Portland Marathon training week 6 of 16

Week 6! Got all my mileage in just fine but cross-training was … nonexistent.

Monday 7/24/17: Rest day. Kitten learned how to sleep in my lap.

Tuesday 7/25/17: Morning loop of the park: 4 miles at 10:00 pace. Felt stiff from three days off, but had plenty of energy and the cooler weather was pleasant.

Wednesday 7/26/17: Morning run: 6 miles at 10:00 pace with a focus on hills. Incredibly cool, sunny day and everything felt great.

Thursday 7/27/17: Rest day.

Friday 7/28/17: 6-mile morning solo run. I wanted to just do an “as you feel” 6-miler, not checking my watch. I did that for the first 5 miles, thinking I was keeping the pace steady, but the humidity and heat were back and I didn’t have any oomph left at the end, so I just did the last mile as an easy cool-down. But when I got home and checked my miles splits, it was a nice progression: 10:20, 9:47, 9:43, 9:27, 9:18, then 10:32. So that’s fine. The last few days off cool weather (Wednesday especially) felt incredible, but I think we’re back to “real” New York summer now.

Saturday 7/29/17: Rest day, focusing on kitten socialization.

Sunday 7/30/17: Long solo run. Cool and sunny, but I struggled with hydration and fueling (not enough of either beforehand, and didn’t carry enough water or gels with me). At 11:05/mile, my average pace was totally fine, but I don’t like the way I did it (fading at the end and overall feeling like I worked too hard).

Totals: 30 miles running (yeah!) but no biking or climbing. I blame the kitten – I didn’t want to leave her home for longer stretches of time than absolutely necessary.

Portland Marathon training week 5 of 16

No-name kitten demonstrates perfect rest-day form.

This week was a scorcher! It also featured an unexpected kitten (!) and a missed long run (boo).

Monday 7/17/17: Ran the NYRR RUN 5k race in Prospect Park after work. We were late to the race (as in, heard the start horn in the distance when we were still shuffling across the park to the start) and started way at the back of the pack. This was frustrating because I ended up spending the entire race weaving – usually in a NYRR race, as long as I start in my proper corral, the first mile at most will be choked up and slow and then I can settle into a good pace, but this is the first time I’ve spent an entire race in that situation. The temperature was in the low 80s with super-high humidity, so between that and the weaving there was no PR in sight. Still, I ran 26:53 on my watch (8:28/mile), and I’m fine with that.

Tuesday 7/18/17: I had a bike fitting at Bicycle Habitat, which was really interesting! I got a recommendation for a new saddle that will fit my butt bones better (thanks to a machine that measured butt bones), talked about seat height, leg angles, posture, and all this good stuff, used a trainer for the first time, got the cleat on my right shoe adjusted so my foot angle is better, and more. Today was just bike miles, riding to the fitting, to work afterward, and to a bar after work.

Wednesday 7/19/17: Speaking of the bar after work last night: good reminder of why I’m trying to avoid weeknight and night-before-workout drinking. It was fun but … ugh. I moved my morning workout (5x1000m intervals) to the evening but even then, between the heat and some definite dehydration, I couldn’t get through the whole thing. I warmed up, ran two and a half of the 1000s, then just jogged for a total of about 5 miles. Eye-roll.

Thursday 7/20/17: Feeling better, though it’s still crazy hot. No running but I tried some of the Jasyoga reset videos for the first time: Foot Reset, Hip Reset, and Hip Flexor Reset. It felt good. There’s a one-month free trial code via their Instagram page.

Friday 7/21/17: Brooklyn continues to feel like a sauna. 6.5-mile run in the morning, 10:45 pace, stopping at basically every water fountain we passed. A little yoga after work.

Saturday 7/22/17: Rest day, mostly dealing with a stray kitten I found on the fire escape Friday night. Kitten care took precedence over bike miles.

