2019 planning, and a new Garmin

My new Garmin came on Wednesday! I didn’t get to take it home and play with it until Thursday night. All the notifications! I turned them off nearly immediately, so pardon my continued lack of response to texts while running. 🙂 I haven’t figured out friends yet or anything, but happy to add anyone.

what, you don’t pose in the bathroom mirror for a leggings & Garmin selfie? 😉

***

NYRR 2019 calendar through April is up as is early bird member pricing. Decisions!

I was slightly disappointed to hear on Friday that the Lebow Half is not going to be part of 4/6 next year. Instead, it will be replaced by the Manhattan 7 Miler. This fits with the general drop in the 4/6 series’ distances. Queens is a 10K and the Bronx is 10 Miles with Brooklyn and Staten Island still half marathons. It’s not a huge issue for me, personally, as I wasn’t planning to go the guaranteed entry route for the 2020 NYC Half, but I wonder what it’s going to do for the non Brooklyn races’ appeal. (That one always sells out in a heartbeat). I think it’s probably going to be fewer guaranteed entries for the Half, which might make it easier for Road Runners to accommodate their other runners.

speaking of guaranteed entry, this is nice to see officially

NYRR Races I’m thinking of for the moment:

  • Joe Kleinerman 10K – January 5
  • Lebow Half – January 20. I’m honestly torn. It was my first, and it’s Fred Lebow! and I’d like to do it again but I’m not sure I’ll be ready for a Half with those hills in just over three months given what my schedule is like due to work. I don’t want to be undertrained like last year, but I know I’m coming in with a better base. Is that the sound of someone waffling toward yes? Probably.
  • Gridiron 4M – February 3. Dad’s birthday. I’ll almost definitely do this as it was a favorite.
  • NYC Half – March 17. I’m doing this for sure.
  • SHAPE Women’s Half – April 14 – I was excited for this and have been talking on and off about doing it instead of Lebow for a Spring Half, but it’s just so much more expensive. I don’t think I’m going to do this, or at least I won’t decide until much closer to as there’s no early registration deadline.

I did sign up for Run the Year for my third year. Looking forward to the motivation there.

Planning for #RunTheYear 2019 and exploring @NYRR race options Click To Tweet

Are you running any of these?

***

Back to 2018, I was still trying to wrap (no pun intended) my head around whether Grete’s Great Gallop was a PR. I didn’t realize how few Central Park races I do that are more than 5 miles. I knew I couldn’t compare it to the Manhattan 7M as that was a literal hot mess run/walk. It wasn’t fair to compare it to my first 10K as that was almost a year and a half ago (but hey, PR!) and the two Minis run the opposite direction. So I decided to look at the splits for the Lebow Half.

NYRR Manhattan Half Details

My 10K split was 1:12:22 and I think that’s representative as I didn’t walk until after the Harlem Hills. Grete’s time? 1:11:28. So a nearly one minute PR after avoiding hills? Yep, I’m happy with that.

No formal race recap, as I don’t have that much to say. It’s nice to be able to roll out of bed and run to the start. I didn’t struggle as much on the Harlem Hills as I feared I might, and overall I felt strong. I know what I need to do to get stronger on the hills ahead of either of the Central Park Half Marathons, and I need to do it. Sometimes not overthinking is just perfect.

***

Weekly Wrap, Week of 10.9. Linking up with Holly and Wendy:

  • Monday: semi-holiday Monday. Wasn’t in the office but did have to work. After breakfast with friends at The Coffee Shop one last time, I headed to the Run Center because I wanted to run Central Park. The weather wasn’t ideal – it was 65 and 92% humidity, but I didn’t have it in me to hit the treadmill. I was glad I stopped at the Run Center because while I had a well packed gym bag, I forgot socks. New Balance aren’t cheap, but they’re cheaper than Blink and I like the socks better.  The original plan was to go long because I could, but the humidity wasn’t going to let that happen. After my watch finally (sort of) got a signal, I ran until a potty break. Did someone say five cups of coffee? That pace was so laughably off I almost just turned off the watch and ran, but when it seemed to finally keep a signal, I went hard for a mile and a half until I just hit a humidity wall. After recovery I decided to close out the loop with a burst of as fast/far as I could. Nice to do some pseudo speed work outdoors, but I really want to get to the track. One day. Followed this up with a good stretch and strengthen session at the gym.
  • Tuesday: off. Tickets to see Gloria Steinem play. This was well-timed as my quads are quite sore from Monday’s kettlebell circuit. Phenomenal production and for anyone who might be in New York through January, I definitely recommend it. Christine Lahti is a fabulous Gloria.
  • Wednesday: Ended up being a cross train day after guest speaking in a class. Why did I go bike over row or walk home? I won’t lie: I wanted to finish Chamber of Secrets. Consequence of seeing Harry Potter: A History of Magic at New-York Historical Society last week and a desire to escape current events and my usual non-fiction habits is a Harry Potter rereading binge.
  • Thursday: exciting announcement about the Manhattan Greenway. I love walking and running along the rivers and I’m really hopeful it will one day be a complete path around Manhattan’s perimeter. Riverside walk > city streets any day. Run group got rained out. The gym was super crowded as I was there early and it took too long to get a treadmill. When I finally got one, I had nothing. Gutting out a mile was all I could do. Having a sore foot from bad shoes didn’t help (one foot only, I think I lost weight in it causing rubbing?) nor did some bad food choices.  Chalked it up to better than nothing and went home to watch my beloved Giants lose spectacularly. Can we get a do over on Thursday?
I love this app display!
and a watch display I can read at dusk!
  • Friday: Can you tell I enjoyed my Garmin’s first adventure? I wanted to get out and play all day as it was a beautiful, crisp fall day. A lunch walk while usually restorative did nothing for my desire to go back to the office and plow through my to do list. Short weeks seem the longest and luckily shortly after 5 there was a mass exodus and I booked it to the Run Center to stash my bags and hit the Park. Could not believe how quickly the Garmin found a signal! I opted for the office run group loop of the last two weeks and was partially curious whether I could maintain that pace solo. YEP! I actually found it easier because I wasn’t trying to talk and because it was a perfect low humidity 57 degrees. I was curious whether the Garmin would hit the mental mile markers that I’m used to with the TomTom and was pleased to see they were roughly the same spots. Makes me confident that the below is a legit comparison. 13 seconds off my July 30 outdoor and August 1 treadmill PRs and this included Cat Hill where those did not. WOW. Can’t wait to run some more this weekend. No music was non issue. As I’ve just learned you can listen to podcasts offline, I have some options if I go that route.
Garmin, but also almost reality
  • Saturday: after early rains the day was a beautiful, crisp fall day. How did I mark it? Being a lazy slug until about 3. I needed it, and don’t regret it one bit. I made a deal with myself though, if I wasn’t going to leave enough time for a long run, I was going hard. After a slightly chilly walk to Central Park, I did a ~ one mile warmup and then completed two loops! of Harlem Hills before repeating the warmup as a cool down. I rarely do that loop of my own volition, and never twice. I think it came from a place of thinking about Lebow. If I’m doing it, I want to be strong going into it. I’m less worried about the distance, but the hills were an issue. I think I can do this. Two laps without walking was huge and gives me confidence I have a solid base to build off. I won’t PR on this course, but I can beat 2018.
OK, I can see why these shots appeal
Closet switch, and purge. #SparkJoy
  • Sunday: another beautiful day. After a late start due to sleeping in as fall also good for sleeping! I needed to drop off the results of my switching season closet purge. Goodwill is a couple of blocks north and as I knew I didn’t want to do any hills so I explored the East River Esplanade with a goal of running to the Wards Island Bridge and back for ~2-3 miles. When I turned south at 96th St. to do that short loop I realized the esplanade was open to the Ferry! Whee. I’m so tired of running up York. So I just continued south to Starbucks for a 1.75 mile shakeout. The stairs by the Ferry aren’t fun, and I won’t touch them when wet as they’re metal, but manageable.  This is the first time I’ve run four days in a row ever/in a very long time and I feel good. Had a good foam roll and will do the same tomorrow at the gym. Rolling my feet while watching football. Lazy Sunday needed.

