Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Weekly Recap: 9/10-9/16

I have to say this week went pretty well overall. I only skipped one planned run day, but I've been re-learning how to deal with my seasonal allergies (but thank God the shots have significantly improved how I feel!). I'm used to skipping runs this time of year because my head feels like it's going to explode, not because I just feel sleepy (because my body is convinced I'm on the verge of death). 

It's hard to say this is all mental, because there's obviously a physical reaction outside of my control here (and I'm doing what I can to mitigate it - shots, Zyrtec every day, 8+ hours of sleep a night), but I know sleeping won't actually help, so it still feels like I'm succumbing to my weakness.

The problem is, every day becomes Caturday.
I used my air filter last night before I slept, and I noticed a huge difference this morning. Even though I had to get up a lot earlier than usual for a work meeting (7 AM meetings should be illegal), I was so much perkier than usual that even some of my co-workers noticed. The awful sleepy feeling was successfully staved off until about lunchtime.

I'm not a fan of exercising in the morning - although I would like to be - so I'm contemplating transitioning over when my next training cycle starts. Not to spoil too much, but I'm planning to use the FIRST method, which will only require four weekday workouts. I plan to take a bit of an extended lunch (staying late to make up for it) to swim twice a week, so I would only need to get up early enough to run two days a week, which I think is very doable for me.

If you understand, please immediately become my friend.
I'm sure the adjustment will take some getting used to, but, as much as I like evening runs, I like not having to have this huge battle over my allergies every day more. I'll also have the bonus of DST ending a week into training, so I think if I can gut out the first two days, the habit will be easier to set, because it'll feel like my normal time anyway. Once everything outside is good and dead, I can always switch back to evening runs if I want!

Wednesday, September 10

I think I did things that day, but they did not include a nap, and that was very sad.

Thursday, September 11
5 mi easy, 12:03 min/mile

This was our first real day of fall weather in mid-Michigan, and it felt amazing! I obviously overdressed, but not as badly as normal.

Friday, September 12

I caved to my fake sleepiness and the cold rain outside and just curled up on the couch. That week was still pretty rough at work, and I needed the time to decompress. At least I didn't have to stay until 8:30 like the week before....

Saturday, September 13
6 mi easy, 12:17 min/mile

I felt fine but took the pace a little slower and was very comfortable. My new tentative game plan for Monument is to run about 12 min/miles at the start (I'm adjusting the pace from this run for the five mile decline the race starts with). I will post more on this later, but hopefully it will prevent me from blowing up.

Sunday, September 14
10 mi long, 12 min/mile

I tried out my planned pace, and it felt comfortable. My legs were fatigued, but I'm sure taper will clear that up. I focused on fueling properly (maybe that's why I get so tired in races?!) and forced myself to take 100 calories per mile. (For context, that meant 15 beans per hour, rather than the usual 5.) The distance was too short to really say, but I didn't feel any blood sugar drops nor (more importantly, honestly) any GI distress. I plan to carry this through to race day. I might vomit up a giant pink mess at 20 miles, but hopefully it will be worth it.

Monday, September 15
5 mi easy, 12:04 min/mile

My legs felt like lead after the prior long run, so I took it easy. There was a light rain, which made everything more enjoyable. I did realize that my normal route is not well-lit, and I should probably get a head lamp so I can run into the evening. (For what it's worth, the route is very safe, it just doesn't have enough street lights to make out the uneven sidewalk, so I end up high-stepping and looking ridiculous.)

Tuesday, September 16
5 mi easy, 11:57 min/mile

I ran with my co-worker (who I'm doing the 10K with in October) to help push her to five miles for only the second time. Chatting made the time fly by, and I was glad I got out there.

I'm debating what my plan is for the next week (plus the extra couple days before the marathon). Hanson's calls for a much different taper than usual. I don't disagree with their theory, I'm just not sure it's what's best for me, considering how I've been so off plan the last month.

I'm tempted to go back to Hal Higdon's taper (the Intermediate I program), since that worked well for me before. I'm only hesitant because I feel like I should get a few more miles on my legs, but I know now that I'm 10 days out, I won't really build any fitness. The hay is the barn...I'm just worried I'll lose the key before race day!

Informative picture illustrating my fitness. Thanks, Wikipedia!

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