Last week’s workouts truly felt like training for a spring half marathon. Our weather has been pretty awesome lately. We have had more sunny days (or at least, partly sunny days) than rainy days. It’s still been chilly, but it can be 35 degrees all it wants if that means some sunshine!
From a running perspective, one of the best parts of living in the Eastside of Seattle area is the wide variety of options for running. If you want hills, you don’t have to look far – rollers and steep climbs abound. However, flat and fast are easy to come by with the numerous paved bike/multi-use trails that connect throughout the metro area. My May half marathon is flat, flat, and more flat, but I’ve been trying to hit hills on many of my runs for variety and strength.
Monday: 5 x 5 minutes at 10K pace (8 miles total) & strength training
This run was blissfully chilly and sunny. After my warm-up, I hit the lap button on my Garmin to start the workout… and then looked down at my watch several seconds later to realize I hadn’t changed the type of interval from a recent workout. My watch was programmed for 5 x 5 miles, which is definitely not the workout I wanted to do! I am just glad I caught that only about 30 seconds in, and not much later!
Once I reprogrammed my watch and started the real workout, this run felt very good: I felt smooth in my gait and strong throughout all intervals. My first interval was at a 6:58/mile pace, my middle intervals at 6:54-6:56, and my final at a 6:51.
In the evening, Ryan and I went to the gym to strength train together. Now that he has finished his spring half marathon, he is shifting his focus to building strength and maintaining endurance. I enjoy having company during my strength workouts (versus strength training while he was running on the treadmill). I did three sets of some medicine ball exercises, mini band exercises, and negative pull-ups.
Tuesday: 5 mile easy run
The increase in intensity is reflecting in my easy runs: Ollie and I averaged a 9:22/mile pace on this run. I don’t think Ollie likes it when we run slower on these easy days, although this dog would never say no to a run.
And yes, Ollie has to sit in the car now if I take Instagram photos. Why? Because, as you might be able to see in the background, DUCKS.
Wednesday: 5 mile at half marathon pace (8 miles total) & 30 minutes strength training
Continuous tempo runs provide a good assessment of fitness approaching a race. I averaged a 7:19/mile for the 5 mile tempo run, which is a good progress point for the upcoming half marathon.
I noticed an improvement in my negative pull-ups this week. When I started doing those about a month ago, I had to step up to the top position; this session, I was able to jump up from the bench and use the momentum to raise myself into the top position of the pull-up, and then slowly lower down.
Thursday: Rest day
Seriously, rest days are awesome. Complete rest days motivate me to train harder, because I know I have a day to completely savor rest each week.
Friday: 14 mile long run
The temperature was about 38 and there was a light drizzle of rain, so I dressed for cold rain just in case things got worse. At mile 1, I thought, huh, this isn’t bad, maybe I can drop my rain jacket back off at my car. Fortunately, I didn’t, because it started to SNOW at around mile 6. SNOW! (By 1 PM, it was sunny, naturally.)
I chose a hilly route for this run, which made it physically more challenging but mentally easier, since the miles ticked by quickly thanks to the constant variety.
Saturday: 5 mile easy run
Ryan and I took out both dogs for a short and easy run. Charlie slowed down a bit mid-run, so we all slowed down rather than push him. Honestly, after the long run, the slower pace felt nice.
Sunday: Pilates & Ski day
Before we headed out on the slopes, I did a short Pilates workout. Sunday might have been our final ski day of the season, as it was the final ski day at Summit East. We made the most of the sunny day and ventured onto several blue runs and had such a blast!
How was your week in running?
Do you prefer hilly routes or flat routes?
Are you training for a spring race?