run pretty run fast

a blog about running fast with style

Weeks and Weeks in Review (again): It’s the final countdown…

Always playing catch-up, hopefully this one won’t be too painful (ha… I don’t believe it either).  2 peak weeks, 3 taper and a race.  Yes kids there was a race.

Ready, begin!

March (yikes!) 31- April 6

Monday rest, surprising no one.  Since the plan was a peak week I bumped Tuesday to 9 so that’s sort of surprising?

Wednesday I had to work late so I had to skip the group and run a 5 + 2 tempo/flow workout on my own (that’s 7 for those of you counting).  Goal pace was 7:05-7 for 5 and then 6:37 for the final 2.  Did I plan on running 7:05?  Not really.  I was hoping to be just under 7:00 and with the first few laps on the track and the next mile down hill it wasn’t too hard.

6:54 and 6:55.  Not bad.

And then I have no idea what happened.  I was running the GL and my Garmin likes to cut out and I know it likes to cut out but when if flashes 7:15 pace I feel like I had to pick it up and then before ya know it you run a 6:51 and then you really wish the workout was over.  3 miles is good enough right?

I debated this question for the next 2 miles (6:54 & 6:56) and then realized I needed to pick it up.

Is this supposed to feel this hard?

Mile 6, 6:28 and more hard (bad grammar, bad).  6 plus minutes to go right?  Not ashamed to admit I must have looked at my watch 30 times hoping to see that 6.XX roll over to 7.00.

6 minutes and 23 seconds later it did.

I was done, like ready to walk my 3 mile cool down back to the office done.  Maybe I’ll see someone I know on my cool down and they’ll give me a ride?

One can only dream.

Thursday was an ugly 4, Friday 8 and Saturday back at the track for a lap or two… or more.

Saturday’s workout called for 4.5 miles at “flow” pace with a fast 1.5 to finish (6 miles for those of you who struggle with running math like I do).  No one in my pace group showed-up so my coach told me to run with the fast kids as long as possible.  The fast kids were running 6:45 and since 6:55s about killed me on Wednesday I was less than excited.  I tried my best to negotiate another workout but I must have been off my game… here we go, maybe I’ll just see them at the finish.

Per norm we started with a lap around the track and then hit the GL.  If you guessed mile 1 was fast you clearly have been reading this blog for too long… but surprising everyone the fast kids went out a littles slow, maybe they know something I don’t know: 6:47.

Now if you were worried we were off pace, no need to panic, we made it up in the next mile: 6:43.  Since I wasn’t totally falling apart at this point I figured I’d hang on for a few more miles: 6:42, 6:45.

The fast kids could feel the fast miles coming and picked up the last half mile before the kick.  Wait is this a race?

Ugh, it sure felt like it.  My Garmin was off from the groups so I went with their count finishing the last 1.5 in under 6:10 pace which was a complete surprise and proof that running with people clearly makes a difference.

I finished the workout feeling good and ready to call it a day, but I was running with the fast kids and you know what that means… extra credit.  Back at the track I somehow found myself running with the group that I think was working on form… still not sure but I jumped in and somehow convinced my coach that I used to be an 800m runner.

Sunday was an easy (hilly) 20 (I know back to back 20 miler weeks, yikes!) but it felt good so can’t complain.

1 week down… 4 to go

Mileage: 65.9 miles (thanks Strava)

April 7-13

So good news, peak week lands on a travel week for work!  Not ideal.  Still kicked off Monday with exactly 0 miles but Tuesday I found myself on the track and my first real track workout since who knows when… maybe February?




The plan was 9 x 800m (2 min recovery) and strict instructions to not over run them from the boss man (it’s like he’s never met before… geez).

Pace goal was 3:04-6 so I of course kicked things off with a 3:00 min 800.  I went out too slow (94) and then clearly overcorrected lap 2.

Rep 2 was the exact opposite going out in 88 and finishing in 3:00 min.

Feeling like I was on the verge of blowing this workout I held back for rep 3 and finished in 3:03.  Better.

4 was a 3:03, 5 a little fast at 3:01 but still not too bad.  There’d been a stiff headwind that was starting to die down so the effort felt the same.

But then PE happened.

I was running this one before work which means the PE class is on the track.  Lucky for me this week was not archery but I might get a tad competitive and might have run my 6th rep in 2:57.

Yep.  Racing the high school kids who were pretty much jogging/walking warm-up laps.  Not my brightest shining moment.

I recovered for rep 2 in 3:02 and then finished the workout with 2 2:59s.  The legs were feeling good and I felt like I could run 2 more reps if need be which is a new feeling for me so a little fast but not bad considering my track record (hehe).

Easy recovery miles Wednesday and Thursday (7 & 9) and my second workout Friday before I left town for the weekend for work.

It was a 6 plus 2 (for 8) and there was nothing magical or amazing about it.  6:59, 6:55, 6:54, 6:53, 6:50, 6:50, 6:20, 6:22.  Miles 5 & 6 were too fast and I paid the price on 7 & 8.  Time was good but it was misery.  Cool down wasn’t much better… so a bit of a fail as far as the over running workout deal but my coach was okay with it.

