Richmond Marathon Training – Week 3

Another week of marathon training for the Richmond Marathon is in the books. My goal this week was to get in all my workouts, and I’m happy to say that I was able to do so, despite some schedule challenges.

Monday: Planned – 3 miles. Actual – 3 miles @ 10:47 pace + 30 mins strength training, restorative yoga.

I knew that Tuesday I wouldn’t have an opportunity to do strength during the day or evening, and I wasn’t willing to get up at 3:30am to fit it in after my morning run. So, I did strength training after my run Monday. I was able to focus on quads and glutes using handweights and some other props around my house.

After work, I met up with Amy for dinner and then we went to restorative yoga which really hit the spot!

Tuesday: Planned – 5 miles, 6 x 20 second striders with 20 seconds in between, strength.  Actual – 5 miles @ 11:01 pace, 6 x 20 second striders with 20 seconds in between.

I had a sales conference to attend Tues/Wed of this week, so I had to get up pretty early to get this one in. My morning routine has been taking me longer since I’ve been styling my hair every single day…I need to find a way to streamline it so I can get more sleep!

This run was hot and humid – another 100% humidity morning. I was feeling good though and probably ran this one a bit too fast, as I found myself having to dial it back quite a few times. This time I followed the plan with the striders and really pushed it. I hit a sub 7:00 pace on one and was thinking about the elite athletes who run entire marathons faster than that. Mind blown.

The sales meeting went great and we had dinner at the Shake Shack where I had the most amazing ice cream ever, peach pie!

Wednesday: Planned – active  recovery or restorative yoga.  Actual – 30 minutes stationary reclining bike.

I’ve really come to enjoy Wednesdays. I can sleep in a little later, and spending time on the bike allows me to relax and read. I’m in the middle of a great book right now (Roses by Leila Meacham) and the time on the bike flew by.

Brian came home Wednesday morning from Boston! It’s great to have him back in Atlanta. We enjoyed a nice dinner after work.

Thursday: Planned – 6 miles easy + strength. Actual – 5 miles @ 11:21 pace + strength.

Another hot and humid run. Upper 70s and 99% humidity. This run sucked from start to finish and I was soaking with sweat when I was done. The entire last mile I was thinking about how I can’t wait until fall. I also didn’t sleep well the night before, it will take some time to adjust to having someone else back in the bed with me!

I didn’t realize until I was texting Christina after my run that we actually had 6 miles on the schedule, not 5. Oops.  I need to be sure to look at my schedule every night and stop going off of memory.

This was my first try at a lunchtime strength workout, and it went so well! I went down to the gym around 11:30 to beat the lunch rush. I was able to spend 30 mins in the weight room, change back, and grab a wrap from the cafeteria to eat in my office all in the hour. I did heavy weights to make the most of the time and my legs were like jello afterwards! It was great to get a burst of energy on my lunch break. The weight room was well stocked, though I did feel a bit self conscious as I was the only woman in the weight room, and I could feel a lot of eyes on me.  I hate that….

Thursday night we drove to Charleston for our weekend getaway.

Friday: Planned – rest. Actual – rest.

Great rest day! We explored Charleston a bit and ended the day with a historic pub crawl where we learned a lot of (very embellished) history while enjoying some local brews.

Pub Tour!

Pub Tour!

Saturday: Planned – 14 miles easy. Actual – rest day.

We decided to move our long run until Sunday. We spent the morning at the beach where Skipper got to play with a ton of other dogs. He also ran straight into the waves, which was a big improvement from the last few times we took him to the beach. He continues to get more and more comfortable with the waves!

Fun with the other doggies!

Fun with the other doggies!

Skipper Loves the Beach

Skipper Loves the Beach

Enjoying the waves with Brian

Enjoying the waves with Brian

We spent the afternoon exploring some of the shops in Charleston and had a great dinner at Coast. I just love fresh seafood and it is really hard to come by in Atlanta.

Sunday: planned – rest day. Actual – 14 miles @ 11:53 pace

This one was the sweatiest of all the runs. It was about 77 when we started with humidity close to 100%. We met Abby for a run on the greenway which was beautiful and flat!  It was so great to run with both Chrissy and run while getting to know Abby.  This was the first run of training that really felt like marathon training, which tends to happen with any distance over a half marathon.