Week Plan?

  • Monday: Cross train
  • Tuesday: Run?
  • Wednesday: Off. Book group
  • Thursday: Office run group
  • Friday: run before work?
  • Weekend: Rochester

Super Sunday: 5K PR edition

so as I left the Weekly Wrap, I couldn’t decide whether I wanted to run or not. I actually did want to run, but was questioning whether two days completely off would be smarter for my knee’s healing. Despite changing into my running clothes as soon as I got home, I was using that as an excuse to sit on the couch and catch up on email after a few days away. I’ve had my new phone since March and haven’t put email on it-and don’t miss it. So much clutter.

I was less than one thousand steps short of my Fitbit goal and after a few off days due to rain, being in suburbia I really wanted to hit it. So I decided to head to the East River Promenade and just do the top level/Finley Walk loop which is about a mile and see how I felt mentally and physically.  I knew once I got going, I’d go. Oh the mental games we play.

it was such a beautiful evening

I turned south to get the full distance of the upper loop and as soon as I got there, I decided I did want to head south toward 59th street. My knee felt good on the downhill ramp and despite being absolutely gorgeous out, it wasn’t too crowded so I wasn’t forced to play a game of dodg’em. I was pleased to see the first mile come in sub 11:00 after Friday morning’s molasses crawl. The (relative) lack of humidity made a huge difference.  I decided I’d see how mile two came in before deciding whether I’d go for the 5K PR or just a three-four mile run.

Have a 6m mile, and then a 116m one!

Dear TomTom, please find your brain.

Mile 2 coming in at 9:33 might be a little generous, but it didn’t feel ridiculously off. I’ve had that happen before and since mile two was completely flat along the lower promenade between 60th and 81st streets, I think it’s possible that it was right.  I had mentioned in a comment to Charlie that my watch had been having issues, but this is the first time it was bouncing all over with no scaffolding or other issue that I’d expect to cause it.  I guess it’s time to start planning for a watch upgrade. I’ve gotten so used to the music on my TomTom and I don’t imagine that’s going to be an easy to find, affordable option. Any particular watch favorites? I have a Fitbit I use for daily steps, just looking for something to track runs with so size less of an issue.

I knew mile three would drop off because it has the 450 feet-long ramp back up to Finley Walk, but it felt good and I felt strong as I headed around Gracie Mansion toward Asphalt Green. I couldn’t believe it when the watch beeped three miles at 10:26 and I knew I was close. I pushed hard for the last .13 (Strava math) and couldn’t believe it when I saw my watch.

WOW!

BAM!

The original plan was to re-start the watch and run home, but the magic hour sky was perfect and I wanted to spy on the Ferry construction so I opted for a longer walking cool down during which I contemplated the run.

is that a ferry dock I spy?
guess it’s not opening this summer

I still had 32:16 on the brain and thought this was a four second PR, but I realized when I got home & could sync watch that it (actually 32:15) was for 3.08. WOW. It turned out that 32:41 was the actual “check in” 5K for July. Strava actually was a little too generous with 32:04 running time, crediting me for the water fountain pit stop.  I’m going with RunKeeper’s 32:11/10:18 pace. I didn’t even get in the full month of speed training that I wanted due to the PF flare and subsequent fall, but this is a-ma-zing. Sub 30 is still a long-term dream, but I’m thinking I may even get below 32 by summer’s end depending on whether I can do speed training in August. Even if I don’t, I’m super happy with how this speed training whim turned out.

Like the Riverside Park run, I loved that this speed/pace happened outside because while I don’t think there’s an unfair advantage in treadmill running, it’s definitely easier to maintain your pace indoors. I’ve had a love/hate relationship with the East River path that stems back to it being the first place I ever ran outdoors, so that the PR happened here was extra special. As I mentioned in Charlie’s post on PRs, I count runs as well as races. This is especially true for 5Ks since they’re so relatively rare as races.

Since the check-in 5K was on the treadmill, the plan for tomorrow is to run 5K there and see what speed comes of it. I’m excited for what the balance of 2018 will bring.

 

 

 

Training and Recovery, Week of 6.24 and #GoTheDist mid-year

You know those runs that are just absolute perfection in every way? That happened on Wednesday.

This was an interesting week, running wise. The original plan earlier in June was to take this week off as I had a feeling I’d be slightly burned out from all of the June races. In some ways, being sick last week and taking it easy cleared that and come Tuesday I was antsy to run. Antsy in the sense that I was sitting in a meeting and wanted to be outside. The mid 70s, zero humidity weather certainly helped with that, and I was glad to feel restored.

I realized in June that I really liked training for something, which I’d been doing in some form since October of last year. I want to take advantage of this window with no double digit races on the calendar, although I might do a ten mile in September. One challenge I really enjoyed last year was Run the Year’s 4x5K challenge when during June you were meant to run a baseline 5K and then three more to see if you improved. I did! Since one of my goals is to eventually get to sub 30 5K, I decided July would be perfect for it since heat would very likely mean a lot of indoor treadmill runs. I don’t have a final 5K planned as checkout, although this NYRR 5K is a possibility. More on the “check in” race below.

Weekly Wrap with Wendy and Holly.

