Poppy’s training log – month of April

Well crap and a half, I’ve gotten behind on log updates again. The last log I posted was right after I ran the Scranton 1/2 Marathon on April 2nd in a less than healthy state. My goal race for April was a track 10k at Bucknell, which was two weeks after that half. So I took the first few weeks of the month to make sure I was recovered both from the half and from the month-long upper respiratory sickness I was dealing with (as was the rest of my family). The track 10k was ok, but not great. The best words to describe it would be “a grind”. I missed my track PR (from my senior year of college 17 years ago) by one silly second. The morning after the track 10k, which was held on a Friday night, the whole family drove up to Boston to spectate the marathon as the hubs and I had several athletes running. A week later I ran another local-ish half marathon (St. Luke’s in Allentown, PA). It was the third year in a row that I ran this race and once again, it was a really fun experience. Everyone involved with the race is super friendly and supportive and an added bonus was nice racing weather (mid 40s and sunny). After the half I took an easy week before bouncing back into training with the goal of a few shorter races in May to finish up my spring racing segment. Below is my training for the past month.:

week of 4.3-4.9.17

Monday: slow and easy solo 4 miles to recover from the 1/2 the day before.

Tuesday: 4 in the morning w/ the kids in the double, 4 solo in the afternoon.

Wednesday: 5 in the morning w/ the kids in the double via 2.5 miles to gymnastics class and 2.5 miles back home 45 minutes later, 8 solo miles in the afternoon.

Thursday: 7 solo miles in the morning.

Friday: 14 miles w/ workout. Plan was 4-5 x broken 2ks via 1200 @ 4:18, 200 @ 50-60, 600 @ 2:06, 2:00-3:00 jog recovery. It was windy and a bit rainy on this. I felt good for the first three and then started to feel a little tired on the fourth (residual fatigue from the half?  from the chest cold?). I thought I was ok to do a fifth, but I came around the first 400, after battling a pretty strong headwind on the backstretch, in 87 and it felt hard. So I stopped and jogged around for a bit. Then I decided I needed to suck it up and try again. Made a deal with myself that if I came through slow again and/or felt horrendous doing it, I would call the workout. As it turns out, I felt better on the second attempt of rep #5 so I was able to see it all the way through.

7:11 via 4:16.72/49.65/2:05.25
7:13 via 4:17.22/50.25/2:04.87
7:10 via 4:15.68/49.36/2:05.17
7:13 via 4:16.46/50.78/2:05.49
87 for a 400
(another 51r)
7:16 via 4:17.62/51.75/2:06.50

Saturday: 6 miles in the morning w/ E in the single, 4 solo miles in the evening that ended at a nearby playground to join the hubs and kids.

Sunday: 6 miles in the morning w/ E in the single, 4 solo miles in the evening (just like yesterday).

66 miles for the week

week of 4.10-4.16.17

Monday: 11 miles with workout (last one before the track 10k). Plan was 1 x 1600 via 90/88/86/84 [ easy lap ], 4-6 x 600 via 86/41 [ slow 200 jog between ] and an optional 1 x 1200 @ 86 per lap. “Only do this if you did a full 6 x 600 and finished the 600s feeling like they were all pretty easy. Go into workout assuming you will not be doing this 1200.” This was ok. The 1600 felt good, but the 600s were just so-so. I was fine running the 86 first 400, but my legs were feeling pretty heavy and sluggish when I tried to pick it up over the final 200. Given that, I decided not to do the optional 1200 and instead put those three laps at 86 towards my 25 laps of racing on Friday night. I will say that given how I felt in this workout I was a little worried that I was not fully recovered from the combo of my never-ending cold and the half marathon two weeks before. I took the next few days very easy heading into Friday night’s race.

5:46.99 [via roughly 89,89, 85, 83]
2:06.30 (72r)
2:06.38 (71r)
2:05.42 (69r)
2:07.63 (70r)
2:06.93 (72r)

Tuesday: 4 solo miles in the morning, 4 miles w/ E in the single in the afternoon.

Wednesday: 4 miles in the morning w/ the kids in the double via 2 miles to/2 miles from gymnastics class, 4 miles in the afternoon w/ E in the single.

Thursday: 5 solo miles in the morning.

Friday: 2 mile shakeout in the morning, then I waited about twelve hours before I ran again to warm up for my track race.  12 miles in the evening with a 10k on the track.  I ended up running a pretty even split of 18:01 first 5k and 17:59 second 5k to finish in 36:00.98 in 8th place. I had hoped to run around 35:30-35:45, but my body didn’t quite have it on this night. I felt decent through 5k, but then I was on my own and as I said above, I felt like I was just grinding out the laps the rest of the way. I kept my head in the game the whole time and when I knew I was going to be close to my track PR (my road 10k PR is acutally 18 seconds faster than my track PR), I put every last ounce of myself into my final 400, which I ran in 79-80 after clicking off 86s and 87s most of the race. I tried so hard to push myself to get across the line under 36, but no dice. I felt quite ill afterwards, so I knew I ran as hard as I could have. I was happy to have another opportunity to compete at this meet with the young whippersnapper college kids. This really is a great event and we once again had perfect weather to race under the lights (mid 50s and no wind).