View from the Greenway

View from the Greenway

Abby, Myself, and Chrissy

Abby, Myself, and Chrissy

I got up early again and had two hard boiled eggs and a half of a bagel. Before the run I topped off with three shot bloks.  I took a salt pill before the start and another one each hour.  I tried four more different gels on this run: regular GU, Hammer Gel, Honey Stinger, and E-Hydrate.  I got really hungry right before I took my second gel, but the hunger didn’t come back after that.  I drank two bottles of water, as well as some in the middle, and also some Gatorade around mile 8 which was DELICIOUS. My energy levels were great this run! I started off slow with Christina and Abby but pulled away during the last 4 miles. I could have kept going for several more miles.  I got a nice kick during the last mile and killed it at slightly faster than marathon pace.  The last gel did make my stomach a bit upset, though.

My knees were really achy during this run starting around mile 8 or so. They’ve been achy all week, but usually not during running. I’ve attributed this to wearing heels a lot the past couple of weeks, and I’m putting them away again. I can’t risk injury over it!  I’m going to keep an eye on them this week and dial back even more if needed, though this week is a fall-back week which should help.

I felt good after the run but started feeling sick a few hours later. My stomach was just not right. I’ve been switching up my reflux meds and that’s not working for me, so I know that has to be a factor. However, I think a bigger factor was not properly planning for my post long run meal and skimping here. In fact, I really skimped on post run nutrition all week. Rushing out the door in the mornings has made this easy to neglect, and I know that won’t fly forever. This week I’m going to try to get back into making shakes so I can get some food in me quickly.

Today, I’m feeling really good – my legs feel totally fine! I’m not sore nor am I achy.  I did take a rest day this morning, but I’m excited for the rest of the week.

Total Miles for the Week: 27

What went well: Getting all my workouts in. I also made time for the warmups/cooldowns even with my schedule constraints. I continue to be challenged with a new work routine, and I’ve even started considering beginning to run in the evenings.  I really enjoy my evenings with Brian though, so I’m not ready to go there yet.  I’m hoping having access to the gym at work this week will help alleviate some of this.  I am also glad I figured out a way to time my mid-run fuel and tried some other gels.  I’ve tried a lot of brands now, and I decided I liked the Huma Gels best.  I ordered a variety pack of different flavors and will try them on the next few runs to figure out which ones work best for me.

Where I struggled: foam rolling and post-run nutrition.  I only foam-rolled a couple of times, I need to be sure to do this more this week.  Also, eating right post run makes a big difference in how I feel the rest of the day.  I’m going to work on this over the coming week.

This coming week is a fall-back week for mileage, thank goodness! I have my first pace run on Thursday which I’m looking forward to, especially since the weather is supposed to be in the 60s each morning this week! It’s like a gift from the running gods for putting up with the oppressive heat and humidity this past week.  Saturday I’m meeting up with Carrie to preview some of the Diva’s Half Marathon course.  I’ve never run in Peachtree City, so I’m excited to explore a new running route.

Onward to week 4!

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  1. I feel sick just reading all the stuff you consumed before and during your long run. Do you think that is necessary? Long slow distance runs are prime time to teach your body to rely on fat for fuel, which is the body’s most efficient fuel source. Long runs are supposed to be run aerobically, so that’s what your body relies on anyway for fuel; it doesn’t need sugar. If you pop 3 shot blocks before your run, you are telling it from the get go to rely on sugar. 4 additional Gus during a 14-miler sounds excessive, especially after you sacrificed your sleep to get up and eat a bagel and eggs. I doubt if I will take more than 4 Gus during an entire marathon. All that sugar and Gatorade should upset your stomach; I highly doubt your issues are due to a change in medication, just ease up on the Gu.

    • Thanks for sharing what works for you Courtney. I find it helpful to learn about different strategies as I try to figure out what works best for me. My goal for this training cycle is to try out different things and come up with a good strategy that works for where I am with my running and my goals! I’m working with my coach on this and I know I’ll have some tweaks the next few weeks. Hope your training is going well!

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