  • Monday, planned off day from running and the gym. My legs were tired and slightly sore from the weekend’s races and while I’d have loved a date with the foam roller, I had a work event that culminated in this phenomenal sunset. Mother Nature truly is pure magic.
  • Tuesday, I had an end of day meeting near Blink NoHo, which I’ve come to quite like. I don’t go there often as it’s not convenient, but I thought I would. And then I realized I’d forgotten my watch and my headphones. As much as I don’t mind the treadmill, I mostly cannot do it without music or another distraction. Luckily, it was beautiful outside and I decided to hit my favorite part of Central Park. It was initially tough going as the bridle path had seen a lot of traffic that day and the dust & gravel was pretty stirred up. None of that helped the lingering cough so I walked the final hill and headed to the reservoir where I knew there was a water fountain. Wetting my lungs helped as I turned southeast and headed back to the start. Mileage is iffy as I was running Strava on my phone and it had some signal issues. But comfortable calling it just shy of 3.5 miles. A wonderful run. Sometimes it’s nice to be relatively electronics free.
really coming to love shorts. Forever terrible at selfies
  • Wednesday I wanted to run outside again but when I left the office it was threatening rain so I decided to head to the gym. I didn’t really have a plan in mind and hadn’t settled on the speed work I mentioned above yet, so just turned the treadmill on at 5.7 and went. It felt really, really good. I ended up a second off the 5K PR but what was awesome was that it felt almost easy aside from the residual coughing. While I said I’d realized I wasn’t regressing, it was nice to see that in results. I could have gone longer, but decided to give my lungs a break. I followed it up with some strength training. At 32:41 that is my July baseline 5K
when Keelie asks for a squat selfie and the plank is feeling solid. Plankie!
  • Thursday, planned off day due to medical appointment. That’s a good thing as the flooding was kind of crazy. Oddly I’d planned for the worst after this appointment (nothing super serious, but like many I’m paying for prior skin damage: love how Deb put it. And follow her advice too.) I love my dermatologist and ahead of taking off this mole she gave me a bunch of surgical consent forms and aftercare warnings. Guess it wasn’t getting frozen off. I planned to have Wednesday be my last run in case. It was relatively painless, with the only bothersome thing being the snipping sound so close to my ear and of course trying to keep a bandaid stuck in sweaty area with hair complicating matters. Better safe than sorry, and I’ll know whether it was something to worry about when I go back in two weeks. Curious about what the scar is going to look like, though I doubt it will be more prominent than the mole.
if you have to wear a bandaid on your face, might as well have fun on Summer Friday
  • By Friday I felt completely fine so after work I headed to the gym. The speed plan was firmly in my brain, coupled with reading the intervals chapter in Amby Burfoot’s Run Foreverand I decided to start there. After a .25 mile warmup (I have no patience), I alternated 6.2 and 5.5 with a less than .1 mile recovery break at 3.3mph after each 6.2. I made a game of it to use as little of that .1 mile as needed and got it as low as .07. The splits looked pretty funny as the walk recovery ate into the 5.5mph intervals. Totaled 3.25 miles of intervals and 3.51 overall. Math much? 6.2 was random, it’s my usual closeout speed of workouts but I wasn’t sure I could sustain repeat intervals at .25, so I decided I’d start there and drop to 6.0 if needed. Nope. I’m not sure yet whether my goal is to eliminate the walk intervals or raise base/fast speeds by month’s end. Thinking through that now. On the heels of a successful run, I hit the beach with a book or three. Summer Friday goals indeed
  • Saturday, completely off day. Too hot and I needed a mental health day. Still trying to kick the last of this cold, and although it was too hot to sleep in, I got some lovely rest.
  • Sunday, maybe run* (see below), probably row. Definitely play in a splashpad

GoTheDist

I cannot believe we’re at the mid-year point of #GoTheDist/Run the Year. Where has 2018 gone?

June

  • 479,755 Steps
  • 59.82 Miles Run
  • 210.39 Miles Run/Walked

Runfession, I saw the running mileage Saturday morning when I entered Friday’s run into my spreadsheet. I actually thought I was closer to 58. Why did I let it go? I’m having a (minor and hope to keep it that way) PF flare and decided it was going to be a rest day. Could I have gotten .18 miles without hurting? Probably. Would I have stopped at .18? Probably not. I also could have picked that up had I run home from one of the two races where I opted to walk. The PF said hello when I walked barefoot on the beach. I know better, but sometimes you just have to. I went to JackRabbit and got a new roller ball and will be better at my stretches. I also think I need to lay off the planks a bit as those don’t feel so good in the foot. Determined not to let this be a major flare and will ease into July as needed.

210 is just above what I need to hit my stretch Run the Year goal, so that’s perfect.

Q2

  • 1,467,553 Steps
  • 174.99 Miles Run
  • 642.22 Miles Run/Walked

OK, that running one is way more annoying than 59.82. But as I predicted at the end of Q1 when I was slightly off pace, spring/summer would be better.

2018 to Date

  • 2,825,182 Steps
  • 344.32 Miles Run
  • 1236.75 Miles Run/Walked

overall, I’m thrilled. I’m slightly off pace on the running, and 2,500 miles run/walked but I knew both to be stretch goals and they’re still in play. I’m 100% confident I’ll get 700 miles run on the year even though I won’t have the half marathon training I had in the first part of the year. This is insane compared with the midway point last year, and I really love the progress I’m making. 2018 goals are well in sight, although I switched to running mileage only for RTY so the team ones don’t quite make sense. Oh and a year into Amerithon, I’m in Missouri! I didn’t enjoy that as much as RTY, and I really dislike that RTY went to their tracker as I forever need to re-sync.

Gym Visits:

38 for the March – August window I was trying to get ahead this month while also catch up from May’s time away as I know I’ll be away in August.  I need 50 overall so should be in good shape. There’s been a lot of outdoor running followed by gym to stretch

Reading:

I’ve read 61 books on the year and will likely finish 62 today, which would mark Book 5 in #20BooksOfSummer. Overall, 17 ahead of schedule. WOW. Maybe 100 will happen?

 

Women Run the World, 2018 edition

Grandma always asked, “What, do you want a medal?” “Yes. Yes I do”

I love the Mini!

As I thought about a goal, I knew it was going to be a weird one. My 10K outdoor PR is from Rockland Lake, flat as a pancake on a beautiful November afternoon. On the other hand, I knew the race would be a personal course record because I wasn’t trained last year and was injured. On the other other hand, I haven’t touched the Harlem hills since January. I finally set my goal at 1:15:00 with a dream of 1:10:00.

Old friends = big smiles

 

OK, I may love the Mini in theory, but I hated it today and I still hate the 10K distance. I noted the latter when re-reading last year’s recap, but I thought that was probably a thought coming from being undertrained. Nope. Running it as part of a longer run or even a training run? Fine. A race? No thanks.

Rewinding.