Sunday 7/23/17: Not feeling very well (and not going into details because that would be TMI for a public blog!) and I bailed on the long run. Which I HATED doing, but I think was the right decision. Ugh. Extra sleep, and some quality kitten time.

Totals: 14.5 miles running, 5.5 miles biking. I’m definitely disappointed in the mileage situation, but it was a tough week in a lot of ways.

Portland Marathon training week 4 of 16

This week is a step-back week with only three (well, plus one optional) runs according to my training plan. I really appreciated the additional off day, but Wednesday’s workout and Sunday’s long run were still hard work.

Monday 7/10/17: I meant to climb before work but when I woke up, I wanted another hour and a half of sleep more than anything. Light yoga/strength work in the morning and some serious foam rolling at night.

Tuesday 7/11/17: Morning bike laps with the Women’s Cycling NYC group: 20 miles at 16.5mph. This felt good.

Wednesday 7/12/17: Humid evening workout in the park! 2.4-mile warmup, then 8×400 (2:08 working down to 1:57 but not all that steadily) with a minute or so rest between, then 1 mile aiming for marathon pace (9:02, a little too fast), then cooldown.

Thursday 7/13/17: Bailed on climbing again in favor of sleeping in. Evening foam rolling.

Friday 7/14/17: 5 mile morning run at 10:00 pace. Much cooler this morning but still humid. I found a berry patch at mile 4.8 and stopped to pick a bunch, then ran the last 0.2 with a big handful of berries so I could bring them home.

Saturday 7/15/17: 2 hours kayaking in Marine Park with a friend. This was fun! Quick evening swim at Coney Island before a beer-and-french-fry meetup on the boardwalk.

Sunday 7/16/17: 12 mile long run down to Coney Island with training buddy F. It was hot without much shade along the route and we were both a little tired, but I think we did a good job. Average pace 10:36, final mile 9:12 then shoes off and straight into the ocean to cool down.

Totals: 24 miles running, 20 miles biking, no climbing but 2 hours in a kayak.

And with that, Week 4 is done. One-quarter of the way to Portland!


Happy feet. Yes, they’re marked L and R 🙂 I’m that cool.

I have a reeeeaaally minimalist running sock situation going on and it’s a result of my being reeeeaally happy with my running socks. I have exactly two pairs of Darn Tough socks (I think they’re an earlier version of the model in the link) that I wear for about 95% of my runs and bike rides. They are, indeed, darn tough, and they fit well and don’t slide around or rub weird (I sprinkle some 2Toms BlisterShield in them before long runs). They’re made with enough wool that they never stink. The touch of extra height means my ankles never rub anything. They’re not really the most stylish socks ever, and I HATE pink, but who cares.

I’ll wear these suckers for two or three runs (making sure they air out well in between), wash them on cold and hang them up to dry, and repeat. I hope they last forever, and if they don’t I have that Darn Tough lifetime guarantee to fall back on.

(None of this is sponsored by Darn Tough but if they want to send me free socks I probably won’t complain.)

(Though if they did send me free socks I would probably just give them to my friends because two pairs is enough, really.)

Portland Marathon training week 3 of 16

I listened to the Runner’s World Show podcast for the first time this week (I always have big goals for listening to podcasts on the subway, but then I’m distracted by music). Episode 60 was really good. Key takeaway: Stress + rest = growth.

Monday 7/3/17: No work! Three hours bouldering in the morning, then some foam rolling, plus about 12 miscellaneous bike miles (to/from Costco, then to Brighton Beach), and a quick swim at Brighton Beach. Fun, fun day.

Tuesday 7/4/17: No work again! Morning 6-mile run with F. We were both feeling tired and I was pretty sore/stiff from yesterday’s climbing. Five strides at the end of the run and heel dips afterward.

Wednesday 7/5/17: Rest day. It feels weird to have a full rest day mid-week but I’m really appreciating it. Cheered and rang my cowbell enthusiastically at the Al Goldstein 5k race after work; light foam rolling before bed.

