Half Marathon Training Week Recap: New Distances

Looking back at the week in training that was:

  • Saturday was the long run, in some very warm weather for the season.  To avoid mud, I stuck to side-walks so my joints and Achilles tendons took more than the usual amount of pounding, I’d have to say.  I was conservative on the way out, and more aggressive on the way back.  Going slow feels weird because I have a time goal in mind for the race, but I think the structure might be paying off…  14.3km done.
  • We were out late seeing the movie Les Miserables, and Shark Boy didn’t get to bed on time either, so Crossfit on Sunday was sacrificed.  Taking a rest day was probably smart.
  • Monday continued to be mild, but I figured it would be dry enough to run on trails.  Almost right, my shoes got wet (though my Salomon XR Missions have done some good water protection for my feet this season) and at least once I had to wipe a big, heavy clump of mud off the soles.  I hit the prescribed mileage, and the pace was slow as recommended (6:34min/kim)… at least on average.  I think I did some walk breaks and speed bursts to keep that average pace.
  • Tuesday was meant to be a Trifecta Tuesday with an early morning swim, plus strength and 1 more activity that I hadn’t decided on (maybe Yoga), but when I got to the gym, I found the pool crowded, and I had forgotten a towel; I went home and had breakfast with the family instead.  I managed to make it to the Etobicoke Olympium at lunch.  The Olympic (50m) pool had been cut in half for lane swimming, but though there were a lot of people there too, the lane etiquette was roundly observed, and it was no problem getting a good workout in.  In fact, I did my longest pool workout swim with 2.3km including drills, 4x75m intervals, 4x200m and another 4x75m.
  • Wednesday was my favourite run of the week.  The trails were dry and the sun was out.  I managed a 6:04min/km pace, and I began to see how a 2 hour half-marathon might be possible.
  • On Thursday, I did a Cross-training session in a group exercise class.  PB Freakin Fit is run by Personal Best (who manages our corporate gym) and is structured much like a Crossfit Workout of the Day (WOD).  Due to the equipment available and the space used, a lot of modifications need to be made.  This workout was a warm-up of jumping jacks, skipping, jogging on the spot, then a countdown: run across the room and back then do 10 push-ups, repeat with 9, 8, 7 push-ups right down to 1.  The first main set was 5 rounds for time (RFT): 20 Frog Jump Squats, 10 Renegade Rows with Mountain Climber, and 20 Hindu Pushups.  The second set involved AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) in 10 minutes of 20 ski-jumps, 10 burpees with dumbbell shoulder press, and 20 wide-stance prisoner squats. I can still feel the effects as I write this on Sunday.
  • Friday was a tempo run on the treadmill; new distance (2 miles/3.2 km) at a speed of 6.8mph with a 1 mile warm-up and cool down
    • I took a rest day on Saturday, and on Sunday, in spite of freezing temperatures and 48 km/h winds, I got a new distance of 16km or 10 miles.  That’s more than I’ve run in one sitting in at least 3 years.

I took a weigh-in toward the end of the week: 200lbs. Not great progress but heading in the right direction…

This was a week of new frontiers of distance, and I love seeing and feeling the progress.

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