Rachel and I worked together in the first half of my time at NYC & Company and she’s been an invaluable help as I try to figure out this whole running thing. We were messaging this week and realized the stars might align for pre and post-race meetups.  I’m so glad we did this photo pre-race as I don’t think I was smiling this much after.

I had a whole bunch of nerves leading up to today, and I had no idea why. They weren’t based in anything identifiable. I think they were part of what lead to an extra snooze or two. Despite a later start than I wanted, the trains cooperated and I was in my corral by 7:30.  It’s weird starting outside the park, but I loved listening to the starts of the professional wheelchair & elite race(s) before the corrals started to go off. This was slightly odd too in that rather than corrals collapsing and a general rolling start, each moved up to the start and then started as a group.

The first mile felt weird. I felt oddly wiped, and my Achilles were achy. I realized why on the former when I saw my watch at mile one. 10:12 (watch), 10:15 (Strava) was way too fast. I didn’t actually feel like I was running that quickly though, and I realized it was warmer than I expected. Although I was dreading the Harlem Hills, miles two and three were pretty decent and I was pleasantly surprised by the West Side rollers not being terrible “in reverse” and even the evil hill behind Lasker Rink didn’t seem as evil as I remembered it. I actually ran a pretty solid if unspectacular 33:30 5K.

As I said on Strava, though, I ran a good 5K and then I hit a wall.

I’m not sure if that wall’s name was heat/humidity, sun, hills or disorientation. I think it was a little bit of all

  • the weather was swinging wildly all week, both day to day and in its predictions for today. By yesterday morning it had changed from rain to partly cloudy. By the time this morning dawned, it was full sun and while seasonable for June, we’ve had a relatively unseasonable spring so it was a quick transition to summer, and I haven’t run in heat since Fort Lauderdale, last Saturday’s jog to the gym notwithstanding. I had water in my belt, and stopped at all aid stations, but I was definitely thirstier than I’d liked. Time to recalibrate my water breaks to the right amount of fluid for summer, and probably switch to carrying Propel. And as was the case last year, I was oh so grateful for sprinklers at the last two water stations and at the finish. As much as I don’t like Gatorade, I mixed a dash of it with the water at the finish line to get something besides water into me. I had a brief flare of the “goose bumps” that hit me during Squirrel Stampede, but I was able to run through them
  • Disorientation is probably the wrong word, but I have muscle memory for the turns and landmarks when running counter-clockwise in Central Park. That doesn’t work so well in reverse. Apparently I should run in this direction more than once a year.  Once I got through the Harlem Hills I was expecting Fred and Cat Hill to come much more quickly and once I got through Cat Hill I thought the bottom of the Park would come more quickly. I think part of the latter was that I was just done.

During mile six I’d pretty much decided I wasn’t going to run Queens. The 800m to go signs were not helping, nor was the peekaboo view of the finish when I knew I still needed to round the bottom of the park, and it was taking all I had in me not to walk it in.  And of course the finish is atop a (small) hill. There’s no rational reason for this. I can do 10K, it’s just brutal in a race when the mind wants to be done at 5 miles. Time for some mental training to go with the physical? It doesn’t help that three of the four 10K races I’ve done were in warmer weather than I’d like, I’m sure.

chilling out, literally, post-race

Debriefing with Rachel at Naumberg Bandshell was helpful as was running through the aforementioned sprinkler. The race didn’t (just) suck because I haven’t trained on hills in five months. The heat was a thing. If a way more experienced runner can struggle, it’s OK that I did too. And I know what I need to do to make it suck less. Go back to Mile High Run Club and hit the Hills instead of doing my favorite 15K loop that avoids them. Alas, I don’t think that will happen before the next run that features them-surprisingly for a 5M. And yes, I’m absolutely running Queens next weekend. Haven’t decided whether I’m actually going to do the NYC Half next year, but I’m so close to 4/6 that I want the guaranteed entry in case I do run it.

NYRR Finish Data
NYRR 10Ks

And although I hit a wall, my second 5K wasn’t terrible at 37m. It’s a sixteen minute course PR and I nearly hit my dream goal despite running 30 seconds per mile slower than last weekend’s race. So I’m happy, despite not being satisfied if that makes any sense?

SparklySoul race prep

Speaking of the aforementioned next run featuring the hills, SparklySoul was at the post-race festival and a little retail therapy goes a long way. In the clearance bin I found this, which will be perfect the Pride race. I don’t always run in headbands, but sometimes you just must. The festival had a meet & greet with Desiree Linden, and if I ever did a runfession, I’d say that I had no interest in standing on that line. She’s amazing, a force of nature, but there was no way I’d come up with an interesting thing to say and the line was just too long. I’m sure they’ll be an NYRR Run Center opportunity.

2017 and 2018

I didn’t have it in me to run home so I walked, and by the time I got to some shade near Conservatory Water I was a little more smiley than the finish, and maybe a hair more mature than last year? Err, the sprinkler might say otherwise.

Training This Week:

remarkably close to what I laid out last week. Higher mileage than recently due to Saturday race following a Sunday one. I have come to like Saturday races giving me Sunday to sleep in. Linking up with Wendy and HoHo as per usual.

  • Monday, I was a little sore so I decided rather than cross train I’d just stretch well at the gym and walk home.
  • Tuesday, escaped on time for a Central Park run. Calves were whingy, so I didn’t push it and had a good stretch after.
  • Wednesday, #GlobalRunningDay. So much fun. I did one of NYRR’s happy hours and I didn’t lose the group! We did the bridle path, which I’d somehow never run before. I love it and will absolutely be doing it again. So zen! I was a bouncing fool at the end and got to chatting to some fun folks. Dana was the coach and while I doubt I could actually do Tempo Tuesdays, I liked her style. Maybe in the fall. Also learned, butt kicks and high knees make for a fun and silly warm up, way better than aerobics which I cannot do. Also cool, Team for Kids ambassador Molly Huddle was at the Run Center just before all the runs headed out.
  • Thursday, wanted to run before a morning meeting but I overslept and just got in a quick 20m run. I love how morning runs make me feel and wish I could convince myself to do them more often
  • Friday, complete rest day. I went to the beach with a book or three after work. Hit my step goal, but that was it.
  • Saturday, the 10K. I didn’t run to or from the race as I wasn’t feeling it before hand and it was too hot after.

Total Mileage: 20.3 and I hit 300 on the year.

Plan for Week:

(aka, why I need to get back on a training plan)

  • Monday, run of undetermined length
  • Tuesday/Wednesday -off, most likely, due to work
  • Thursday, run of undetermined length
  • Friday, short shakeout or cross train as I really don’t want to run three days a in a row
  • Saturday, Queens 10K

Don’t chase waterfalls, PRs are much more fun

don’t ask me why I have TLC’s Waterfalls in my head. I can’t remember the last time I heard it, and it isn’t on my playlists so who knows?!

