Back to the nitty-gritty of the training posts, so Salty figured we should put this on the front page and catch everyone up on my shenanigans. And yes when I say nitty-gritty, I mean it: things are most definitely getting gritty. This was week three of a heavy push, but I knew I just had to make it through this third week to get to my step-back week. Continuing to feel strong but exhausted; the exhausted, however, isn’t one of overtraining. It’s a heavy workload to be sure, but so far, I seem to be fueling it well.
Saturday, May 30: 24 miles on a hot, soupy day. I’ve been “allowing” myself to wear shorts on my long run day and my longest day of hill repeats; for this one, I wore lightweight running shorts with a thick half-zip long-sleeve shirt. I ran a quick three miles with DB and our normal Saturday group before looping back to meet George, who had done a century ride the day before. By 11 miles, I was soaked through as if I’d just gotten out of the pool and had sweat dripping down my legs to boot. Stopped at the house to change and chug Coke, and it was a real mental struggle to get back out. DB was returning from finishing his run, which made it that much harder. I fired up the iPod, grabbed a pineapple popsicle and got my butt back out there. It was ugly for the next three miles, but I ended up bumping into my friend Tom with eight miles to go, which was an absolute savior. This was definitely a tough, ugly day, although the average pace of 9:12 for the run didn’t reflect it too badly.
A brief afternoon nap was all I needed to snap back – that and a little Mick Jagger. The Stones concert was the perfect recipe for recovery, and I can only hope that I’m as happy running Badwater as he looked to be on stage. Ended the day with a midnight pizza party and imitations of Jagger-dancing.
Sunday, May 31: Early morning wake-up call for a girl who usually goes to bed around 9 pm. It was my turn to host coffee hour at our 9 am church service, and I had to go directly to the sauna from there since DB had a volunteering gig later in the afternoon. This was the day I was due to kick the sauna sessions from 45 minutes to 50 minutes, which is the longest I’ll go in. Followed that (finally!) with an hour’s nap. A rare afternoon coffee to wake up, followed by a 10-mile uphill workout on the treadmill as follows:
- .5 mile warm-up at 11:30 pace, gradually increasing incline to 7.0
- 1 mile at 11:30 pace, incline 7.0
- .5 mile at 11:30 pace, incline 7.5
- .5 mile at 11:30 pace, incline 8.0
- 1 mile at 18:10 pace (walking), incline 10
- Repeated the 3-mile sequence three times, followed by a .5 mile downhill cool-down
By the time this workout was done, I was dripping so much sweat that I actually had to clean the treadmill BELT. So I guess the whole sauna thing is working, because I’ve definitely become more “efficient” at the whole sweating thing. Clothing for this workout was shorts and a long-sleeve half-zip; normally I would have done pants and jacket, but I was nervous because I had done the sauna before the workout instead of after.
Monday, June 1: GOOD MORNING, CALVES!!! No pain, but they definitely had a few things to say. Normally I would do a 2-hour heat spin on Monday, but I had forgotten that my gym had switched to its summer schedule of only one class per night. I took a pass as I needed to catch up on some work and household matters, so stuck to a single hour’s heat spin this time. Super-productive work-day!
Tuesday, June 2: 8 early morning miles with my running group, followed by a 50-minute sauna session. Good fun as we walked in on the remnants of my niece’s last day of school sleepover. One hour of uphill walking and four hours of work, followed by 5 miles of 1/2 mile hill repeats in the evening. I had myself talked into a flat course, but then thought: Towne Pass! Father Crowley! and thought better of it.
Wednesday, June 3: 12 miles of morning hill repeats. I am lucky to live in a neighborhood with a hill; i.e., if I run from a street called High up to a street called Indianola, I can get in a one mile hill with a considerable grade. The catch is, I can do this on any one of about 10 streets that run parallel but have varying “pitches” to their climbs: Glenmont, Blenheim, Northridge, Acton, Chatham, Fallis, Arden, Breevort, etc. On this particular workout, I’ve been taking the uphills comfortably (9 – 9:15 pace) and pushing the downhills hard to try to prepare for the steep descents on the course. Followed this fun bit of running with a 50-minute sauna session. Worked from 10 am – 4 pm, packed for my Thursday trip and ended the day with an hour of uphill walking in the evening.
Thursday, June 4: Traveled to Whistler, B.C. in the morning and was stunned by the drive from Vancouver. It was so gorgeous I really couldn’t wait to run. Except I was tired – and hungry – and travel weary. DB came out on the very hilly Whistler trails with me for 6, then I ran another 4 for a total 10 miles for the day. Followed that with an hour of uphill walking in the hotel gym; packing all these extra hooded sweatshirts and pants for workouts on the road takes up a lot of suitcase space.
Friday, June 5: Another 10 miles on the Whistler trails, followed by a 50-minute sauna session at the hotel. YES! The hotel had a sauna, and it was actually decently hot. Although I don’t know how hot, because no one at the front desk knew. And there was no temperature gauge or thermometer. I’m guessing it was 160 – 170 degrees; regardless, it did the trick. I was due for another hour of uphill walking as well, but work obligations intervened. It was likely just as well; this was the last day before my low-mileage week started, and I was carrying severe fatigue in my legs. I won’t lie, I didn’t bat an eye when I had to cancel that session.
Weekly totals: 79 miles running, 9 miles walking, four 50-minute sauna sessions, 1 hour of (hot) spinning