Monday, September 23, 2013

Dallas Marathon Training: Week 10 Complete!

Last week's workouts:
Sun 9/15: Rest
Mon 9/16: 40 min base/easy run 4.25 mi, 49:07 + 1 hr sweaty vinyasa yoga
Tues 9/17: Hill repeats x 7 (eep) 5.46 mi, 1:30:42
Wed 9/18: 50 min recovery run 4.13 mi, 48:38
Thurs 9/19: Strength training (with 10 min elliptical warmup)
Fri: 9/20: 1 hr base + strides 3.14 mi, 35:33
Sat 9/21: Tour des Fleurs 20k 12.4 mi, 1:04:45

For some reason, on Monday I had 50 minutes in my head. Hey, I don't think clearly early in the morning! Tuesday's hill workout was tough, but we got through it!

Thursday night, it stormed. When I woke up Friday morning, it was still storming but there was no lightning so I braved the elements and did (part of) my run. I really dislike running in the rain. I had to bribe myself with the promise of Starbucks just to get out and do half of my run. (And then I was running late for work, so I didn't even get my Starbucks... I owe myself.)

The good thing about the rain was that it brought cooler temperatures! On Saturday morning, we had clear skies and it was only in the upper 60's. My friend Stacey picked me up for the Tour des Fleurs race. I was doing the 20k, which started at 7:00 and Stacey was doing the 10k, her very first, which didn't start until 7:40. We got to the Arboretum just after 6:00am and parked on site because I'm a member. (Otherwise we would have needed to park in remote parking and taken a shuttle to the Arboretum.) The Arboretum was all decorated for fall with pumpkins and gourds everywhere!

(My visor has a reflective logo on it, I was not headed into the mines.)

I hung out with Stacey until about 6:50, when I headed to the start line. We were off just as the sun was coming up! The 20k course ran along the east side of the lake, then up a big hill to Mockingbird, then back to the lake. Not long after we got back to the lake (at around the halfway point), I ran into Heather from my training group. We ran together and chatted for a couple of miles until she had to slow down.

Around the 10 mile mark, we turned off the trail, onto a bridge that leads to the Santa Fe trail. I actually would have missed this part of the course had I not seen other racers coming back on the bridge. I would have thought there should have been a volunteer or some kind of marking to tell us to turn onto the bridge. After this switch-back on the bridge, we finished the lake loop to end up back at the Arboretum. As I got to the finish line, I saw my parents had come to cheer! It's always fun to see them at races, they can't always make it but always have fun when they are able to.

We headed into the Arboretum so I could meet up with Stacey and our other friend Patrick. I was anxious to hear how Stacey's first 10k went, especially because she had been having foot pain in the week leading up to it. As soon as Stacey and Patrick saw me, they gave me a thumbs-down. I immediately thought Stacey hadn't been able to finish, but as it turns out the 10k route was very short, by over a mile! TDF sent out an email to participants that evening, but the lead motorcycle police escort had missed a turn and accidentally cut a mile off the course. Stacey and Patrick were very disappointed, they had trained for 6.2 miles. I remembered the part on the 20k course that would have been easy to miss and I think it was a similar problem: not well-marked and nobody to direct runners the correct way.

The good news is that the after-party was lots of fun! There was live music, food, beer and of course a beautiful day to be enjoyed!

The weather is finally starting to cool off and feel like fall! I am really looking forward to some beautiful running weather in the coming weeks.

This week's plans:
Sun 9/22: Rest
Mon 9/23: Base/easy run 3.83 mi, 42:54 + 1 hour vinyasa yoga
Tues 9/24: 6x800 speed workout
Wed 9/25: 50 min recovery run
Thurs 9/26: Strength training
Fri 9/27: 1 hour base + strides
Sat 9/28: 16 mi long

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Dallas Marathon Training: Week 9 Complete!

Sun 9/8: 3.27 mi, 39:28 (I'm not sure how accurate my watch was, some of the other trail runners said the loop was closer to 3.5 miles)
Mon 9/9: Rest
Tues 9/10: Intervals 3x2 mi 7.03 mi, 1:11:33
Wed 9/11: 50 min recovery run Sweaty vinyasa, 1 hour
Thurs 9/12: 5.01 mi, 59:16 (base + strides) + Strength training (arms and abs)
Fri 9/13: 1 hour base + strides 3.95 mi, 47:35 (recovery)
Sat 9/14: 16 miles long 15.81 mi, 2:48:48

Tuesday was another tough workout. We did a warmup mile, then picked up the pace to about a 9:00min/mile for two miles, recovered for 5 minutes, then another two 9:00 miles and finally a cooldown mile. I kept up with the group for the first tempo interval, but fell behind on the second. I wasn't the only one, though, Leslie and I stuck together for the last part. Oh, and we saw a coyote just off the trail!