This is a two week recap due to travel but before I get to the nitty gritty, I GOT MY 5K PR! (Yes, all caps and bold very much needed 🙂 ) Part of a crazy week of cramming runs between conference sessions. More on that later.

The Brooklyn Half is five days away. EEK! I’m not as ready as I wanted to be, but I’m more ready than I was for Lebow, so I think it will be OK. So far forecast looks cool and rainy. Not ideal for post-race beach day, but better than what I feared when we had 80s two weeks ago. I’m simultaneously looking forward to it, glad to be dropping down to shorter distances for June and looking for another half, so go figure on all of that.

For these recaps, joining Wendy and HoHo as I’ve really come to love the folks I’ve met through that linkup

Theme of both weeks? Cramming. Way too much going on and I knew when I signed up for both a conference and the Brooklyn Half at the end of January that it wasn’t ideal, but I’d figure it out.

Week of 4.29

  • Monday, I wasn’t sure how my legs were going to feel after Saturday so plan was warmup, and row. They felt good and I went with 5.6, 5.7, back to 5.6 and then my now-standard 6.2 closeout for 2.03 total.
  • Tuesday, Carl Schurz Park/John Finley Walk I love/hate you. Great to have something so close, even if chopped up but going back at least a year, my times here such. I’m not sure if it’s due to the terrain, elevation or what but even pre construction it has never been great. But I only had a quick window available so I took advantage of it for another 2.03.
  • Friday was a nice post-flight shakeout for 2.03 miles (5.7 for 1.88, then 6.2 close). I’m so glad the fitness center at the hotel was so well-equipped as it was way too hot to even contemplate running outdoors. Some folks managed morning runs, but I couldn’t get a good loop map, so opted to stay indoors.
  • Saturday, not a run and didn’t even hit my step goal thanks to a 7 hour RT bus ride, but nothing better than Mother Nature at her finest. Grand Canyon was pure magic. More on that and the conference in another post.

Low mileage week overall, but it was what I needed and I ran where I could. I was OK with this.

Week of 5.6

  • Sunday, I wanted to get in 10K but there simply wasn’t a large enough window between conference sessions. Most of the week I was up early as I tried to stay on east coast time, but we got in really late from the Grand Canyon and I slept in. Happy to still get in 4 miles. I stayed at 5.6 as even in the AC, it was brutal. Dry heat is still heat and I was drinking a lot of water last week. My first dry heat running and a learning experience
5K PRapalooza
  • Monday, PR day! I didn’t break 32, but I realized when I loaded the run into Runkeeper that 32:15 was for 3.08 and not 3.13 so PR! I decided to try to see if I could do 5.7 all the way through and if that was enough to get me a PR. 5.7 felt good and I had a large water bottle which was enough to keep me from having to pause to refill. Surprisingly I had enough in the tank at 2.88 to gut out 6.2 for the last quarter mile and I have a new PR. So I’m further from breaking 32, but I’m still going to make that happen. Recent speeds and the incremental progress to Monday make me think that could happen in June, but I’m just not sure enough how treadmill speeds will translate outdoors so we’ll see? But in the mean time, I’m happy.
  • Wednesday. Cram in a short run before the day’s sessions because I wasn’t sure I’d have shower access after field trips in the afternoon since I’d have already checked out of my room. This was a good move as not only did I not have shower access, but I doubled up on field trips and didn’t have a window for a run before heading to the redeye.
  • Friday, ugh. I realized my weekend long runs would be rained out (at mom’s, no gym access) so decided to keep on with the theme of the prior two weeks and squeeze a run in an available window. It wasn’t the run I wanted, but it would have to do.
  • Sunday, hotel gym had only one treadmill and it is still manual. So elliptical and a walk again for the sake of steps. Stir crazy!

Am I going to regret the lack of any long runs the last two weeks? I’m not sure.  But plan for this week is running today and tomorrow, or today and Wednesday and then off Thursday, Friday ahead of the Half.

Here’s to a good run.

 

Training, week of 4.16

This was a weird week.

Monday I went to the gym figuring I might have something in my legs despite going two days in a row since Saturday’s run was way below where it should have been. Nope. Couldn’t even get .05 miles so I took a cross train day and did a mile on the elliptical and 2K row. Not ideal, but it worked. I was subsequently off from the gym on Tuesday and Wednesday due to evening commitments. Tuesday was completely off at sub 8K steps as it was too cold to walk home. I am so over winter.

Thursday I was antsy and curious how my legs would respond after Monday. They felt fresh and good. I briefly went PR chasing, but ended up having fun with numbers, despite Strava recording issues.  I went at 5.6 until 2.63 where I went to 5.7 before my habitual 6.2 flying sprint to close out. I don’t think I’m quite at 5.7 for length, but I’m getting there. I really need to get back to Mile High Run Club and speed sessions. The knee is fine, I’m just afraid of it not being fine ahead of Brooklyn.

Sakura on Pilgrim Hill. One of my favorite crosscultural spots

 

Strava must have been mad at me for yelling at it, because Saturday was a complete tech fail despite the beautiful weather. The plan called for ~9-10 and the run started well, but I was struggling on the West Side Rollers between miles one and two. I just felt gassed. I already knew as I came around the bottom of the Park that 9 wasn’t happening and I think Cat Hill was worse because I had already decided it was going to be. My left achilles was twinging and I felt itchy, although I didn’t know why at first.  (Anyone want a handful of mint chocolate Gu? It clearly doesn’t like me. The first time I thought I was having a heat reaction, but twice? Nope, something in it & I don’t get along. So I dipped out of the park at ~5 and got to six miles by headed home. It wasn’t the run I wanted, but it felt decent. I got home and no matter what, the run wouldn’t sync. Some googling tells me this is an occasional thing with the TomTom wherein it clears off the watch because the watch thinks it’s transferred, but never makes it to the app. Oh well. No splits, but at least I had the overall.

Cherry Blossoms on the Hudson

The plan for today was to make up yesterday’s missing miles. I didn’t have an exact plan, but knew I ultimately needed to get to Pier 97 so I decided to take the M79 across and run north for a mile to make it a ~three mile run. I got this wonderful sight at about the turnaround. So many shades of pink and white like the first time I did the Great Saunter. It’s just nature’s canvas. Other than Frozen Penguin, I never really run Riverside, so this was a nice treat.

lickity split!

Although it was busy, it wasn’t crowded so I wasn’t playing too big a game of dodg’em and my legs had some speed in them. After mile two, I thought I might be chasing a PR.  I missed it by 30 seconds, but was still wowed by this run especially coming off six yesterday. And those splits! Almost my first fully negative splits. I don’t think breaking 30 is going to happen in June like I hoped,  but I’m going to break 32m if it kills me. 32:15 is my PR and I think I’m getting there. What surprised me the most about this run was it was about the 5.6 I ran Thursday but without a treadmill forcing it. It just felt right.

one eyed, one horned, flying purple people-eater!

