Sunday, May 24, 2015


Week 11 of training for the Mystic Half Marathon is done...RACE DAY IN 1 WEEK!

Total distance for the week: 22.56 miles

Not much to say this week except HOLY CRAP IT'S ALMOST RACE DAY.  Back in March when I started this training cycle, the race felt forever away.  I mean, there was still snow on the ground!  And this race wasn't until after Memorial Day.  Such a long time, right?  Eh, not really.  The last 3 months have flown by, but I feel like I am in great shape and really hoping for a PR a week from now!

One thing I am super proud is that I completed ALL of my training runs.  Every single one.  I made a calendar like this for every month of the training, and man did it feel good to cross off each workout as it was completed:
All my other Type A runners feel so warm and fuzzy looking that this pinnacle of organization, amiright?
When I trained for the Rochester half last September, I used a training program through my Nike+ app that, in hindsight, was too advanced for me.  And instead of adjusting it, I just started skipping training runs willy-nilly (though never the long runs).  This time around, I found a program that worked for me, but also wrote it down on my calendar in PENCIL so that I could easily adjust if needed.  But you know what?  I didn't need to.  Barring anything that keeps me from my last 3 runs this week and/or the race (knock on wood), I will have done every single run on my schedule, despite sickness, exhaustion, and a whole host of other wrenches that were thrown into my days.  I feel pretty darn good about that!

Here's what this week's workouts looked like:

Monday: Rest.

Tuesday: 5 miles, easy pace.  Another humid Tuesday morning!  But it was a good run, 9:39 pace.

Wednesday: 10 x 400 intervals.
  Here it was: the speed workout I have been most afraid of the entire training cycle.  TEN intervals??  Three months ago, I never thought I could do it.  And honestly, this morning I didn't think I could either when I realized that my husband's tablet was OUT OF BATTERY!!
I plugged it in, but it was taking forever to even get enough charge to turn on.  Was I really going to have to do this treadmill run with nothing to watch?  That might be worse than actually doing the intervals...haha.

Thankfully, I got it up and running, and then it was interval time.  Half mile warmup, then 10 intervals at 5K pace with jogging in between.  I DID IT.  No walking.  I was totally beat at the end, but I really nailed this one.  I am proud of my speedwork this training cycle, but wow am I excited for NO MORE INTERVALS for a while!!   :)

Thursday: 3 miles easy pace.  Not much to report on this one.  A chilly morning run at 9:40 pace.

Friday: Rest.

Saturday: 3 miles @ race pace.  I saved this run for the evening (unusual for me) because I spent the day at the Rochester Air Show with Small Fry!

We had an awesome time watching the Blue Angels and other performers, checking out all the cool planes on display, and eating junky fair food.  However, by the end of it, we had been on our feet almost all day and I still had a run to do!  Small Fry was so tired, he fell asleep on the 10 minute bus ride from the show back to our car:

By the time I got out there post-dinner, my legs were dead weight and my pace was all over the place.  I had a really hard time finding my race pace stride, which is much different than the rest of the pace runs I've done lately.  However, I threw in a few hills and just did my best.  A bit too fast (9:34) but not bad.

Sunday: 7 mile long run.  This is the one modification that I made to the Hal Higdon training program I used.  He does not work a taper run in the week before race day--his plan calls for 12 miles the week prior.  However, I really felt like I needed a taper, so I decided to do a shorter run this week of 7 miles.  I want to do whatever I can to keep my legs fresh for next week.

This run started out pretty rough.  Three not-great things happened in the first half.  1) I started running and my music didn't play.  What?  I looked at my iPhone and saw Nike was tracking my mileage, but no music was coming out of the headphones.  I finally had to stop and investigate--turns out one headphone (I only wear one at a time when road running) was not working.  So I switched headphones and carried on.  This is super annoying though, because my husband just bought these for me LAST WEEK!  I have terrible luck with headphones.

Second problem: it was windy and I discovered that my new Under Armour shorts are not ideal for windy conditions.  They have a high cut up each side that flaps quite wide in a strong breeze.  Sorry, neighbors, for the show you got this morning (hey, at least I wore underwear).  But there was nothing I could do about it once I was out; I wasn't going back to change.  However, I quickly decided these will NOT be my race day shorts because they were so darn distracting for the entire run!

Third: I needed a bathroom break at 3.8 miles.  Sigh.  By the time I stopped for it, I realized I really needed an ego boost to make the second half of this run better.  So, even though it was supposed to be a taper long run, I decided to push the last 3.2 miles below race pace.  Really ramp it up and negative-split like whoa in order to build my confidence back up.  And I did!  My splits for this run were 10:16/10:10/10:15/10:01/9:27/9:03/9:07.  BOOM.  Owned.  Confidence restored.

7 days to go!

I am linking up again with Tara's Weekend Update at Running 'N Reading (a fantastic blog for runners and readers alike!!).  Check it out!

How was your running week, friends?

Anyone else have a race coming up next weekend??


  1. I am so impressed. I've never been a distance runner. I did sprints in high school. I just don't have the endurance and surely don't know how to learn it. May be too old at this point anyway! lol Go you!

    1. Never too old!! :) I am not a "natural" at this at took me many years of working at it to get to this point!

  2. Nice work! I love 400m intervals - they are my favorite. I train for shorter stuff, too, so my coach has me doing them at 5K - :40 seconds pace. They hurt but they really help. I find that I can't concentrate on TV while doing the high intensity workouts - I just do music and reserve the TV for my longer/base pace workouts on the bike trainer or treadmill. Good luck with your taper!!

    1. Oh yeah, 5K -40sec has got to hurt! After this race, my next goal is to get a 5K PR before the end of the maybe I need to try those out.

      I do OK concentrating on the tablet for the first 75% of the workout, after that I'm sweating so hard I usually need to turn it off!

  3. Look what you learned this week! I think that when things go wrong on a training run, you take that lesson to the start line with you. Sure beats wearing those shorts at the race and having them flapping and distracting you! What a great training run. You're going to do great, I know it!

    1. Thanks Wendy!! I can't believe it's only a few days away!

  4. I always wondered why Hal Higdon doesn't want you to taper before a half. I agree with your modification! I so impressed you did every single training run! Good luck! I can't wait to read about it.

    1. Yes, I found that odd as well. I used one of his training programs for a 15K several years ago, and I'm pretty sure there was a taper? Anyway, I'm glad I worked one in.

  5. Awesome job on negative splitting your long run!! And - I had 10x400 workout this week also (for my 10K coming up in 2 weeks) :) I cannot imagine doing that treadmill workout with nothing to read or listen to, so glad you got your tablet working! Good luck next week!!

    1. GOOD LUCK on your 10K! And way to go on your intervals!

  6. YAY!! It's finally here, Kelly, can you believe it?!? You've done such a great job with your training; I know this race is going to go well for you. Kudos to you for listening to your own body and making a decision to change up the training plan a bit; not everything works well for everyone, so it's great that you are making the necessary adjustments. I had to laugh about your shorts, though...sorry. :) That was too good a story! I'll be cheering for you, girl!! Can't wait! Thanks so much for linking up with the blog!

    1. You are completely entitled to a good laugh over my shorts. The thing is, I still like them and really want to wear them, because they look good on me...when the wind is NOT blowing. I wore them on a 2 mile run this morning and had the same problem. But I just could not resist putting them on. LOL.

  7. Impressive! You're going to OWN this race.


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