Marathon Training Week 11 – You’re Hot and You’re Cold

Hello! Like many of my titles, this one has to do with a song. Name the artist and I’ll be your best friend.

The title also has to do with the weather this week! My track and tempo runs had beautiful, cool mornings to run in and my times certainly reflected that. Unfortunately, my luck ran out when I most needed good weather, for my 20 miler. This was my second 20 miler but it sure didn’t feel like it was. I showed no signs of being used to that distance. I switched to a Sunday Runday instead of the normal Saturday routine and again, the stupid weather. I don’t want to use it as an excuse for my struggles, but it was BAD. I still have one more 20 miler to go before Richmond and that one will be the moment of truth. My paces haven’t been that bad, but I feel like I still need to toughen up in my late miles if I’m going to have what it takes to qualify for Boston. I really don’t have any spare time for rest stops or lollygagging.

Now then, let’s recap my training week.

Monday – Cross-Training

Admittedly, I’ve been slacking on what I wanted to do with my cross-training days. We’ve been playing lots of basketball. I can’t help that it’s fun! I was really enjoying the time spent getting my butt kicked by Cody’s workouts, but work league basketball season is coming and we’re getting ready. My friends/co-workers/teammates Travis and Trevor have gotten themselves into good shape so it’s been fun to play them. We’re optimistic our season is going to be a good one. The basketball probably isn’t what I need to be a better runner though. I plan to get back to it next week.

Track Tuesday – 1000m at 5:47 mile pace, 2000m at 6:04 pace, 2 x 1000m at 5:47 pace (400m jogs in between)

This was a weird workout. I’d have never thought of it if my training plan hadn’t suggested it. I really liked the idea to start with a mid distance track length, follow that up with a long one and then go back to some faster ones. Luckily, I had company for the workout or I might have screwed up when I stopped. 1000m isn’t exactly intuitive since it includes a partial lap.

I did a pretty good job of running the planned paces and it didn’t take that much out of me, or at least it took just as much out of me as a typical track workout. ALL TRACK WORKOUTS HURT.

Wednesday – Cross-Training

Once again I wore myself out playing basketball, but on Wednesdays I wear myself out twice. We had a 3 on 3 soccer game as well. I could feel the effect of basketball on my legs during soccer, but I toughed it out. It helped that we had a full team of 5 and our opponents only had 3. By the end of the game, they were gassed.

Tempo Thursday – 5 miles at 7:14 pace, 7 total miles

This was a great run! I actually wrote a full post about it a few days ago because the weather was SUCH a factor. I wasn’t even feeling that great, but running when you aren’t sweating to death takes a lot less effort. My splits were 6:57, 7:08, 7:01, 7:03 and 7:03. I literally couldn’t slow down enough to make my goal pace. Anyone else think of Rob Lowe from Parks and Rec when they read the “literally” part?

I ran at Timber Lake instead of the normal tempo spot because I wanted some rolling hills in there to help better prepare for the race course. Richmond isn’t hilly, but it isn’t flat. I expected slower times, but they weren’t to be found. If you want to know more than just what I’ve written here, how about a link to my earlier blog post (right here)?

Friday – Rest

Boy oh BOY did I rest! I’m a pretty good rester. I started resting at work and I never stopped. I did play some “butt ball” with my kids. What is “butt ball” you ask? It’s a game that I grew up playing in elementary school back in California. I’ve asked several people on the east coast if they’ve heard of it and none have so far. The name is due to the loser of the game having to get up against the wall and have the ball thrown at them by the other players. Of COURSE we aim for the butt. I’ll get into details and rules some other time perhaps.

I also had some “recovery drinks”. I headed out to Farmville to try out the new Baltic Porter at Third Street Brewing Company. It was DELICIOUS. I took home a growler as well. I may or may not be drinking some of it right now. I was actually the very first customer to order it. That’s a story to tell the grandkids.

Saturday – Postponed Long Run, Rest

No, I didn’t postpone my run because of the beer. We had a ton of things going on and I made the decision to run on Sunday when I’d have less commitments. Charlie’s birthday (7th) is coming up next week and for his birthday he wanted to fish. We invited his best buddy and best buddy’s dad to go out on a small lake with our paddleboat. It was so much fun! We caught so many fish. Then we scarfed pizza and S’mores. It was a great day. Here’s Charlie with a good catch.

Sunday Long Run – 20 miles at 7:44 pace

Did I mention that the weather was bad? I decided right off the bat that I was going to be flexible on the pace. Richmond’s weather will NOT be nearly as awful. Look at this. I love how it says I have a demanding day for running. Hilarious!

The weather was so ridiculously humid I can’t even begin to describe how awful it made my run. I tried to focus on how my first 10 miles should be easy and fun at this point in my training. They weren’t. Every mile was a struggle. I drank every drop of everything that I had and needed more. At the halfway point, I actually took the time to quickly change clothes because my first stuff was so drenched. I think I actually negative split today, which is great! I tried to make my last 6 miles a bit faster to simulate the last 6 miles of the marathon, but I was only able to do that for 2 of them before I had to slow it back down.
These miserable runs will certainly toughen me up, that’s for sure. I’m extremely thankful that Richmond will likely not be this bad. I have one more 20 miler the week after next, so we’ll see how that goes. Once that one is done, it will be time for the dreaded tapering.

How is everyone else’s training going? Still summer time for you?



18 Replies to “Marathon Training Week 11 – You’re Hot and You’re Cold”

  1. High humidity is brutal on long runs. Way to tough it out! Training is going well. High mileage. Hard workouts. Etc.
    I like how you play other sports! Sounds fun. Playing sports with my kids is all I can handle.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Summer has certainly overstayed its welcome here. My friend is doing RLRF like you but started doing ALL her runs on the treadmill because of the heat and humidity. It’s a pace based plan and I don’t see how someone can hit those paces outdoors right now. I might be able to for the marathon plan, but I definitely can’t for the half plan (imho the half plan long runs are way too hard of a pace for me).

    I love that you combine other sports with running on the cross training days and that you have epicly awesome rest days. I hope the heat will cool down for you soon because Richmond is almost here and you have a few more weeks to get in some strong training runs before then.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s crazy that I haven’t even considered the treadmill. I really do hate speedwork on it though. Tempos I can do. If the heat doesn’t quit, I’ll just try to remember how much all of this heat has toughened me up. 🙂


  3. Basketball seems to be a pretty good workout to me. I can’t play (the uncoordinated thing) but the times I have, it’s been a workout. I really hope the weather cools down for you. I wish I could pass along some of the frigidness we have going on here right now. Summer is long gone in these parts.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You better stop saying Richmond won’t be so hot and humid. You’re gonna jinx us all! Nice job getting in 20 more miles than I did Sunday, when I was also supposed to be running 20, but decided the weather wasn’t worth it.

    Liked by 1 person

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