Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Week in the Rearview Mirror: March 18 - 24, 2012

This was a pretty good week all in all. I followed my slow build-back plan, keeping the run distance low early in the week and inserting the rest days as planned. By the weekend I was able to string some 6 mile run days together, and the left calf continues to improve. The right instep issue has resolved as  nearly as I can tell.

As such, I'll be moving forward with my plan to participate in the A2A Marathon this coming Sunday. As I stated in a comment earlier, a wiser person might still choose to sit this marathon out and let the healing process complete, but I'm just not that wise...I really want to do this, so I'll roll the dice. Will I get hurt doing this, at least to some degree...probably so. However, I will definitely modify my post-marathon recovery plan this time to include a lot more rest days, and a much more gentle return.

My running plan between now and the marathon looks like this:

Day   Activity / Distance
Tuesday 6 miles
Wednesday 6 miles
Thursday Rest
Friday 4 miles (Walking)
Saturday Rest
Sunday Marathon

So, unless the mid-week runs produce an issue that seems serious, the game is on.Here is what last week looked like...

Day   Activity   Distance (in miles)
Sunday Walking 1.02
Running 4.02
Walking 1.05
Monday Rest Day
Tuesday Walking 1.00
Running 4.00
Wednesday Walking 1.10
Running 4.10
Walking 1.10
Thursday Rest Day
Friday Walking 1.03
Running 6.14
Saturday Running 6.19
Walking 0.50

These are my time and distance totals for the week:

Activity   Time Total   Distance Total (in miles)
Running 3:40:27 24.45
Walking 1:40:29 6.80
Overall Total 5:20:56 31.25

In cross-training, both the pushups and pullups are progressing nicely. I'll stop the upper body work by Wednesday to ensure I'm not sore for the marathon, but the numbers are improving. I'm mixing up the reps and sets each time, but I averaged 111 total pushups (9 sets on average) and 31 pullups (6 sets on average) per session last week (3 sessions each on different days).

As far as the March planks challenge is concerned, I completed that on Thursday of this week, to a total of 101. Doing 15 minutes of those in a day (with a 45 second recovery between 1 minute planks) still really works my lower back. I'm not a big fan of this, but I'll keep it in the rotation just for core strength purposes.

I also did three kettlebell workouts this week...a first for me. It seems that everything I do from the cross training perspective works me in a slightly different way, and the kettlebells were no different. You can read more about my experience with them here.

I only went to Yoga on Thursday this week due to a scheduling conflict. My wife is building up for her first half-marathon (which I plan to run with her) on April 29th, and she needed me to watch the little one so she could do a long run on Saturday morning before it got too warm. She successfully completed 13.21 miles in 2:17:49 unsupported for her first attempt at the full half-marathon distance, and I'm quite proud of her. It was also her first time running with a fuel belt with full water bottles, and her first time eating on the run (GU). She managed to run every step of the way, and although she was tired, she came through it beautifully.

Happy Running Everyone !!!


  1. My friend, I wish you all the best in your upcoming marathon.....you don't need any advice from me, so I'll offer it up anyway!

    Just go easy.

    Have a great time, and I look forward to reading all about it afterwards!

  2. So excited for your wife. I bet she eventually runs a marathon with you. My hubby thinks running is stupid. Oh well. Good luck on your race. Look forward to hearing about it. Have fun!!

  3. Good luck on your marathon this weekend! Just wondering-when you are running during the week do you always run about 6 miles or keep it that low right before a marathon?

    Congrats to your wife-I hope to be there 1 day. Not anytime soon, though! :)


    1. Shannon: For me, about 4 to 6 miles per running day is pretty normal, unless I'm injured for some reason (and then it's less of course). This will be my third time at this distance (I've previously completed one 26.3 mile training run, and one marathon race), and for the other times I have tapered in the last week basically the same way.

      For a Sunday race, I take the previous Monday off, run 4 to 6 depending on how I feel on Tuesday and Wednesday, Thursday off, Easy walking for 4 miles on Friday, then Saturday off (the day before the race).

      I'm a firm believer that it is better to show up slightly under trained prior to a race of any distance, than over-trained and tired.

      During my "normal" training I'll take two days off a week. Almost always a Monday, then later in the week (usually either Thursday or Friday).

  4. So how do you go from just running 4-6 miles to running 26? Not that I'll ever run a marathon-just curious! :)


    1. Oh...I see your question now. I personally did that by inserting weekend long runs months ago.

      Many plans have you put in a long run either every weekend, or every other weekend. One Saturday (or Sunday if you prefer) it would be 8 miles (just two longer than a "normal" run if 6 is normal). A couple of weeks later, that would be 10, then 12, 14, 16, 18, and 20. You build up the distance over time (in this type of situation, given that you could run 6 comfortably at the start, it would take 14 weeks to get up to a 20 miler).

      Most plans will have your longest training run capped at 20 (about 3/4 of a marathon). Some have you run a couple of 20 milers, some increase to 22. For some of us "have to prove I can do it to myself first" people, we go all the way...but that is rare.

      Then you have a three week taper period before the marathon. In total, with one 20 mile run, your looking at about 18 weeks minimum.

      Hope this helps. :-)

  5. I gotcha!! That makes complete sense!! :)