Monday, March 11, 2019

Illinois Marathon Training Weeks 9-11

Disclaimer:  I am running the Christie Clinic Illinois Marathon as a BibRave Pro, which means my entry fee was covered for me. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador) and check out to review, find, and write race reviews!  

Join me at the Illinois Marathon and use code bibraveillinois2019 to save $10 on any of the races (5K, 10K, half-marathon, marathon)! And let me know you'll be there so I can look for you!

Here I am with three more weeks of marathon training under my belt and one by one, things started to unravel progressively with each of those weeks.

Week 9
Week 9 was actually great.  I hit the plan target of 57 miles. I was laser focused on getting all of that week's running done before my family left for FL on Saturday morning and I did it.  I had to do 800s on a treadmill and they were fine, though slower than I typically do 800s on the roads.  I have come to terms with this fact for this training cycle.  I had a great tempo run at the Pettit (indoor track), even though I started having sinus symptoms.  I ended the week with a 15.2 mile long run during a particularly sunny day and wrote in my training log FELT GOOD!  I have been chasing that feeling ever since.

Week 10
Week 10 was spent in sunny, HOT Florida.  My family goes to FL every spring to visit my brother-in-law and since I have been marathon training for the past several years, I am always in the middle of training when we go there.  My focus is to do the best I can to get the running in.  Generally this means that I am waking up much earlier than my family to get it done before we spend all day in a theme park and this week was no different.  It was very hot and humid the week we were there, which, given the state of weather we had been experiencing in WI for the past two months was a welcome reprieve, however, my body was it utter revolt me asking it to perform suddenly in those conditions.  My kids are now at the magical age where they can make it all day and into the night at a theme park without nap or meltdown which mean we spent far more time at the parks than we typically do.  I was easily cataloging double my daily steps, which only contributed to my legs feeling sore.  On top of that, I didn't sleep through the night one time on vacation.  (Despite how I am making it sound, our vacation was really lovely and I wouldn't trade it for a week of great running.) I wasn't that down about it - my focus that week was on my family and even though the miles didn't feel great, I still logged 48 of them, which is only 2 miles short of the plan.

Week 11
I came home from FL with a lot of pain.  My left hamstring and hip situation was bad and I had a new right hip pain that came on mid-run on our last day in FL.  I was gimping around to even walk so I didn't push it and skipped my first strength workout of the week - 6 x 1 mile repeats.  I was sad to do this as this is usually a very strong workout for me, and one that I enjoy but I also feel like I'm skating on thin ice with my left hamstring situation - something that has been bothering me since my last marathon (in November).  I took the rest day and did the high mileage reset routine from Jasyoga instead.  This was a good call - all of that restorative movement felt amazing.  The next day, I did an easy paced 8 miles to test out my leg, which had been hurting throughout the night.  It felt ok.  The day after that, I was feeling pretty good.  I headed out the door intending to do a tempo run and see what happened.  I felt decent so I gave it a try and ended up with a 6:44 average pace tempo run.  This was not my goal pace (6:30) at all, but it was something.  The following day I did another easy-paced run and that afternoon BAM.  I felt like I had been hit by a ton of bricks.  Another cold!  ARGH.  I had a rough weekend and missed my first 16-miler of the plan.  I ended this week TWENTY miles under plan.  Chalk that up to quite possibly the worst marathon training week I have ever had.

So here we are.  Monday morning.  A fresh start.  I had a great night's sleep. My head is less congested than it has been and my leg is still attached.  I am not where I thought I would be in this cycle but I'm still committed to showing up and giving what I can on the day.  7 weeks until race day!