September 16, 2011

Chicago Week Seven


It looks like this is actually going to be my peak week of training for this cycle (so much for maxing out at 55 miles, ha!), but I'm quite proud of myself as this is also the highest weekly mileage I've done, ever. Not all the runs were great, but managed to get them done even with a busy work schedule and an end-of-summer heat wave. Chicago is now just a month away which means one more big week then taper!! 


run: 4 mi, 8:51 avg pace.
Made the run quicker than the recovery pace called for to make it to work in time! 

run: 8 mi, 8:42 avg pace.
While much of the country seems to be welcoming fall with cooler temps, this wasn't the case in Sacramento. When I left for my run around 5pm, it was still 98 degrees and humid...not ideal for running, let alone speedwork. I actually felt pretty good during the 4.5ish miles to the track, but then things got ugly fast. I'll say upfront that I wasn't well hydrated, and the air quality and temps were not very healthy for running, and undoubtedly both are responsible for my workout leaving me drained.  I had 5x600m at 5k pace (~7:30/mi) on deck and after the first one, I was wiped. I stopped to rest after every repeat, and could feel myself slow significantly after each one. I almost threw in the towel but managed to get through it, then did a slow cool-down job to my aunt's house in the area where I had dinner plans. I literally stumbled in the door and downed two entire water bottles. It took a good 20 minutes for me to feel better, but I could feel the after effects the rest of the night. It was a big mistake not bringing water with me (I usually do), and I probably should have avoided running in that weather period. Amazingly enough, looking at my stats I realized I actually was under my goal pace for each interval. Crazy, since I felt like I was running through mud. It also further proves how much I suck at pacing ; ) Here are the numbers:
2:30 (6:48/mi)
2:32 (6:52/mi)
2:39 (7:11/mi)
2:38 (7:09/mi)
2:43 (7:21/mi)

run: 10 mi, 9:17 avg pace.
After a killer workout the night before leaving me dehydrated and exhausted, I was a little nervous about my 10 mile medium-long run to work this morning. As soon as I got moving I knew immediately something was wrong. A nagging pain in my groin was forcing me to alter my stride significantly. I hoped that once I warmed up it would get better, but a few miles in I was a little worried. I tried stretching, but with little relief. I had a hunch it was related to my glute/hamstring, and actually first felt it getting tight after my speed workout the night before. As a result, I was forced to move along at a slower pace than usual. Fortunately, around mile 5 it started to feel a tad better and I could run without a normal gait, allowing me to pick up the pace for the final half of the run. Since then I haven't experienced any issues with my groin, but it's definitely something I'm going to keep an eye on.

run: 9 mi, 9:32 avg pace.
I had the day off so I opted to sleep in and do my run later that evening. It was another warm evening so I didn't get started til pretty late and it was soon dark. The plan called for a new kind of run - a "tune-up race" of 9-13 miles with 8-10k at marathon goal pace. From the start I was feeling good, but by the second mile, even though my effort hadn't changed, my Garmin was showing a much slower pace. On the third mile I picked it up even more, to the point of tempo effort, only to see my pace slower than expected again. I know perceived effort can sometimes be biased, but I also know I was running faster than my watch was telling me, but I kept trying to push harder to see that damn number go down. The frustrating thing was that the whole point of this workout was to practice goal pace, but thanks to my watch I had no idea what I was really running. I ended up finishing the run feeling like it was a hard effort, but without the pace to show for it. 


run: 17 mi, 9:17 avg pace.
I honestly wasn't sure how this one was going to play out. I had to work an event (Luna Bar all-women's triathlon) from 6am-3pm, forcing me to do my long run later in the day. After an early wake-up and a long day at the race, I really was dreading the run and would've much rather taken a nap. But somehow I managed to drag my butt out there around 5:30 and thankfully it had cooled off by then. I decided to try out a new part of the bike trail that I'd never run before, mainly because it's more trail than paved bike path. It was a nice change of pace and actually fun to go off-road. I got turned around a couple times but ended up with just over 6 miles when I found myself back where I started. I decided to add on an out-and-back on the opposite side of the river. On my way back I even spotted 7 deer! The final leg of the run was on one of my usual loops, but it was quite dark by then and I was eager to be done. My pace hovered in a decent range for the majority of the run, and I allowed myself to take short stretching and fueling breaks at the water fountains. I was absolutely exhausted when I finished, but so glad I got out there and did it. And I sure slept well that night!

While it's not exactly running related, I did want to touch on the 10 year anniversary of the attacks on 9/11. It's hard to believe so much time has passed since tragedy struck for so many Americans, but as with most things, time helps to heal. It was heartwarming, however, to see so much of the country come together in remembrance of all those lost on that day. I think for most, it was also a day for reflection. America may have it's faults, but I still think we're pretty lucky to call this country home.
remember, reflect.
run - 48 miles

1 comment:

  1. 7 deer! that is soooo cool. keep up the hard work, it will pay big dividends.