Saturday: SLOOOOOOOOW 4 miles in the morning before getting in the car and driving six hours up to Boston.

Sunday: 6 miles in the morning in Lincoln, MA. Ran some of those miles on the trails in Lincoln Woods, an awesome place to run, 4 miles later in the day along the Charles River in Boston.

60 miles for the week

week of 4.17-4.23.17

Monday: 12 miles in the morning just before the start of the Boston Marathon. Ran reverse some of the course and a few laps on the Boston College Reservoir. Ended the run at the 25k mark of the marathon course to cheer on my friends who were running the marathon. After spectating, we made the six hour drive back home.

They were more interested in balloon animals and the nearby playground than watching the marathon.

Tuesday: 6 mile family run in the morning (hubs pushed the double the whole way), 4 miles w/ E in the single in afternoon.

Wednesday: 4 solo miles in the morning, 6 miles in the afternoon w/ E in the single.

Thursday: 13 miles with light workout. Plan was 3 x 1600 @ 6:00-6:05 pace w/ easy lap jog – “if things feel good and pace coming easily options below: 2nd repeat pick up last 400 meters (10k effort), 3rd repeat pick up last 800 meters (10k effort)”. Ended up having to do this on the indoor track as the outdoor track was in use by the football team. It was pretty hot and steamy inside and I was glad this was a short workout.  Felt good.

5:58.51 (2:03r)
5:50.13 [4:26/84] (1:57r)
5:43.75 [2:57/2:46]

Friday: 6 solo miles in the morning, 4 miles w/ E in the single in the afternoon.

Saturday: 6 solo miles.

Sunday: 19 miles w/ a 1/2 marathon race.  Finished 1st female in 1:19:36.  This is the fastest half I’ve run in the past two years and it was on the slowest course. I was happy to get under 1:20 again like I did at Scranton. I was also happy and very grateful to be racing feeling 100% healthy, which was a change from the previous two races. For the most part I felt strong, but I could definitely tell that 10k from eight days before was still lingering in my legs a little. This race was a blast and I enjoyed getting to see some Allentown area running friends, including my buddy Edann.

Post-race awards at the St. Luke’s half marathon. Photo credit Edann Etters.

78 miles for the week

week of 4.23-4.30.17

Most of this week focused on recovering from the previous few weeks of racing and deciding what races to do over the next 4-6 weeks before shutting it down for a mini downtime.

Monday: 6 miles w/ the kids in the double via running to preschool w/ E so we could pick up C and then running home w/ both of them.

Tuesday: 6 miles in the morning w/ the kids in the double, 4 miles w/ E in the afternoon.

Wednesday: 6 mile family run in the morning (hubs pushing the double the whole way), 6 miles w/ E in the single in the afternoon.

Thursday: 10 miles w/ the kids in the double, three of these miles were solo laps of the track while the kids played on the infield.

Friday: 6 mile family run in the morning (hubs doing double pushing duty again), 4 miles solo in afternoon.

Saturday: 14 miles w/ workout.  Plan was 4.5 tempo (did this on the track so it was really a 7.2k tempo) via 615-20 x2 6-605×2, fast last half, 2xmile off on 200s. Recovery as needed, full recovery. Did this late in the morning when it was pretty warm and humid. I slept in late b/c I was up late painting our kitchen ceiling (long story). Woke up sore everywhere in my upper body and was not feeling super motivated to workout. Once I got going though I was fine. Had to stop and stretch my biceps and pecs at one point in the middle of the workout, but my legs felt good.

7.2k tempo in 27:12 [6:04 avg] via 6:16.90, 6:13.38, 5:59.17, 5:57.77, 2:44.70 [~83/81]
(4:41 r – easy 800 + bicep and pec stretch)
1600 on/offs:
39.18/46.25 [5:50]
(2:07r – 400)
38.94/45.94 [5:50]

After I got done we took the kids to the town Arts Festival. Among the things we did was go to a mini petting zoo, which my kids absolutely loved. I was wiped out by the end of this day.

Sunday: 8 easy solo miles.

70 miles for the week

I'm a licensed massage therapist with a background in biochemistry and also a mother of two. After almost two years of focusing on shorter race distances, I am back on the marathon training horse. My next goal race is the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. I write mostly about health and science as they relate to running as well as being part of a running family.

Leave a Reply to Poppy Cancel reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


    1. Ha, thanks. I sometimes like to put not obvious pics in for my featured image. Also, thanks for reading all the way through that novel to get to said payoff.

    1. Thanks. Me too. I think the last time I had illness linger in my body that long was when I had mono my senior year of high school. I of course was nervous about that, but thankfully finally got better after a month.