How to keep people from running too close? Look like this. The reason I needed to get to Pier 97 was for Holi, put on by a group we’re working with. I’d never been before, but really enjoyed it. From there I caught the bus to the southwest corner of Central Park and decided to run home as it was getting slightly chilly. Although I didn’t have much phone battery left, I wanted to get some cherry blossoms so I headed off in the general direction of Cherry Hill.

Central Park was packed and this was very much a game of dodg’em, so I knew this woudn’t be for time. At Conservatory Water, I took a break and went up Pilgrim Hill for some of my favorite blossoms. So magically sun-kissed.As my phone died there, I nipped home to try and lose some of the purple. Ended up with six miles, when I only meant three catch up. Although yesterday wasn’t the long run it was meant to be, I got more miles in, since if I’d done 9 I wouldn’t have run today, so win? It’s a good thing I didn’t much like that shirt anyway, it’s never coming clean.

Overall, mixed bag but I’m happy with these two long-ish run days to close out the week. Definitely happy with two back to back at distance even if Sunday’s miles were in three parts. I’m not 100% sure I’m ready for Brooklyn especially with travel ahead of it, but I feel good. Plan for next Saturday is Mile High’s outdoor long run, so we’ll see.  Tomorrow is definitely an off day and as soon as I hit post, I’m having some QT with my foam roller as my quads are cranky. ETA Monday morning: not too sore, other than knees going downstairs. Foam magic

Linking up with Wendy at her invitation and HoHo, whose blog looks amazing. And for the readers, Wendy posted her review of Deena Kastor’s book. That was supposed to happen this week for me, but Running the Smoke cut the queue in honor of today’s London marathon, so I’m behind.

Runners High meets #NYRRGridiron

Can you have a 48 hour runners’ high? That seems to be where this is going. This is also super long so TL;DR: I “raced” my first race today, and it was AH-MA-ZING!

Rewinding…

This was a(nother) weird week.

After Saturdays runs, I walked and went to the gym to use the bike on Sunday but then I took Monday and Tuesday off. I’d planned to go to the gym on Tuesday but I was at work way too late and wasn’t feeling it. I knew it wouldn’t be a good workout, so I went home.

I got to visit my graffiti!

Wednesday brought my tradition, of sorts. Ryan’s High45 at Mile High Run Club. We celebrated my finishing the Half and he asked my plan for the class. My knee was still a little tender so I wore my brace and said I’d take it on the easy side. He said he wouldn’t call it a “come back” if I wouldn’t.  I walked some of the active recovery windows and definitely slow jogged the others, but I took some of the flying sprints at 7.0 and that felt good. I iced it when I got home, but otherwise my knee felt good. I was so glad I got to see my piece of art, as by time class had ended she’s cleaned the wall of the 2018 Resolutions. I look forward to what Team MHRC runs and membership will bring as I really like the folks at NoMAD on Wednesday nights and Sunday mornings.

I had after work plans on Thursday, so missed the gym but knew I’d go Friday. I was feeling good about the workout. Even though I’d needed to walk some of the active recovery windows on Wednesday I felt that my level 2, aka my usual pace, could move up so when I got to Blink, I hopped on the treadmill at 5.6 and off I went. At some point I looked at Runkeeper and saw what a 5K PR would be. So at minute 31 I cranked it up to 7.0, and subsequently realized that the problem wasn’t with running so much as math. Although I didn’t PR, it felt really good.

Running time machine. Feb 2, 2018 v. Feb 4, 2017

As I stretched after running, I had a scroll back through my Runkeeper to find out what the hell that PR was (this craziness with NYRR, so this is definitely a treadmill PR and longer distance) and because I thought early February was when I’d first run a full three miles. Indeed.

Other than chasing treadmill PRs, I really hadn’t had the chance to see running growth due to the frigid weather and running longer/new distances. I didn’t really have an exact plan for the Gridiron 4M because I was waiting to see how I was feeling after the Half, but now one was formulating. When I ran the 5M in late October I nearly got a mile “free” and I decided that was my goal for today. I wanted to either beat the run from the previous Feb 4, or my time  for the Boomer Esiason four miler, my only prior 4M with NYRR.

I took Saturday “off” and just did some errands. I was worn after a lot of late nights this week and needed some me time. I commented in one of the Run the Year sub Facebook groups that I was I was “surprisingly” more nervous about the four miler than I had been about the Half. I finally put it together when laying out flat me. It’s the first race where I  set a time goal (well 2).

I do a lot of reading about running, books and blogs and the use of the word “racing” always gave me pause. I didn’t really understand the difference between running a race and racing a race for non-elite athletes. I think I got it. And a stomach full of butterflies. I guess I was “racing” the Gridiron. I was nervous though, I’d only kept up that pace on a treadmill and I wasn’t sure I could do it in “the wild”

Flat Cari!

Speaking of Flat Cari, the “level up” to K before the Half was not a mistake, and shockingly I didn’t lose it after my pace during the Half. When I went to pick up my shirt and number for today I asked about that and the NYRR staff said it’s based on best pace in last window, converted to a 10K, not average pace. So I may hang onto it for the year. Some of yesterday’s errands include the NYG tee, pictured. Yes, I was violating “nothing new on race day”, but since it was atop two well worn layers I didn’t anticipate an issue (and it was fine).

And yes, I finally figured out how to attach the bib to the belt so I didn’t have to do shorts on leggings thing. Rest of flat Cari: black TekGear with thumbholes, good because I forgot my gloves, Ted Corbitt race shirt, which I love (don’t like today’s at all, it’s white). August shoes which are about out of mileage 😮 and spiderweb tights. Neck is the turtle fur muff I love. Was meant to try GU Chews, but they didn’t happen so I went without fuel.

morning dawned cold
but I was well layered

Starting at E. 102nd made it easier to get there, but I much prefer to hit Cat Hill on fresh legs. I didn’t exactly have a strategy for “racing” this so when we crossed the start, I just ran my race.

but did I run TomTom’s or Runkeeper’s?

Those splits are nuts for the first mile. While I’d love to claim TomTom’s, I’m pretty sure Runkeeper’s is more accurate based on the early crowds and what I saw of the clock at mile one. I could not figure out why this four miler felt so hard until I saw these splits. I’d maintained “that pace” (10:54) without the control of the treadmill.

Mile 3 includes Cat HIll and I’m impressed I kept it under 11 as that also included walking through a water station due to crowds. Beyond this, I don’t have any particular thoughts on today’s run. I felt as if I was zig zagging a lot more, maybe because I was in thick of pack through finish? I loved the run left or right on Bethesda to “vote” for which team would win tonight.

