I’ve been writing about other things lately, mostly associated with running, but I figured it was time for an actual training update/check-in. The Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon is 102 days away, so that’s about 14 weeks. Typing that makes me feel a little less nervous about tackling 26.2 miles again. I have no clue why I feel like the race is right around the corner. For goodness sake, it’s only the beginning of February; there’s still a lot of training time.
I’m by no means behind on training. Just this Saturday I was able to get in another 14-miler on the treadmill (13 miles at 8:51 pace and 1 mile total for warm-up and cool down), which was faster than my previous long run of the same distance. I fought for those miles though. It was hard. I didn’t bring great fuel with me. I had blisters on the balls of my feet. But I got it done, and I needed that run. The Wednesday prior to my long run was the first run back in a week. No miles for me in one week. Zip. Zero. I couldn’t even tell you the last time I took one week off from running. I decided to wipe the slate clean and start fresh in February. January wasn’t a bad month, but my running lacked diversity and consistency. Time to reset and refocus.
One week in, and I’m pretty happy with the miles I’ve put in and the types of runs I’ve completed. In addition to a pretty good long run, I did some speed work on the treadmill, running at my fastest interval pace ever (and pretty much dying after). I hate intervals when I’m running them, but hot damn, do I feel great when it’s done. I got in a run on my home treadmill. I don’t know why running on it is so hard, but it is. My speeds are at least 1-1.5 minutes per mile slower at home, and my legs feel like they are working harder for each step. This, I feel, makes me stronger though, so I should do it more often. I even made it outside for a few miles yesterday to enjoy the sunshine and warmth and test out the legs on the road. I was pleasantly surprised – 8:14 pace for 3 miles and then a cool down mile. Not too shabby after my Saturday long run.
Where do I go from here? I feel confident in the fact I can already run a half marathon, which means I can focus on adding miles and getting a little faster. I’m not looking to be a speed demon in May, but I would like to run another sub-4 hour marathon. I need to make sure I don’t fall into the training trap where I run to get the miles in but don’t mix it up with speed. I’ve also been adding lifting to my routine to help get stronger. I’m hoping this all will pay off in May and again in June when I run my first ultra marathon. I don’t have a lot of races on the calendar before May. Although I haven’t signed up yet, the plan is to run the 20 Mile Drop and Brokeman’s 20 Miler in April. I’m also hoping to get my sons, Cole and Cael, to run St. Malachi with me. If we run, it would probably be the 2-mile race, but I’d love to see them do the 5.
If you’re in the midst of training, good luck! If you’re not, there’s still time to start training and register for Cleveland before the price increase on Thursday. With the great race shirts, commemorative key chain, and updated medals (bye-bye, spinning guitar), you don’t want to miss out.
Also, if you want to score a free entry to a CLE Marathon race of your choice, make sure you check out the other ambassadors’ pages for more info. This week, Rachel from Running on Happy is running her giveaway. And you have to admit, running CLE for free would be pretty awesome.