Hi, everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend?
First things first: who saw Star Wars: Force Awakens? No spoilers, but we saw it on Friday night and of course we loved it. J.J. Abrams surpassed expectations and I want my own BB-8 droid.
(If you haven’t already, don’t forget to enter my coaching giveaway! One reader will win a customized training plan!)
This week initiated my training for the Lake Sammamish Half Marathon, which is the first week of March. Even though it was only the first week and the workouts were rather laidback, I am always please with myself when any week of training goes as planned.
I also spent the last week cultivating content for my email subscribers. If you haven’t already, sign up to receive weekly emails featuring exclusive training tips and workouts! New subscribers will also receive a base building guide for runners with tips and workouts to make the most of your off season, so be sure to sign up so you don’t miss out (you can sign up using the forms on the home page).
I’ve been working with Heather from FitAspire over the past few weeks in her Marketing Academy for Endurance Athletes and have learned so much new information about marketing. I’m very excited to implement new aspects to the blog, such as email exclusives and more! If you are a running coach or other fitness professional, I highly recommend Heather’s month-long seminar to help you grow your business. Click here to view more details about how to sign up for January Marketing Academy for Endurance Runners (affiliate link).
Lake Sammamish Half Marathon Training: Week 1
Monday: 8 miles with 10 x 1 minute hard (3K-5K effort), 1 minute easy fartlek
After months of easy running with only a few fartlek workouts and progression runs thrown in, my mind and body are not adapted to the physiological sensation of running fast. I ran out for four miles, added in fartleks during the second half, and cooled down during the final mile. The first five hard efforts burned my lungs, but my body adjusted for the last five. I estimated I ran a 6:45-7:05/mile pace for each interval based on effort, but then I checked the actual data from my Garmin and found I actually averaged a 6:35-6:55/mile pace.
Tuesday: AM: 7 miles easy, 9:09/mile, PM: 25 minute kettlebell workout + planks
After yesterday’s fartlek workout, I maintained an easy pace for this run. I set out planning to do 5-7 miles and I felt good, so I ran the full 7. Mileage ranges on easy days keep me from feeling too stressed about training and help me tune into my body’s signals. Often, during Hansons training to the Portland Marathon, I’d stress about getting in the full easy 8 miles when I mentally and physically felt fatigued. I’d rather go longer on my hard runs and keep my easy runs under an hour.
Wednesday: AM: 8 miles with the last 2 miles at a moderate pace; PM: 25 minute Pilates workouts
Wednesday’s run was another progression run, as I’ve ran in previous weeks. After six easy miles at an 8:30-8:40/mile pace, I increased my effort and ran the last 2 miles in 7:22 and 7:31, respectively. That 7:22 felt surprisingly comfortable, considering 7:26/mile was my 10K pace over the summer. All of this base building must have improved my aerobic capacity. The sun also peeked out here and there this week, which made for several beautiful sunrise runs.
What better time to start on a 2016 goal than now? Lisa mentioned Pilatesology a couple weeks ago, so I found some of their videos on YouTube to try. I throughly enjoyed these workouts: the faster pace and slight variations in the moves were rejuvenating for my mind and challenging for my body. I did a 15 minute intermediate mat workout and a 10 minute magic circle (toning ring) workout.
Thursday: AM: 5 miles easy on a hilly course, 9:08/mile + 5 x 8 second hill sprints; PM: 15 minutes kettlebell strength workout
Thursdays are always the hardest day of running for me, in terms of motivation and fatigue, so I keep my miles on these days short. There’s only one loop by my apartment that’s removed enough from traffic to safely run along, but I usually avoid it because it’s so hilly (1/2 mile uphill straight) and the high volume of school buses and commuters in the mornings makes me anxious when it stays dark until 8 AM. But, hills are part of my training plan, so I waited until a couple hours after breakfast to run 5 easy miles and 5 hill sprints in the rain.
Let’s just say this whole day lacked motivation: I slowly slogged through work and distracted myself by checking analytics and social media every five minutes, and I seriously contemplated snuggling with Charlie instead of going with Ryan to the gym to strength train. That is where discipline and habit matter, though, because I got my work done and did the same kettlebell workout as on Tuesday.
Friday: 9 mile progression run with last 20 minutes at a moderate pace, 8:22/mile average pace.
This could have been a bad run, but I have decided that bad runs are just a matter of perspective (unless, you know, I fall and break something), so I took the good and the bad of this run and enjoyed it. The bad: I forget my SPIBelt so I had to shove my iPhone in a back pocket and felt it hitting me the entire run, I had gotten only six hours of sleep, there was a strong gust that changed directions shortly after I did, and I overdressed. But, really, can these small inconveniences actually dampen the joy of running? No, so despite all this, I still enjoyed the run!
Surprisingly, the progression part of the run still went well. I increased my effort to slightly easier than tempo partway through mile 6 and sustained it for the remainder of the run. The last three miles clocked in at 7:55, 7:31, and 7:23. All those 7:20’s are building my confidence and making me excited for what this training cycle has to offer.
Saturday: 8 mile hike, 3150 foot elevation gain
Ryan and I left bright and early on Saturday morning to hike Mount Si, which is a popular trail in North Bend, WA and is only an hour from Seattle. Mount Si attracts numerous hikers, novice and experienced alike, so we decided to wait until the winter off-season. We left Charlie at home, since we were unsure of how snowy this steep trail would be with its significant elevation gain. This trail was steep, and the surface progressed from a soft trail to slush to snow to deep snow (5-6 inches on the trail, 18+ inches everywhere else). This trail was the steepest hike we’ve done in a while, which made it a fun challenge and a great workout. The views were stunning: we could see Seattle and Bellevue in one direction and far into the Cascades in another direction.
Run: 37 miles | Hike 8 miles | 3 supplemental workouts
Sunday: Rest Day
Since we’re visiting Saint Louis for Christmas, we celebrated our own little Christmas today.
Have you tried any new-to-you workouts recently?
What are your plans for Christmas?
Did you see Star Wars?