I had to shuffle around the rest of my planned workouts this week. But I had a good reason! On Tuesday morning, I got an email from my yoga instructor, I had entered a drawing for a free month of yoga and I won! He wanted me to come to the Wednesday night class so he could take a picture with me for the newsletter. So I skipped my planned recovery run and recovered with yoga instead.

I decided to do my base with strides run on Thursday and do my recovery/shakeout run on Friday (the day before my long run). I am just going to have to accept that my early morning runs are going to be slow! I haven't had coffee or any fuel (that would require getting up much earlier), so I just don't have the energy. I also tested out my new hydration waist pack, I like it! I wish it had more room to store stuff (my phone, ID and a bag of Honey Stinger chews barely fit) but it's pretty lightweight and comfortable.

Saturday's run went well! Early in the run, we saw two more coyotes, eek! My group was doing 14 miles with a fast finish, meaning we would pick up the pace from miles 10-13, to about a 9:30 min/mile. Because I was adding on two extra miles afterwards (for a total of 16), I didn't want to push it too much, so I stuck with my buddy Michael and our coach Kelly at closer to a 10:00min/mile pace. We got back to the DRC Clubhouse and I kept going a little further, but I misjudged when I was supposed to turn around so ended up just short of 16 miles. I ran around the parking lot a couple of times trying to get to 16, but finally felt dumb and decided to just say, "Close enough!"

After the long run, I joined some friends for breakfast at Buzzbrews. This was a mini-reunion of my training group from last year, we had a great time catching up! And breakfast was delicious!

Of course I blinked, I promise I had not nodded off at the table!

This week's plans:
Sun 9/15: Rest
Mon 9/16: 40 min base/easy run + 1 hr sweaty vinyasa yoga
Tues 9/17: Hill repeats x 7 (eep)
Wed 9/18: 50 min recovery run
Thurs 9/19: Strength training
Fri: 9/20: 1 hr base + strides
Sat 9/21: Tour des Fleurs 20k

Have a happy and healthy week!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Dallas Marathon Training: Week 8 Complete!

Last week's workouts:
Sun 9/1: 6.5 mi trail run, 1:16:54
Mon 9/2: 75 min vinyasa flow
Tues 9/3: Speed workout, 8x400's 5.75 mi total (not sure on the time, my watch ran out of batteries)
Wed 9/4: Recovery 45 min run 3.25 mi, 37:00
Thurs 9/5: Lower body strength training (with 15 min elliptical warmup)
Fri 9/6: 60 min base + strides 5.27mi, 59:21
Sat: 9/7: 14 miles long (part of that will be the DRC Breakfast Bash 5 mile race) Total: 13.94 mi, 2:30:02

Monday's yoga class was an intro to vinyasa. I'm not new to yoga or vinyasa in particular, but it was still very beneficial to take a beginner's class. I learned a few new things and got a refresher on proper alignment for poses.

Tuesday's speed workout was tough! We started with a one mile warmup and then alternated 400 meters (one lap around the track) at high speed with 400 meters of recovery, followed by a .75 mi cooldown. For the high speed laps, our goal was to make it around the track in about 1:52, a 7:28 pace. My legs were crazy sore afterwards. In fact, I cut my recovery run a little short on Wednesday because I had a lot of pain in my shin. I did a lot of foam rolling afterwards and that really relieved the pain!

Saturday's run was a fun one. Our group was doing 14 miles, but a few of us had signed up for the DRC Breakfast Bash 5 Mile race and wanted to participate. So my buddies Michael and Jessica met me at Winfrey Point and we did a loop around White Rock Lake. With one shortcut, our total mileage was 8.87 miles in 1:37:39. We got back to Winfrey Point about 7:40 am for the 8:00 race. We got our bibs and headed to the start line. I also dropped my hand-held water bottle off at my car, I decided I would be fine just using the race's water stops.

