Richmond Marathon Training – Week 14

Ahhhhhhhh!!! Less than 4 weeks to go until my third marathon!!!

This week I finally got to feeling back like myself, thank goodness.  I was super freaked out at the end of last week about my IT band, but it appears I took the right steps soon enough, and I’m going to be fine.  Here is how this week went:

Monday: 6 miles at 11:06 pace, strength training.  It was only 46 degrees out, and this run was the first where I truly felt 100% after my illness.  I was in such a good mood all day because of how well this run went! My IT band had a few twinges of tightness, but I made it through the run with no discomfort.  All in all, a GREAT start to the week.


Tuesday: 45 minutes stationary bike. We switched around my cross training day to be earlier in the week to give my IT band a break.  I took this one easy and followed it with a lot of stretching and foam rolling.

Wednesday: 5 miles: 1 mile easy, 3 around 9:50 pace, 1 mile easy.  Sports massage. My IT band was still not feeling great, but more during the day while sitting at my desk, not necessarily while running.  I changed up the prescribed speedwork and just did some pace miles instead of speed intervals.  I had a 90 minute sports massage after work and he really concentrated hard on my hips, glutes, and of course my IT band.  I felt soooo much better leaving there!

Thursday: 4 miles @ 11:44 pace, strength training. I took this one really easy and focused my strength training on glutes.  I had a lot of stretching and rolling as I was very sore from that massage the night before.

I had a great mail day! We got our first yard inflatable, and my new “marathoner” sweatshirt arrived!


Friday: Rest day – epsom salt bath, lots of stretching and rolling. 

Saturday: 16 miles.  The plan for this was to do the first 4 easy, 2 slightly slower than MGP, 2 easy, 2 at MGP (9:50), 2 easy, and 2 slightly faster than MGP.

Actual splits: 11:17/ 11:33/ 12:04/ 11:42/ 10:24/ 10:02/ 10:54/ 10:52/ 9:51/ 9:56/ 11:46/ 10:55/ 9:22/ 9:08/ 11:51/ 12:26

I’m trying to figure out how to describe this run.  It was much warmer and more humid than I would have liked and running felt hard from the start – you can see I ended up dropping my pace back in the third mile.  I really wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to hit my pace miles, but decided to just give it a go and see what I COULD hit…even if it wasn’t the exact paces.  I know on race day a number of factors could impact my pace strategy and I need to be able to adjust! I was pleasantly surprised that the faster miles weren’t as hard of an effort once I got going.

I definitely ran my last pace mile way too fast (9:08….really Jess? C’mon…) and I paid for it those last two miles.  I have a hard time on the trail with the trees messing up my GPS “current pace” so sometimes my “feel” isn’t quite there.  I should have hit around a 9:35 for both of those miles.

At any rate, I was pleased with this run.  I did it solo, and my legs held up very well.  I felt so much better at the end of this run than I did during my 21 miler last week at mile 12.  It wasn’t super easy by any means, but it brought my confidence back.

Brian and I had a super lazy day on Saturday and did some Netflix bingeing.  We tested out the smoker and made smoked brats, wings, and ribs (not pictured…but were delicious).  Basically, I ate smoked meat all day long (after my recovery meal, of course….) 🙂


Sunday: 3 recovery miles @ 11:59 pace. I did this run a little later in the morning, but it was still lovely.  My legs were definitely tired so I tried to take it super super easy.

Since Saturday was such a lazy day, Sunday was a productive day.  I did some cleaning and meal prepping for the week.  I have a big week of training ahead of me, and I feel that I’m set up for success!


Total miles: 34

I’m starting to get nervous for Richmond now that we are under a month until race day.  I had a nightmare about the race this week that woke me up at 2am (seriously) and I’m starting to really think about what I’m going to wear and how I’m going to feel on race day.  I have no idea yet where my paces will likely fall, but I’m still thinking a 4:30 or under will be my goal.  However, I’ve been reminding myself that anything can happen on race day, and to just focus on putting the best effort I can into training to prepare myself for that.

Less than a month is left until the @sportsbackers Richmond Marathon #runchat #marathontraining Click To Tweet

Next week is my final peak week of training and will be my highest mileage of this (or any) training cycle.  I’m remaining diligent on my stretching/rolling and nutrition to get my body through it successfully. 28 days to go!

Don’t forget to link up with Jessie and I below!

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  1. Congrats on another successful long run! Sorry about your IT band 🙁 I notice that mine acts up more at work from all of the sitting I do so I try to get up and walk around at least once an hour.

    P.S. – All of the yummy food in your post made me so hungry! Time for dinner, lol

    • Yes, it’s feeling much better at the end of the week than the beginning of the week. I also took a lacrosse ball to work to sit on at my desk 😉

  2. I was wondering what your goal was for Richmond- now i know 🙂
    Based on your training recaps and following my sister (who I just paced) on Strava, I have confidence you can do a sub-4:30 at Richmond. So exciting!!!!

    • Thank you! It all depends on what race day throws at me 🙂 I appreciate the vote of confidence, though!

  3. I’m training for my 4th Richmond Half, my first with the Sportsbackers Half Training Team. We did 11 very hilly downtown miles on Sunday – because who doesn’t want to bust out double digits on their birthday. I have a history of ITB issues, and Sunday made me want to cry. When you mention you’ve done strength training, is there a particular routine or set of exercises you stick with or do you switch it up?

    • Sorry to hear you’re having ITB issues! Have you gone to a doctor, sports massage therapist, or PT? I do a lot of foam rolling (not just ITB, but quads, hammies, calves, etc) and also exercises that focus on my glutes and hips. I have some exercise routines saved on my Cross and Strength Training Pinterest board if you want to check it out! I hope you feel better soon, and happy belated birthday!!

  4. Great training week!!!!! And good job on the long run! I’m super happy to hear that you felt great afterwards. I miss feeling those highs!
    Cute minion decoration 🙂

  5. You are doing so good with your training! I can’t wait to see how it all comes together for you. Don’t beat yourself up about your paces! You are rocking it 🙂

  6. I love the inflatable minion!
    Thanks so much for sharing your training. I am coming back from a long period of not being able to run and I want to train for my second marathon this time next year. Reading about others’ training is helping me stay motivated as I work on building my distance back up.

    • Oh, Richmond is great! It was my second marathon as well. Are you going to do a half marathon in the spring? If so, which one?

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