Done! DIdn’t know my splits, but I knew what watch said and thought I had a PR

The reason I chose the Lebow hat vs. one of my handmade ones was that I expected to ditch it when I got warm. While I took it off at mile 2-3, I held it and I was glad because I got cold going home. I was also so cold/tired I forgot to flamingo.

So how did it go?

vs. Feb 4, 2017: buy three miles, get one free!

 

vs Boomer Esiason, April 1, 2017
NYRR data. Officially on Team MHRC

WOW!
WOW!

I was on a runners’ high from how good Friday night felt, and then I was definitely on a runners’ high once I got home and saw this. While I can’t say that I trained for the four miler specifically, it’s clear that running and training has paid off. That’s even forty seconds per mile faster than the 5M at the end of October.

I’m really excited about what I’ve learned my body can do. I think I’m going to spend the weeks of 2/26 and 3/4 working on speed because I’m definitely going to “race” the Frozen Penguin. A PR isn’t a goal there, as it was my very first run and a brutal day, but I may set a time goal TBD. Why those weeks vs now?

Well based on the runners’ high from the Half, I signed up for another. It’s actually one I’ve been thinking of for some time as I knew I’d be away, but didn’t want to commit in case I hated Lebow. Luckily it didn’t sell out before I could. So here’s my calendar for the next few months:

  • February 19 – Fort Lauderdale Half Marathon. “Pancake flat” and on the beach. I’m also kind of nerdliy excited to go to my first Expo. Hoping fewer hills, less painful recovery. Hotel has a pool so I think that will help with post run stretching. Am I any more trained for this than Lebow? Not particularly, but I can do the distance. So maybe it will be another Half benchmark for one without insane hills
  • March 11 – Frozen Penguin 5K. More on this TK as I think it through
  • April 8 – Cherry Blossom 10M in DC.  I treated this week’s runs as week one of training so I’m only a week behind. Determined to be properly trained for this one and, knock wood, I think I will be.
  • May 19 – Brooklyn Half. That just happened this week. Ends at the Coney Island Boardwalk! That’s literally all I know about this one, so need to do some homework. Never run in Brooklyn before.

ETA: Just became aware of Deb Runs’ race link up. Love this idea. Always fun to have folks to say hi to before or after races

On to the next

Training, week of 1.7

meet my new best friend

I already talked about how I marked my one year running anniversary. How did I mark the first half of the week after my running anniversary? Injured.

I actually don’t think it was Saturday’s 7.77 miles so much as the 1.3 mile warmup on Friday in bad shoes. Luckily, it doesn’t appear to be a flare of plantar fasciitis, but rather a bruise/irritation of pad below my big toe. So rather than take a class as planned on Sunday morning, I visited my old friend the bike as the gym’s rowers are out of commission. Walking to and from gym bus stop was sore, but not insurmountable. I honestly didn’t even want to go out as it was so cold, but I needed some steps.

On Monday I went to my primary branch and while my foot felt better, I didn’t want to push it too soon so I checked out the contraption pictured above which they’d recently installed. It’s an Octane Fitness Lateral and it seemed more manageable than a standard elliptical. It was surprisingly fun, especially with legs going all around. Since it didn’t have the tread pounding of a treadmill, my foot felt good after 30m which was about enough for my hips.

Tuesday, planned off day.

Wednesday, tested my foot with a mile on the treadmill followed by a mile on the lateral. It’s hard, but a good hard and way more fun than the standard elliptical. Maybe I’ll give their bike a go on the next non-Sunday cross train as the gym also has that.

Thursday, late night with multiple after work events but I didn’t use them as an excuse to skip the gym. It meant a short visit, however, so it was only a mile. No pain. Yay.

Friday I knew was going to be a test. After an insanely cold two weeks, it was finally unseasonably warm and Road Runners had scheduled one of their #ResolveToRun group runs. Despite struggling with NYRR’s group runs, I decided to give this one a go since it was only 5K and was geared toward new runners, it seemed.  There were eleven of us including two coaches and as we head into the park I knew it wasn’t really new runners. Just figured I’d give it my best.

We had a pause at about the mile moment to allow the rear group to catch up and set a plan for the distance and when I looked at my watch I couldn’t believe it. It was 10:07! I knew there was no way I could maintain it and told them to go ahead, I knew the loop and would catch up or meet them back at the RunCenter. The second mile I managed to keep them in sight and for the third mile another runner said she’d run with me and three of us finished together. Just before we hit two miles it started to rain and it was AWESOME. It had been super foggy in the park and as we skirted Belvedere and the Delacorte it was super eerie. Loved it.

It was a great run and ten of us finished smiling in the rain. The planned hot chocolate at the RunCenter gave way to water and gatorade and when I looked at my watch, I couldn’t believe it.

holy PR Batman!

Even when accounting for the distance, not just a PR, a PR by ~20 seconds per mile vs. Christmas Eve! And CP course is way more hilly than the trail at home which is a pancake.

12/24/17 vs. 1/12/18

Speaking of per mile, this just makes me shake my head

 

drunk splits

How on earth does the same run get measured at three different paces? Tom Tom is faster on first and slower on second miles than Strava. It’s six seconds faster than Runkeeper in mile one before moving to four seconds slower. None of this makes one iota of sense.

Also at the RunCenter

Hat & new corral

Either they dropped the L corral for this race, or I actually leveled up. My guess is the former, but I’m going to enjoy this sign of progress.

Today, 3.21 at the gym at 5.5 with random hill intervals mostly to test the foot. No pain. Run felt good. Definitely taking tomorrow easy though and not running. I’ve learned to not repeat this summer and determined not to be both undertrained and injured.

Speaking of learned, you might notice I revised my 2018 goals and dropped the “need” come in with fewer days below goal than 2017. It’s not because I’m struggling, but rather because it was making me crazy already. The whole reason I love (and main point of) the annual aspect of #GoTheDist (which did come back for 2018, yay!) and monthly aspect of my spreadsheets is because they control for the day to day fluctuations that come with life. I do need to make some minimal movement-such as last Sunday when I went to the gym, but I don’t need to obsess about whether coming in shy of goal (~10K Tuesday because I got home after midnight) means the end of the world, goal wise. It’s a similar feeling to when I dropped the 30m goal, and it’s something that has been lingering in my brain as to whether my fitbit would ever “let” me have a true rest day. So lesson learned early from a goal. I think this falls under 2018 goal of train smarter. And since the day I made that decision? Four days above 15K, of course.

December 2017: Struggling

(I was originally writing this over the course of a week to post on 1/1, but I decided there was enough meat that would drown out a year-end recap).

