I can’t believe that I’m 3 weeks away from race day of the Des Moines Half Marathon. I still have one (really long) long run before it’s Taper Time. Now is a great time to reflect on what has been going really, REALLY right this training (consistency, for starters) and really, REALLY wrong (ugh, the weather). I had a great conversation tonight with my coach, and I definitely feel stronger as a runner. I also love the accountability and growth that a partnership with a coach has brought me.

One area that I haven’t quite figured out this training cycle is my nutrition — I am literally all over the place in terms of eating habits and what fuels me on runs; some days things seem to click, and other days I feel like complete crap. I ran my 10-mile race on my usual breakfast and felt amazing — but that definitely was not my same experience doing my 12-miler run this week (though, I did run later in the afternoon). It’s all part of the practice, though (not perfect, but better).

My workouts got flipped around a little bit this week, since I needed to take my rest day on Thursday — date night! — my runs felt really good midweek, but I was TIRED for my strength workout by Friday, pumped up again by Saturday morning (I was up SUPER early) and then all motivation was lost again by Sunday.

WEEK AT A GLANCE:

  • 2 easy runs
  • 1 long run
  • 1 tempo run
  • 1 (marathon) yoga session
  • 1 strength workout + 1 core workout

MONDAY
Rest Day and a good amount of foam rolling before bed.

TUESDAY
5 miles at an easy pace + core workout

54:47, 10:57 average pace

WEDNESDAY
Tempo run — 1 mile at slower-than-easy pace, then 3 miles at a 10k pace, followed by 1 mile at my easy pace. For my training this cycle, I’m learning all about finding my different effort levels — rather than running solely on pace. And this run was a lesson in finding some of those different gears. It was interesting to see how much effort I had left while I was running those 3 middle miles. I know that effort won’t always feel the same from day-to-day, but it aids in boosting my confidence when I get caught up in breathing heavy and sweating and feeling like I can’t maintain a pace… or feel like I’m doing to die.

Splits: 11:24 / 10:25 / 9:06 / 8:35 / 11:26

THURSDAY
Rest day

FRIDAY
Strength day – definitely felt weird to do strength on a Friday night, but I didn’t have any plans after work, so I just jumped right into it when I got home. I added jump rope as a warm-up to my regular strength workout a couple weeks ago to work on some flexibility, stability, and single-leg strength and balance. And I felt TIRED before the workout even started. It felt like I was doing the movements for the first time in weeks. This 30-something was in bed by 9pm ON A FRIDAY. #nowine

namasday-lifetime-des-moines-yoga-sun-salutations

Something other than a treadmill pic. ?

SATURDAY
Woke up super early, so I could participate in the Namasday celebration at LifeTime in Des Moines: 108 sun salutations at sunrise, poolside, and in celebration of the fall equinox. It was a beautiful morning — they even had a ukulele player! — and the practice really helped me focus and find balance in a hectic week. For the first time ever, I found yoga to be meditative, and I did majority of the sets with my eyes closed.

Coming down from that peacefulness, I did my 30-minute easy run on the treadmill at LifeTime, ending with a few sets of strides. It was difficult to do my strides at the gym, as it was slow to increase speed; my treadmill at home is a lot more responsive.

32:40, 11:07 average pace

SUNDAY
The 12-mile run that I did NOT want to do. I woke up at 7am with a splitting headache (which is still lingering today), and a run just wasn’t how I wanted to start my day. So I pushed it to do later, after I felt like I finished laundry and some housekeeping. I battled myself at every mile — trying to talk myself out of doing the entire run. But I did the entire run. I feel tired and sore – I guess exactly how I should feel having run a 25-mile week! (I don’t often feel sore, so I’m chalking this one up to doing yoga on Saturday).

Splits: 11:36 (1) / 11:38 (2) / 11:27 (3) / 11:19 (4) / 11:19 (5) / 11:27 (6) / 11:30 (7) / 11:43 (8) / 11:16 (9) / 11:34 (10) / 10:59 (11) / 9:39 (12)

There might be an epsom salt bath in my future. Like, now.

WEEKLY RUNS: 4
WEEKLY MILES: 25 miles (!!!)
TOTAL TRAINING MILES: 156.76 miles

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