Through 2 weeks of training for the Hamilton Marathon.  This week was tough, but in some ways not as difficult as last week.  I don’t think that the workouts were easier, rather I had a week of training under my belt and not just starting.

Sept 23, 2013 – 16k Tempo

Based on what I learned last week I set a goal of 4:20/km for my tempo this week.  I knew from last week that this was going to hurt, but I was looking forward to seeing my first signs of improvement.  I ran from home this week so I knew I’d have a tougher route.  I was running an 8k out and back, but I’d have a hill to deal with for most of km 13.  I felt good running, it was hard, but it’s supposed to be.  My pace slipped just after 10.5k and I didn’t average below 4:20/km until my final kilometer.  Before this run I secretly hoped that it was just rust last week and I’d crush 4:15 km’s, but that wasn’t in the cards.  I finished in 1:09:36 or 4:21/km.

September 25, 2013 – 6 x 1600hard, 400m easy

Kind of like a track workout, but I was going to run it on the road.  I was hoping for all of my repeats to be sub6:20, but I was running in a hilly area so there were a lot of variables.  My first interval I went out way too hard.  A lot of it was uphill, but I kept pushing and finished it in 6:15.  Great for that one interval, but the next ones suffered.  The 400m between intervals flew by and I was running again in no time.  I rattled off 6:32, 6:49, 6:20, 6:38, and 6:29 in my next 5 intervals.  This wasn’t track work, there was terrain to deal with (as is evident by my up and down times) and I should have been more disciplined in my first interval.  Lesson learned.  I did have to stop between my 4th and 5th to massage my IT band, but there were no lingering effects after the run.

September 26, 2013 – 3 x 800, 1200, 1600

This was a track workout I made up on my own.  I read that my intervals should all be 1km+, but I like 800′s so I decided I’d start each set with one, I find they help me get my foot-speed up.  My goal was to run 1:30/lap (400m) or better.  Mentally I knew these would be more difficult to do. I don’t have a lot of experience running intervals on the track over 800m, and the 1600m at the end of each set would loom over me.  Mindy showed up to do her own track workout, and Ross was in the stands watching us as we went.  Familiar faces always help during a hard workout.  The workout went well, I met my goal, all my intervals were 1:30/lap or better (but I did push that to the limit for my final 1200 and 1600).  I liked this workout and I will do it again, maybe have a little more structure in my rest intervals next time.

Sept 28, 2013 – 32k long run

Today I had planned on doing a 27k long run, but opted to do 32k because it meant company.  We started out with a group, and Steve, Glenn, Nicole and I completed the whole thing.  Long runs are always tough for me because I do them so infrequently.  From 16-19k we did a tempo section.  Again, I planned on long and slow for the entire run, but this was nice to break up some of the monotony.  After that it really started to get difficult for me though.  Once I get into the mid 20′s I can feel my legs breaking down and they were completed trashed by the time we got back to ARF.  Steve had done was water drop the night before, so we were able to refill bottles 3 times, which was great.  I ran with a fuel belt, which I never do, to carry fluids.  It wasn’t as uncomfortable as I remember, though I’d still rather not have to use it.  But I know I need to stay hydrated on these run.  Outside of the 3k tempo I was at a pace that I could hold a conversation the entire time, but it was my legs that help me back from running an extra 5k with Glenn.  After the run I noticed a huge blister on my left big toe (I’ll spare you the pictures), beside that I’m no worse for wear.

* Since this week went well I’m going to go ahead and commit to running the Hamilton Marathon.  At the time of writing I haven’t officially signed up, but I will once I find where I put my wallet.