When I came back from the Christmas long weekend, I knew I was in trouble goal wise. As has become custom, when I start the month’s spreadsheet I plug in some 2K step days where I know I won’t hit goal. For December these were:

  • December 10, the day after my 15K
  • December 17-18, day before and day of major work event
  • December 23-26, at mom’s for Christmas

What I forgot about was that the entire week before the major work event can be a disaster because it wasn’t last year. As early as December 11, I knew there was an issue and I subsequently hit goal only two days that week. Uh oh.

Part of me thought I’d be OK since my 2K days don’t tend to stay 2K days since I started running but Saturday 12/23 was rainy, cold and miserable, and Christmas Day was too busy.

Still holding a 2K day in reserve for some family stuff, I was facing needing four 16K days to get ten months in a row of 400K. That was a tall order. Would the world end if I didn’t get it? No. Especially since I hit both 5m on the year and 1.25m for the quarter, but I really wanted it. Alas, I didn’t want it enough to get off the couch and go to the gym when I got home on 12/26. So we’ll see

TomTom, Runkeeper and Strava mostly in sync for a PR

There were some good things over the Christmas long weekend. My Christmas Eve run was a present from the Ghost of Running Present, a PR on the South Nyack Trail. The PR itself was 1m9 seconds over the same trail three months prior (and yes, I finally just ran the first lap twice!) and an eight second PR over November 18. I love that RunKeeper makes it so easy to ID and find the similar runs.

Comparing 5K PRs

That progress makes me think it is possible that I’ll break 30m for a 5K by December 31, 2018. Even ignoring the really early ones, I’ve taken nearly 5m off my 5K time since June. Baby steps.

It was also a Festivus miracle in that it was relatively accurate across TomTom, Strava and RunKeeper! Speaking of Strava nonsense, I love that #7 on the NYRR/Strava virtual race tips is to run extra because Strava is a muppet when it comes to rounding. (I might do their virtual ones, still thinking about it).

My first day back to reality and my routine was a good treadmill run. I didn’t have a planned distance since my training is off and I don’t want to overdo it and risk injury, but I was thinking about an hour.

Runkeeper meets What the Forecast

Yep. Lungs wise I could have gone longer but my legs were starting to hurt and I was understretched having been away and hadn’t run longer in a while, so I smartly cut it there. Legs felt good after a good stretch and foam roll.

Thursday’s cross train (29m row, 31m walk) was also “about an hour”. Who am I and what happened to the person who didn’t want to spend the better part of an hour running? 😀

Can I pull out 400K? It’s still a definite maybe, but I’ll give it my best.

Other Notes:

  • I recently read Mile by Mile’s post on the magic of the long run and it’s so true. Although I love Mile High Run Club and don’t really mind running 5-6 miles on the treadmill at the gym, there’s no magic the way there is in an outdoor long run. I think part of why I’m struggling in December is I haven’t got outdoors nearly enough. Combo of being sick early in the month, getting dark early and the weather. It’s not going to happen this weekend either, but hopefully before my January run. In the mean time, some treadmill tips. I really wish I could read. I have been getting in my Iron Chef fix though when there isn’t football on.
  • I love the idea of Mind, Body and Spirit goals. I need to think about spirit, but I think I have mind and body covered. Not having the scale as part of my body goals, is partly a mind one as it’s just frustrating and nowhere near as measurable as running progress goals.
  • Fuel-school. I have stuck with gels when I’ve used them, but I found this guide to the various fuels super helpful. One day I’ll even remember to use them consistently. I think part of the struggles in my learning week was running on empty. I can do it, but probably not smart when I’m also mentally exhausted.

Training Workouts

So this is the first time I’m actually following a training plan. Or trying. As with everything I’ve done throughout this running journey, it’s a hybrid. I overthought it and consulted three plans. I know that the ones that have more than three-four days are not for me as my body needs that rest day. I also think there’s something to the 3plus2 theory in Run Less, Run Faster, even if that ultimately isn’t for me right now.

RunKeeper ended up running a promo for Go and with that came the ability to set a custom plan, and that’s where I landed. How am I following it? Well, I’m trying. I think I’m doing pretty well.

The Good:

  • my base long run is longer than their start so I feel like I’m maybe starting in week 3. I’m less concerned about not being worried
  • I feel like the weekday workouts are doable, time wise and it progresses at a rate I can keep up with
  • I’m enjoying it

Needs work:

  • treadmill endurance, aka boredom
  • endurance with intervals/hills
Tuesday 11/7
Thursday, 11/9

Two of this week’s workouts, although there’s a little more than meets the eye

  • Tuesday was in three due to a combination of watch/biological breaks. Intervals in 3 sets: 5.3/5.8 for 1.5 miles, same for .75. Then 5.2/6.0 in .25s for 2.1 miles. That’s what Strava said but there’s some missing mileage that Runkeeper/TomTom had.
  • Today was deliberately split in two because I knew I couldn’t maintain the speed intervals over 4.5 miles without a break. I smelled a PR on the 5K (more on that later) so went hard for that while switching between 5.2 and 6.0. After a break to stretch and mentally kick my ass, I switched to hills for the final 1.37 miles.

So what did the first workout look like?

PR! 21 seconds
Pace over time

I smelled it early, but then I wasn’t sure I was going to make it so I took the last .23 miles at 6.2 which was hard. But I did it. Love looking at my pace over time. That blip? Of course that’s the Damon Runyon Yankee Stadium 5K that I turned into a fun run. I’d say I have nowhere to go but up with that one, but not sure I’d do it again.

I actually contemplated calling the workout at 5K and decided to use the stretch break to think about it. I could rationalize it – 3miles is all Higdon’s plan called for and I did have the two miles from Sunday in the bank. But as I stretched, I felt like I could finish this. There’s no rule that prescribed 4.5 miles had to be in one go, so I went back out there.

Two halves of the workout

The hills, aka treadmill on random, were good. Hard but not bad, which seemed about right. One thing I’m going to have to figure out is balancing long runs on the weekend with trying to work in the Harlem Hills, which I haven’t done since that day. The time change has made post-work outdoor runs an impossibility so all but the weekend will be on treadmill.  Definitely need to find a better source of distraction. It looks, however, that 4.5-5.0 is longest weeknight run on this plan, and I know I can do that even if it has a mid run break at the moment to stretch. While “faster” is a good thing, my main concern is the long runs and getting those up. I’d rather finish more slowly than DNF.

Other:

  • NYCRuns opened up the Frozen Penguin 2018 and I’m in! Almost certain to be my first race back on the same course since I have yet to run in Riverside Park again and curious to see my year on year progress. Hope the shirt is as cute as I need a new one.
  • Gels experimentation continues. These two were without caffeine since workouts don’t start until 6:30-7. The apple cinnamon didn’t sit well and tasted a little too sweet. The Clif vanilla was delicious and sat fine. Look forward to trying vanilla/orange this weekend
Vanilla is good. Apple cinnamon, not so much

On to the next