1:03:00 at 9:00/mile

Sunday, March 23 – 1 mile warmup, West End St.. Patricks Day 5K

I was not trying to race this 5K by any means. My goal was to run under my HMP (8:23/mile) but I felt pretty good. I actually ended up setting an 11-second PR. Nothing crazy but I’ll take it!

 

Weekly Mileage Total: 29 miles

See all training recaps here.

 

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{Monday Motivation} The Finish Line

I’ve been slacking a bit lately on my blogging but it’s because I’ve been very busy! I’ve been training a lot for the St. Luke’s Half Marathon in April as well as busy with work, redecorating my apartment (priorities!), and I went on a four day vacation with my mom and sister down to Charleston, South Carolina. But no worries, I’ll be back to blogging soon hopefully!

With that said, I managed to run a local 5K yesterday and set an 11-second PR- without trying whatsoever. I’m not trying to brag at all but I went into this race thinking, I’m just going to run it for fun. I’ve been training for my upcoming half marathons so I’m not in 5K shape but I really did surprise myself when I crossed the finish line and saw the shiny new  PR on my watch! If anything it gives me extra confidence for the half because honestly, training hasn’t felt so great lately. Happy running this week!

(Source: Pinterest)

(Source: Pinterest)

St. Luke’s Half Marathon Training: Week Three

Hilly Long Run on Sunday

Hilly Long Run on Sunday

Monday, March 3 – IronStrength

– 3×15 jump squats and 3×10 rotary planks (on each arm)
– 3 sets rows from plank (x10), pushups (x10), situps with weights (x10)
– 3 sets plyometric lunges (x10), alternating sides of hamstring reach (x5 front, side, and rear) in between
– 3 sets mountain climbers (x10), legs down (x10)
– 4 sets of deadlift high pulls (x5), biceps curls on single leg (x5), overhead press on other leg (x5)
– planks (60 secs; side, down, side) x2
– Ring of Fire squats/lunges (10, 8, 6, 4, 2)

Tuesday, March 4 – 6 miles, easy

I went for an easy run during lunch thinking it might be a little warmer running midday but it was still a brisk 18 degrees out. I think I might still be battling a little cold because my run was mostly a mucus-filled mess. Oh well!

Plan: 6 miles, easy (9:18/mile)
Actual: 6 miles in 52:40 at 8:46/mile
Splits:
(1) 8:59 (2) 8:33 (3) 8:47 (4) 8:53 (5) 8:41 (6) 8:46

Shoes: Saucony Mirage 3
Conditions: 18 degrees, kinda (barely) sunny

Wednesday, March 5 – 6 miles, easy

I had to split my run up today because when I went out during lunch I wasn’t feel too great. I had to do 6 miles easy so I ended up doing 4 miles at lunch and 2 miles after work on the treadmill.

Plan: 6 miles, easy (9:18/mile)
Actual:
-Run 1: 4.1 miles at 8:41/mile – (1) 8:33 (2) 8:45 (3) 8:44 (4) 8:44
-Run 2: 2 miles on the treadmill – (1) 9:13 (2) 8:41

Shoes: Asics Gel Flux
Conditions: 32 degrees, overcast (lunch run)

Thursday, March 6 – 60 minutes, Vinyasa Yoga

I had a long day at work and opted out of my post-work 800 repeats and opted in for an hour long yoga class with Adam. It was totally the right decision.

Friday, March 7 – 6 miles with 6×800

This was a pretty tough workout but it felt really good to stride it out for some repeats. I did it on the treadmill which wasn’t the best since the gym was really warm but it helped me maintain the paces. Instead of shooting for a specific time I decided to give myself a range between 7:35-7:47/mile which I was able to maintain.

Plan: 6 miles with 6×800 repeats with 400 recovery in between
Actual: 6 miles with 6×800 (paces between 7:35-7:47/mile) and 400 recovery

Shoes: Saucony Mirage 3
Conditions: Indoors, treadmill

Saturday, March 8 – 5 miles, easy

Today I ran with the local running store’s group run. It was really nice out which felt great but my legs were noticeably tired from yesterdays repeats.

Plan: 5 miles, easy (9:18/mile)

Actual: 5 miles in 43:00 at 8:48/mile

Sunday, March 9 – 11 miles, LSD

I’m not sure what my paces were for the last part of this hilly long run but they were probably on the slower side. I always forget how hilly this route is but I guess it doesn’t hurt to challenge myself a little more. I felt pretty good, although I still had difficulty breathing through my nose due to a cold/runny nose. The sun felt incredible!

Plan: 11 miles, long slow distance (9:18/mile)
Actual: 11 miles, no idea what my pace was but I think the total time was around 1:42 so I almost hit my long run pace dead on!

Shoes: Asics Gel Flux
Conditions: 37 degrees, sunny, but felt like I was running into a headwind almost the entire time.

Weekly Mileage Total: 34 miles

See all training recaps here.

St. Luke’s Half Marathon Training: Week Two

(source: Pinterest)

(source: Pinterest)

Last week was a really solid one for training and I am very happy to report I ran all FIVE days on my schedule and every run was pretty much 100 percent pain-free. I think my foot is finally really healing up. It’s definitely been a bit difficult to get back into the swing of things training-wise. I need to remember to fuel up properly (i.e. eat enough) and to get enough sleep. I also need to get used to doing more speed workouts. I had two workouts during week two of training and I don’t think (at least from what I can recall) I’ve ever done that before. It’s tough!

