Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Weekly Training Update: 6/9-6/15

Once upon a time, before I could run my first mile ... before I even believed I could run that first mile, there was Mark. He was the one who didn't just believe I could do it - he was the one who knew I could do it.

And so it only seemed fitting to celebrate Father's Day and all that he has given me and Miles by going out for a solo run.

OK. Really, I just needed to get in one last long run before ZOOMA Napa Valley but Mark's contribution to my running cannot be understated. He has been a constant source of inspiration and motivation, and he's always given me the push to go outside the limits.

So a few days late and a couple miles short, I'd like to share the things Mark has taught me about running.

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There's no distance requirement to qualify as a runner. When Mark and I were first married, he would go on 3-mile runs on the same route nearly every day. He would run 1.5 miles down the street and the run 1.5 miles back. I thought it was equally amazing and boring that he did this and was most definitely a runner. I never thought that he needed to run more often, harder or farther. I know I can get caught up in meeting mileage goals that certain distances don't seem like enough but going out and being active is enough.

Take recovery seriously. I put Mark on a lifting plan in the winter (per his request), and it cut into the time he could devote to cardio. To make the most of those sessions, I programmed HIIT workouts on the treadmill. He would warm up for a mile and then do 1-minute intervals at a fast pace and then recover for 1 minute. Not too long ago, he shared that he did the fast interval at 9.0 (6:40 pace) and his recovery speed was 5.0 (12-minute pace). I could not grasp why he would want to go so slow, relatively, to recover. I often fret about my overall pace, even when doing intervals, that I do not give myself the rest I need during workouts. His example has shown me that it's not only OK to rest during the recovery interval but you will perform better if you do.

Ease into it. The first mile sucks. It always will. Deal with it and find your groove.

Run more, race less. Mark runs to run. Sometimes he runs fast, sometimes he runs a little less fast. He does what he feels like and only if he feels good. He doesn't run because he's training for something. While some might think you need a goal to keep running, Mark finds that the satisfaction in movement is enough - as it should be. For him, the race isn't the goal, the prize - it's the fitness.

Wear sunglasses. It keeps the bugs out of your eyes.

Yes you can. Mark has a good sense of self and feels quite confident in his athletic abilities. Sometimes, when I'm particularly cranky, I think it borders on arrogance but it's mostly because I'm jealous. I wish I could believe in myself the way he does. Not only would it take out some of the anxiety but it also sets us up for success. Repeat after him: I think I can. I know I can. Yes. I. Did.

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The week, in training:

Monday, June 9

Tuesday, June 10
RUN | 4 miles    
Time: 36:52     Pace: 9:13
Sore legs + Stroller = Mediocre run. I just couldn't find my groove but it was a beautiful morning and the toddler was well behaved. I also had the dog with me, and he wasn't too happy to be tackling 4 miles.

Wednesday, June 11
RUN | 5.71 miles 
Time: 52:10     Pace: 9:08
We were really strong the first half, perhaps a bit too strong, but I think I'm over fretting about positive splits. Plus, it was HILLY the second half. We went on our alternate route, which was a nice change of scenery.

Thursday, June 5
RUN | 6.4 miles
Time: 58:48     Pace: 9:11
This run was just delicious. I met Tami for the second day in a row, and we made an an effort to go out a bit slower. We eased into a comfortable pace and felt much better than the day before.

CROSS TRAINING | Y boot camp
Stations with boxing intervals

Friday, June 13
CROSS TRAINING | 10.9-mile bike ride
A good old fashioned family ride.

Saturday, June 14 
RUN | Hare & Hounds 5K
Time: 27:14     Pace: 8:46
Read the recap here.

Sunday, June 15
RUN | 12.25 miles 
Time: 1:52:48     Pace: 9:12
Short version: Best long run in some time.

Longer version: I was on my own for this one since I had an old child care situation. I seized the chance to control the pace and made it my goal to slow it down. The early miles felt nice so I decided to do the first 4 as LSD, the next 4 at RP and then slow it down for final 4. I did pretty well with it. Mid-4 miles were: 9:10, 9:00, 9:03, 8:55. I stopped home at 8.5 to go to the bathroom, ditch my hydration pack and shirt and grab a new hat. Took a mile to find my pace but finished the 12th mile strong with sub-9 pace.


  1. um, i got tired just reading your week in training. you are one serious rockstar!

  2. Wise words for any runner. Mark sounds like a gem!

  3. Nice week of training, girl

  4. I love the tips!! They are spot on! I think that I would get more out of training if I didn't race as much but that is the fun part. That is why I train!!!
    Great week and long run!! Napa will be here soon!!! :)