The three of us started together, but Jessica turned around just after the half-mile mark. She was having some pretty major shin pain that started when we had been waiting for the race to start. She was smart and decided not to push it and risk an injury. Michael and I ran the rest of the race together. We had planned on keeping the same pace as our earlier mileage, about 11:00 min/mile. However, we were both feeling pretty good (and probably got caught up in the race excitement) and finished in 52:17 (official chip time), an average of 10:20 min/mile. My watch showed 5.07 in 52:23, and I used this for my log only because that extra .07 got me closer to our planned 14 miles. :)

We found Jessica and got in line for breakfast, provided by Rusty Taco, yum! I got two egg, cheese and potato tacos and they really hit the spot! I'm not sure that there is anything better than breakfast tacos after a long run! The weather was humid and I was definitely sweaty but I stayed well-hydrated throughout the run and afterwards.

I started off Week 9 with another trail run! This week, I met some trail runners at the Northshore Trail off of Lake Grapevine. I only did a short loop because I needed to get about my day, but it was a good way to get in an easy run.

This week's plans:
Sun 9/8: 3.27 mi, 39:28 (I'm not sure how accurate my watch was, some of the other trail runners said the loop was closer to 3.5 miles)
Mon 9/9: Rest
Tues 9/10: Intervals 3x2 mi
Wed 9/11: 50 min recovery run
Thurs 9/12: Strength training
Fri 9/13: 1 hour base + strides
Sat 9/14: 16 miles long

We actually only have 14 miles on the schedule for our long run, with 16 miles the next weekend (9/21). However, I have a 20k race on that day so I'm going to add on 2 miles this coming Saturday so I don't have to do any extra on race day.

Have a happy and healthy week!

Monday, September 2, 2013

Dallas Marathon Training: Week 7 complete!

Last week's planned and actual:
Sun 8/25: 45 min walk
Mon 8/26: 2.79 mi, 30:25
Tues 8/27: 5x hill repeats 4.6mi, 52:00
Wed 8/28: Recovery 45 min run 3.34mi, 42:08 + 60 min sweaty vinyasa practice
Thurs 8/29: Yoga and/or lower body strength training Rest
Fri 8/30: 60 min base + strides 5.09mi, 59:04
Sat 8/31: 13 mi long 13.35mi, 2:28:40

Tuesday's hill workout was tough! Our group met at Norbuck Park and ran to Flagpole Hill (and back afterwards, about 1 mile each way). At Flagpole Hill, we practiced springing and binding, basically long strides up one side, recovery jog as we went down, then high knees on the way back up. Whew!

I decided I wanted to make a Wednesday evening yoga class, so I got up early that morning to do my recovery run and my legs were crazy sore from the previous night's workout. Wednesday night's vinyasa practice had lots of warrior (lunging) poses, so Thursday my legs needed a break! Even Friday morning, they were still sore as I did my base plus strides workout. My pace was slower than it should have been, but the effort was definitely there!

Saturday morning's long run was a fun one, though very hot and humid! I drank lots of water (and some Gatorade) throughout, but I think I sweated it all out and then some! We ran part of our route on the Santa Fe Trail, which I had not been on before. Once we were back at the lake, our group kind of separated and I stayed back with Brandon who was struggling a bit. We took a few walk breaks the last mile, but finished strong.

Sunday morning, I got up early and met a trail-running group at Big Cedar Wilderness Trail for a very fun run! I was hoping for a short recovery run, but ended up starting out with some more experienced trail runners for a 6.5 mile loop. I thought after a while I would drop back, but I kept up with them out of fear of getting lost! It was a really great run, my legs felt surprisingly fresh afterwards. Because trails are (obviously) a softer surface than road, it's much easier on your feet and legs.

A group shot after the run.

Today is Labor Day, so I'm off work. It's raining and I'm about to head to a vinyasa practice at the yoga studio. Is there anything better than yoga with the sound of rain in the background?

This week's plans:
Sun 9/1: 6.5 mi trail run, 1:16:54
Mon 9/2: 1 hour vinyasa flow
Tues 9/3: Speed workout, 8x400's
Wed 9/4: Recovery 45 min run
Thurs 9/5: Lower body strength training
Fri 9/6: 60 min base + strides
Sat: 9/7: 14 miles long (part of that will be the DRC Breakfast Bash 5 mile race)

Have a happy and healthy week!