run pretty run fast

a blog about running fast with style

Week in Review: Where’s that brake pedal thing?

January 14-20th

Not gonna lie, I was feeling pretty beat after Sunday’s long run with tempo.  I might not know how many weeks until my marathon but here’s what I do know:  1.) it’s January  2.) my marathon isn’t until May (the end of May) 3.)  and I have lots of running ahead of me.

So while I started this week off happy with previous week I was well aware I might need take my foot off the gas pedal and actually find my real half and full marathon paces.

Monday wasn’t a bad-looking day and kicked off the week well:


Which of course made me happy even though it was still ridiculously cold.


Oh yeah, the running.

As excited as I was last week to discover the that I needed to push myself a little to get the heart rate to 155, this Monday I ignored it since I was so tired (and incase you are wondering it showed in my data… average heart rate was in the low 140s).  I finished my workout with some easy strides dodging morning commuters and patches of ice and hoping my body would thank me for the little break.

Tuesday was a hill day.  5 of them and I was in search of a new hill.  The hill I’d been running wasn’t quite as steep as I’d like and this week called for 3 mins with 1:30 flat and 1:30 fast (5k pace) and I wasn’t going to get three minutes out of the old hill.  I had a long warm-up to find a hill and I thought I knew the prefect hill.  I quickly learned I was wrong and continued my search.

After two more fails attempts to find a new hill I found one and I have to say it was genius.  Yep, I said it.

The first 200m of the “flat” were actually slightly down hill, then 100m of flat and 100m of very slight up hill and then the last part was all up (clearly less than 400m).  My goal was to run the first 1:30 at or just under 6:00m mile pace.  My 5k pace is probably a bit faster but I was trying to easy off the gas this week.  I’d just have to manage 1:30 up a really steep hill.  The last hill workout was 2 mins so this should be easier. (Right?)

Rep 1:  I slightly misjudged the hill and realized I needed to turn left up the really, really steep hill instead of just the steep hill.

Rep 2:  Yep, the steep part of this hill his really steep.  Finish at the green mailbox (always nice to have a marker.

Rep 3: Only two more.

Rep 4: Good lord one more.

Rep 5: Done!  Beautiful sunny day and clear view of Lake Washington!  And I made it past he mailbox!  Boom! Easy cool down and call it a day.

Wednesday 9 miles easy/moderate and the longest mid-week run to date.  I was happy with the pace too (8:11s- not bad post workout).

Thursday I completely failed in the “Charge Your Watch” category of life (and by charge your watch I mean watches).  I didn’t plug my Nike one in and I thought I’d plugged the Garmin but the hair clip I use the secure the charger to the watch (since the hubs stepped on my charger and its missing half the clamp) slipped off leaving my watch charged at 0%.  #doublefail

This meant that instead of exploring a new route I’d have to stick to one I already knew.  6 miles easy, some short hills and I was off to the office.

My legs were actually feeling pretty recovered by this point and my “ease off the gas pedal” week was taking a turn in the right direction.

Until Friday that is when my legs decided to pull the emergency brake on me.

Friday was similar to a workout from two weeks ago where maybe I’d run just a tiny bit fast.  Two weeks ago the plan was 2 x 2 miles at half marathon pace followed by 8 x 200m at 1500m pace.  This week the plan was 2 x 2 miles with the first mile at half marathon pace and the second at 10k pace and finish up with 8 x 200m at 3k pace.

The warm-up did not feel awesome but I know by now I can’t judge a workout by the warm-up but two laps into I knew I was in trouble.  The legs were not feeling it.  My first mile was about 10 seconds fast and my last mile was a bit slow.

Summary 12:32.2 2.02 6:13
1 1:36.5 0.25 6:25
2 1:35.9 0.25 6:23
3 1:33.9 0.25 6:22
4 1:36.5 0.25 6:21
5 3:04.7 0.50 6:08
6 1:31.5 0.26 5:54
7 1:33.1 0.26 6:0

When I came through the finish line I knew I was done but I figured I’d jog my two minutes and give this next one a go.

My first mile was about right but it felt like I was running 90s.  I figured I’d try to pick-up lap 5 and all I could manage was a 94 (not the 92-1 I was looking for).

1 1:40.0 0.25 6:34
2 1:37.0 0.25 6:21
3 1:36.5 0.25 6:21
4 1:37.6 0.25 6:25
5 1:34.8 0.25 6:13

So I stopped.

I knew this run was much harder than it was supposed to be.  My legs felt like they were full of lactic acid (they actually hurt) and I my breathing was out of control.  I walked around for a bit and then decided to just run the last 3 laps.  I needed it more mentally than physically.

1 1:36.3 0.25 6:20
2 1:36.2 0.25 6:23
3 1:34.3 0.25 6:17

They were not easy.

I wasn’t ready to call it a day yet.  I knew I wanted to try these 200m.  I thought I had to run them at 1500m pace (since apparently I don’t read email well) but was relieved to find out they were slower.  I was running this workout with my speedy friend and we decided we’d run around 39-41s (umm… I think that is my 1500m pace- but I was too tired to think through it completely).

We ran them in:  38, 42, 41,40, 40, 41, 40, 39.  And they felt fine, I felt fine.  My legs didn’t hurt and my breathing was a million (an estimate) times better.

Yep, I don’t know what happened.  And I’ve officially decided to not overanalyze it.  I didn’t execute the workout exactly they way I wanted to but still very please with it and lets just leave it at that shall we?


I capped my afternoon off with 4 of these.  Apparently taking one a day doesn’t cut it for me during training.  Lesson learned.

Saturday, glorious Saturday, was a much-needed rest day.

Sunday was the longest run to date (15) and if felt much better than the previous week and I was super excited to have a long run with no pacing.

Still not adding my mileage up… maybe next week?  Maybe next week I’ll also know how many weeks away my marathon is… maybe.

run pretty run fast



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This entry was posted on January 29, 2013 by in Week in Review and tagged , , , , , , , , .
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