Basil’s Training Log – Christmas “Vacation” 12.29.2013

I truly enjoy when my kids have time off from school for the holidays. And I truly enjoy training for a marathon. The combination of the two events, however, is not quite as fun to juggle. The sub-zero temps and the 24/7 parenting pretty much nixed any hope of an outdoor run. So I continued to bond with my trusty treadmill during my last 50+ mileage week before the marathon. All that quality time with my treadmill got me thinking that I need to give it a name beyond the typical “Dreadmill” or “Preen Machine”, something more personal. I must have had Seinfeld reruns on the brain (Happy Festivus!) because I kept coming back to names like George or Kramer or Newman. The lone non-Seinfeld name I came up with was Fitz. Not a big leap to see where that idea came from! Anyway, here are the details on how my treadmill and I spent our time this week:

Monday – 10 miles averaging 8:13. Started out with a 2.5 mile warm up and a great phone conversation with a friend before attempting 4x1200m intervals at 6:53 pace. First one felt good. Second one was interrupted by my son who needed help with a malfunctioning toy. Managed to utter a request for “please just 3 more minutes!”, finished the 1200m and then used my recovery time to help him fix it. On the third one, felt ok, but was interrupted by husband texting questions about whether to get the bulk bag of avocados at Costco. Used the next recovery time to text back that we didn’t have any parties in the next 6 days and no one loves guac THAT much. Final set felt good and as a bonus there were no distractions!

Tuesday – 11 miles averaging 8:37. Nothing special, just getting the miles in on the mill.

Wednesday (Christmas!) – easy 4. On the treadmill of course. Because we enjoyed a high of -5. We were planning on taking the kids outside to use their new ice skates, but naaaah, we just stayed cozy by the fire and enjoyed the precious gift of warmth!

Thursday – 7 miles averaging 8:34. This was an anticipation 7 miler with 6x100m strides. For the record, strides on the treadmill are not so great. Hard to mess with the speed buttons and still stride naturally. And forget about floating.

Friday – 20 miles averaging 8:34. Cranked out 20 miles on the treadmill before the sun came up! (Granted, the sun doesn’t come up here until 10, but still….) Got up at 5:30, hit the preen machine by 6. Tried to simulate the hills on the Carlsbad course with 1% incline at miles 1, 6 and 8, and 3% at mile 9. Ran the rest of it at 0. Was also going for negative splits, which I got, given all the “hills” in the first 10 miles. First half was 1:28 (8:48 avg). Second 10 miles was 1:23:30 (8:21 avg). For the last 4 miles I continued to slowly increase my speed. The very last mile I just kept upping the pace until I finished at a 7:13 pace. I think the last mile was probably somewhere around 7:35. I’m happy with how I felt and what I was able to do. Not sure it translates into meeting my marathon goal, but I’m feeling more and more ready to tackle the beast!

Total – 52 miles. And three more weeks until go-time!

So will you guys help me answer this super important question as to what to name my treadmill? George, Kramer, Newman or Fitz? (I’m kind of leaning toward Newman, just so I can say it like Jerry (Newman!) when I want to blame the treadmill for all my problems.

Recovering corporate hamster-wheeler turned Alaskan hausfrau, mother of two and running enthusiast. Kind of a June Cleaver in tempo shorts...minus the makeup and vacuum. Will run to great lengths to get a moment of peace.

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