Approaching the TrackTown 5k finish line – at least I *look* a little bit like I know what I’m doing?

Thursday 7/6/17: I kept things relatively easy when I climbed in the morning, and did some light foam rolling. I left work early to get to the 5k road race at the start of the TrackTown Summer Series NYC meet on Randalls Island and, despite train delays (UGH) I made it in time to see some teammates, check my bag, and do a decent mile warm-up. I was feeling slightly intimidated by the race itself but also reasonably rested and prepared. Unfortunately I did NOT have the oomph I was hoping for, and my finish time (26:43 by my watch, avg 8:28/min) was nowhere near last month’s PR of 24:58. In retrospect, I don’t think I was quite as rested as I assumed I was; also, I ate a too-big lunch that still had me feeling heavy by the time the race started. Still, it was cool to be at Icahn stadium with teammates and a bunch of other local runners, and I had a blast watching the pros run after us. And there was beer.

Friday 7/7/17: Mostly a rest day: just foam rolling and 8 bike miles to and from Bunna Cafe for dinner. (YUM.)

Saturday 7/8/17: Noon run with some fellow club members to eat key lime pie in Red Hook. I’m not used to midday runs and it was hot and humid but 100% worth it for the pie prize at the end. 5.3 miles, 10:30ish/mile, heel dips afterward.

Sunday 7/9/17: Long run #3! We started at 7 am. It was sunny but less humid than it’s been lately, and there was nice shade and breeze for almost the entire run over the Manhattan Bridge, through Battery Park, and up the west side of Manhattan. This felt really good and I was happy to pick up the pace for the final two miles. 11 miles total, 11:00ish/mile average.

Totals: 27.5 miles running, 20 miles biking, 4.5 hours climbing. I slacked a little on the yoga and strength work at home – gotta fix that next week. This was my highest running mileage week in a while, but it didn’t feel draining.

Portland Marathon training week 2 of 16

The ocean is the best ice bath.

Monday 6/26/17: SERIOUS rest day. As in I slept in and didn’t even roll into work until around noon. That felt good.

Tuesday 6/27/17: Early morning run: 4.5 miles in the rain with 4 strides near the end. Heel dips, then strength routine at home.

Wednesday 6/28/17: Morning run: w/u, 6x800m, c/d. This was fun. I forgot intervals were fun. I like the 800m distance.

Thursday 6/29/17: Morning climbing: 1.5 hours on the bouldering walls with two good friends who are also in the early stages of their marathon training cycles. Discussions about how to balance running, cycling, climbing, and life ensued. Evening: a little yoga time and some foam rolling.

Friday 6/30/17: Morning run: 2 miles warmup, 1 mile time trial, then 1 mile cooldown. This was hard! But I ran the mile in 7:37 which is without a doubt the fastest mile I have ever run in my life. Heel dips after cooling down.

Saturday 7/1/17: 11 hours of sleep followed by a big breakfast and then a 40-mile bike ride from Brooklyn up through Manhattan to the George Washington Bridge, across to New Jersey, and then back. Whew! It was fun to be out on my bike on my own, and it let me get a better feel for what kind of pace is sustainable for me at longer distances. It seems like if I’m around 15 mph I can keep going for hours. Average for this ride was a little slower (13mph), mostly due to lots of start/stop traffic stuff (plus one crazy hill). Tailwind worked pretty well for nutrition on the ride but I was craving solid food by the end. Evening: foam rolling.

Sunday 7/2/17: Super-early 9 mile long run down to Coney Island with running buddy F. It was very humid even at 6 a.m., so this was hard. But it would’ve been harder alone. We kept a really steady 10:30 pace with a strong finish. Wading into the cold surf after the run was the best feeling.

Totals: 24 miles running, 40 miles biking, 1.5 hours rock climbing. And lots of sleep. So far, so  good.