Saturday I was in SFO up at the crack of dawn and busy all day.  I spent most of the day obsessing over whether I was going to try to get my last 20 miler in on the road.

Reasons why it was a dumb idea:

1) Travel… LR is never easy on traveling legs

2) On my feet all day with work not ideal for LR

3) 2 stupid hard workouts already this week plus points 1 & 2

4) I ran a 20 miler on Sunday so 2 20 milers in a 7 day periods sounds pretty dumb

5) ugh… do I need more reasons?

This blog has pretty much chronicled all the dumb things I do while running so it should come to no surprise that I did in fact run the 20 miler at 4:30PM and it was hands down the best run of the training cycle.

I started from downtown and spent a good 4 miles weaving between tourist on the water (not the best planning).  I made my way over this little bridge and ran across it and back.


I still needed a few miles so I made a trip down to that little baseball park (was only heckled by 6 or 7 drunk Giants fans) and then back to my hotel for a little room service and called it a night.

Sunday we traveled back and I should have taken the day off… but being an expert of doing dumb things I pressed my luck and ran an easy 3 miles.  Spoiler alert… should have skipped those 3.

2 down 3 to go.

Weekly mileage: 63.9

 April 14-20

Monday rest day!  Woot woot… and unfortunately by 6:00PM a sore throat.  Ugh.  Looks like I’ll be starting my taper a week early.

Tuesday 0 miles.

Wednesday no track but 4 easy.  I wasn’t feeling to bad- it was just a cold so I figured a few easy days and back on track Saturday.  Thursday 8, Friday 9… nothing amazing, kept the heart rate low and just tried to get some distance in.

Saturday I was feeling ok, not great but thought I’d try a workout.  My coach took it easy on me with a 22 min tempo (random right?) and 4 x 2 min hills (yep 2 mins).

The plan was 6:40-45s but I was feeling restless and ran this instead:

Screen Shot 2014-06-07 at 7.26.39 PM

Feel free to judge me.  I deserve it.

The 2 minute hills actually felt good so count that as a win?

I was ready to throw down some miles Sunday but the boss man said only 12.  After having him confirm no less than 3 times that he in fact only wanted me to run 12 miles I decided I would run 16 (deep sigh… I know, dumb).  Then I started my run and by mile 6 decided I wasn’t going to make it much past 12 miles so made a good life choice and stuck to 12.

3 down, 2 to go.

Weekly mileage: 46.4

April 21-27

Monday rest day and much-needed coming off this stupid cold.  Tuesday I thought I’d be back to normal but my heart rate had a different plan.  The previous week I was able to run my normal pace with no problem but this week my pace slowed a good 45 seconds on the easy runs.  Guess I’m not over this thing. 4 miles easy in hopes I’d kick this thing soon.

Wednesday was the first of my last 3 hard workouts before the race: 7 miles with 6 at marathon pace (actually a little bit faster than marathon pace), last mile fast (only 20 seconds faster- not too fast).  It was a misty/rain day in the northwest and I had an amazing run.

Screen Shot 2014-06-07 at 7.38.13 PM

Now I should clarify, my coach wanted my marathon pace at 7:05s but I was thinking more 7:15s, while this workout felt okay 7:05s still felt like a stretch for 26.2.

I took Thursday off (shout out to taper) and ran an easy 8 on Friday.  Saturday was the second to last hard workout: 5 at marathon pace (again slightly faster) and the last mile 20 seconds faster.

This one was less amazing… the legs were feeling a bit tight and I was working harder than I should have been:

Screen Shot 2014-06-07 at 7.45.32 PM

I ran this on the same trail I ran on Wednesday and figured out my watch had been a little fast on Wednesday.  For some reason this one was just a struggle.  I was ready to stop at mile 3 but some how willed myself to the end.  Nothing like wanting to quit a your marathon pace workout at mile 3 8 day before your race.

Sunday was my last long run and I was under strict instructions to only run 10 miles, the shortest I’d ever run a week before the race.   My coach had been right up to this point so 10 miles it was… and they were a bit rocky to start.   In general my body just doesn’t seem to like taper everything just tighten’s up.  I probs should not have cut yoga out of my life, lesson learned for next cycle.  It took a good 8 miles to warm-up.

Hay is in the barn though right?

4 down and 1 to go.

Weekly mileage: 42.9

April 28-May 4… aka RACE WEEK!!!!

And sort of boring, but at least there are pictures.

Monday 0 miles, Tuesday 5 easy and Wednesday last workout! 4+ 1 (5- thanks math).  It was a little warm, I still had a nice little hack but for the most part ok.

Screen Shot 2014-06-07 at 8.49.41 PM

Thursday I ran an easy 4 and took Friday off to drive up to Vancouver with these peeps:

photo (2)

The trip was easy and the view from the hotel did no disappoint:


Saturday we were up bright and early for some shakeout miles (4)…



… we picked-up our packets, and lost our car:


… and grabbed some dinner and drank our weight in water.  Then it was off to bed (after a little legs-up the wall).


And Sunday I raced:  26.2.



But that report will have to wait… this is already ridiculously way too long…

Related:  I’m still bad at conclusions…

Weekly mileage:  48.8




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