|I'm in pain just looking at this finishing picture from the 10k. When my head is tilted back like that, you know I'm struggling!|
Tuesday night I fell asleep after putting Elise to bed and slept for 11 hours straight. I hadn't intended to go to bed for the night so I was in my clothes, unbrushed teeth, the works and I slept through the night. Then comes the doozy of this week's speed workout. I planned to run 8x800 at the track. Since I fell asleep so early the night before I hadn't set an alarm for the morning. I slept all the way until 7:00 when the kids woke which meant it would be an evening run. When I got to the track they were still having practice so I ended up having to run my workout on the roads. I had worn my fuel belt figuring I'd set the water bottles out to drink in between repeats on the track. Since I wasn't running on the track I had to wear my fuel belt for the entire workout. I was glad I had decided to take it since it was 80 degrees and I'm not used to running in that kind of heat yet. I took off for my first repeat and my legs felt off but I just tried to hold it together as best I could. I usually average around 3:05-3:15 for my 800 repeats on a good day. I went through the first one in 3:14 so not bad for the first repeat of the day which is usually my slowest. But then the second one I barely held on for sub-3:20 and after that I knew I was in trouble, just waiting for the wheels to come off. Next was 3:26, then 3:30 and it got progressively slower from there until I was barely slugging along at what would normally be my pace for a relaxed run. I was holding back tears as I finished my last repeat in over 3:30. Then I had to slog home for my cool down which ended up being an extra mile because I hadn't turned around at the right spot. Once I hit 10 miles I was wishing Ty would drive by on his way home from work and I could get a ride home, but at 11 miles I was finally home feeling beaten down. To add insult to injury I had somehow chafed right above my sports bra to the side of my armpit by my back.
After talking things over with Ty and then my dad I decided at this point I have most likely over trained but to rule out any other possibilities I called my doctor's office in hopes of having blood work done to check my iron and thyroid levels. I need to get my legs back. This has been an unraveling about 4 weeks in the making. At this rate if I keep going there will be no spring half-marathon for me. My plan is to take next week off from hard training. Just run easy miles and hopefully get my legs back. Then it will be on to the St. Patrick's Day 5k and I'll wait to run my now long delayed and dreaded 8 mile tempo run during week 10 of training, 2 weeks out from the half, which will probably give me a better idea of my fitness level anyway. My plan is to not focus on a set number of miles for next week, but just do what feels right for my body to get back on track. I hate to lose out on miles and start a "taper" this early, possibly peaking too soon, but I have got to get my legs back and I can't take another terrible workout piled onto the already stacked up bad workout after bad workout. It's to the point where I'm not enjoying any of my runs, even the slow easy runs.
I'm frustrated with myself that this season has come to this. All I needed to do to PR was to run the same training as my fall cycle and I would have easily run a PR due to the easier course. But then I decided with a flat, easy course I might as well go for a sub-1:30. I'm only getting older and my fall half-marathon has proved to not be the best for running fast times. I only ran 2 weeks at 50 miles in the fall. I've already run 6 weeks at 50 miles this training cycle. Maybe I should have only picked up a couple extra 50 mile weeks, running say 4 weeks at 50 miles total this cycle. Or maybe my problem has nothing to do with weekly mileage and more to do with shoving too many hard workouts into one week. There's really no way to know. But I still have 5 weeks after this week of training which I feel like is still time to salvage this training block and hopefully still come out with a PR in the half-marathon. I have to take each season as a learning experience and take away from it what I can. I should have been a bit more cautious this training cycle and not quite so crazy about trying to fit in anything and everything that might make me faster so I could break that 1:30 barrier. I started dreaming about that after crossing the finish line of my first half-marathon 36 seconds shy of seeing the 1:29s. It's hard to believe that was 10 years ago! I also must admit that I really don't know how to train for a half-marathon or what workouts are the most important because I've always trained for 5ks. I just kind of made things up and searched blogs and the internet as I went in the fall and had success so I kept at it at a higher level this go around. So I'm thinking it would benefit me to find some form of training plan online and then tweak it for my needs to use for the fall.
I was reading a blog I came across through a link in a friend's post and really enjoyed a post where she discussed goals. I couldn't find the post I was looking for when I went back. But in the post she mentioned how she has A goals for her races, those are her goals for if the conditions are perfect, it's a great course, and she has an awesome race. Then she has B goals which are for if the conditions aren't favorable or she doesn't have a great race. Then there are C goals for when things just don't go well. That really clicked with me because I pretty much always have an A and a B goal for my races. Usually I share my B goal but keep my A goal to myself as a secret. In the fall my A goal was to run a PR. I thought it was possible with perfect conditions and one of the best races of my life. I came awfully close considering my performance in the last 2 miles was not best race material. My B goal was to run in the 1:32's which I was still able to best with a sub-par last couple miles. Going into this spring season my A goal was to break 1:30 and my B goal was to run a PR. Now I'm re-evaluating those goals. My A goal is to run a PR, my B goal is to run under 1:33, and my C goal is to run under 1:35. Of course, there's still this little part of my brain that is desperate for that sub-1:30 to be a reasonable goal for me but it just isn't right now. Maybe after a couple weeks of getting my legs back under me it will seem feasible again, but right now it seems so unlikely. Only time will tell.
I was starting to dread the half-marathon and wish I could just scrap this season after how terrible my legs have been feeling but Ty told me that was crazy, I've worked too darn hard to just give up on this season entirely. He's right. I think I still have some good stuff going on, just hidden under the layers of exhaustion. I'm hoping that once I let my legs have a little bit of a rest things will pick back up. In all my self-hatred after my easy run today where I legitimately wanted to walk, I got on Facebook and saw they had made a post in the Aquarium Run event about the bibs coming in and I got excited all over again. No matter what time this race results in, it will be fun. The sea turtle exhibit opens roughly a month before the race and the race's theme is sea turtles. I am looking forward to the race again and am hopeful things will be looking up for me by then! Time to dust myself off once again and keep moving forward!
|The picture they posted of the race bibs, how awesome are they?!!?|