Monday, February 24 – IronStrength

– 3×15 jump squats and 3×10 rotary planks (on each arm)
– 3 sets rows from plank (x10), pushups (x10), situps with weights (x10)
– 3 sets plyometric lunges (x10), alternating sides of hamstring reach (x5 front, side, and rear) in between
– 3 sets mountain climbers (x10), legs down (x10)
– 4 sets of deadlift high pulls (x5), biceps curls on single leg (x5), overhead press on other leg (x5)
– planks (60 secs; side, down, side) x2
– Ring of Fire squats/lunges (10, 8, 6, 4, 2)

Tuesday, February 25 – 5.2 miles, easy

I ran with the group run out of my local running store tonight. My plan originally called for 6 miles with 4 miles at HMP (8:00/mile) but I was feeling really tired and run down all day today so I decided to switch it with my easy run day that was supposed to be Wednesday. It was also really cold out and my breathing was all messed up because I felt like I was sucking in frozen air the whole time. Not the best run.

Plan: 6 miles with 4 miles at HMP
Actual: Swapped with Wednesday’s 5 miles, easy

Shoes: Saucony Mirage 3
Conditions: 26 degrees, real feel 20, wind

Wednesday, February 26 – 6 miles with 4 miles at HMP (8:00/mile)

This was my second real workout of my sub-1:45 program and to be quite honest it was a little tough. The plan called for 6 miles with 4 miles at half marathon pace and I think it mostly felt tough because I ran on the treadmill. It was pretty stuffy at my gym and I just felt like I was struggling. But I got the workout done and I guess that’s what matters.

Plan: 6 miles with 4 miles at HMP (8:00/mile)
Actual: 6 miles in 50 minute (8:20/mile)
Splits:
1-mile warmup at 9:00/mile
HMP: (1) 8:13/mile (2) 8:06/mile (3) 8:00/mile (4) 7:57/mile
1-mile cooldown at 9:00/mile

Shoes: Saucony Mirage 3
Conditions: Treadmill, warm inside

Thursday, February 27 – 7 miles with 3×1-mile at 7:21/mile

This was my first ever attempt at running mile repeats and let me tell you, they are NOT easy. My coworker Megan helped to pace me for them which really helped. I knew my goal split of 7:21/mile was a little aggressive for me right now so in my head I was really shooting for anything under 8:00/mile which is my goal race pace.

Plan: 7 miles with 3×1-mile repeats and 800-m recovery in between
Actual:
1-mile warmup at 8:50/mile
Repeats:
(1) 7:16/mile – went out way too hard on this first one
(2) 7:50/mile
(3) 7:50/mile
800-m recovery jog in between each repeat
1.5-mile cool down

I noticed my pace really fluctuated during each mile. I would settle in to the appropriate pace at the beginning and during the second quarter start to slow, really slow the third quarter, and then sprint for the last 400m. I’ll have to really focus on maintaining an even pace the next time I try, even if it means going a bit slower.

Shoes: Saucony Mirage 3
Conditions: 27 degrees, feels like 18 degrees, wind gusts up to 35mph

Friday, February 28 – REST

Saturday, March 1 – 5 miles, easy

My plan called for an easy 5-mile shakeout before tomorrow’s long run. I felt pretty good but it was dreadfully cold. It’s March, where’s Spring?

Plan: 5 miles, easy (9:18/mile)
Actual: 5 miles in 44:00 at 8:48/mile

Shoes: Saucony Mirage 3
Conditions: 13 degrees with wind

Sunday, March 2 – 10 miles, LSD

I was really not looking forward to this run when I got up because it was so overcast and gloomy outside. I was pleasantly surprised when I stepped out my front door and realized it really wasn’t that cold out. I felt pretty good during this run but I’ve been battling a pesky cold lately so I could have felt better. My paces were all over the place though because I took a pretty hilly route for a little extra challenge, but felt good enough to go for a fast finish at the end.

Plan: 10 miles, LSD at 9:18/mile
Actual: 10 miles in 1:31:21 at 9:08/mile
Splits:
(1) 9:34 (2) 9:08 (3) 9:04 (4) 9:10 (5) 9:27 (6) 9:10 (7) 8:56 (8) 9:36 (9) 8:53 (10) 8:24

Shoes: Asics Gel Flux
Conditions: 32 degrees, overcast

Weekly Mileage Total: 33 miles

See all training recaps here.

{Monday Motivation} Love the Run

Ok, sometimes running does suck. Especially this winter. I went out for an easy 5-miler on Saturday and it felt like the hardest run of my life. It was 13 degrees out and breathing in the frigid air was less than enjoyable. But I got it done because that’s what we do as runners. Yes, I could have bailed on the run. Yes, I could have gone on the gym and ran the 5 miles while watching endless amounts of Kardashian episodes. But instead I sucked it up and went out for my sucky, freezing run. And you know what, I felt phenomenally better when I got back inside. So when I saw this graphic from Run Pretty Far on Pinterest this morning, I thought it was perfect for today. Here’s hoping for warmer, happier, and less suckier runs this week!

(Source: Pinterest)

(Source: Pinterest)