Monday, August 18, 2014

Philadelphia Half Marathon Training: Week 5

This week's update comes to you from Driggs, Idaho where we are vacationing with some of our best friends from Charlotte in the shadow of the Grand Tetons.

Week 5 started off on the wrong foot but ended on a high note. Sunday night as we walked to Lauren's birthday dinner, I was hit with a sudden wave of nausea. Over the next 48 hours whatever illness I had left me completely dehydrated and drained of energy. Fortunately, it went away as quickly as it came and with adjustments to my training plan, lots of sleep and constant water and electrolytes, I was able to pick up exactly where I left off.

Monday: 6 easy miles in Central Park. Easy is really not appropriate for this run. I was feeling quite sick and just wanted this to be over. I did 30 minutes of core when I got home then collapsed in bed until work.

Tuesday: Run fail. As soon as I started this run I knew I shouldn't have. I stopped and restarted three times in eight minutes before finally listening to my body and walking home to sleep for three more hours until work.

Wednesday: 14 miles with eight miles at 5:55 pace on the West Side Highway. This was originally supposed to be the day I did my primary workout for the week, but given the past two days, Terry and I agreed that it might be too aggressive coming off an illness. I did my secondary workout instead which was a medium long run with the eight middle miles at somewhere in the neighborhood of 6:00 pace. As soon as I started running I was surprised by how much energy I had. Apparently two days of rest not only helped beat the illness, they also rejuvenated tired legs. 5:55 pace came easy and on the cool down I still had plenty left in the tank.

Thursday: 9 miles along the Hudson River north. I've been experiencing a bit of Central Park fatigue. Today, I decided to head North along the Hudson for the first time in a long time. It's a beautiful run with views of the George Washington Bridge, the Little Red Lighthouse and the New Jersey Palisades. 30 minutes of core.

Friday: 9.5 miles in Central Park. The best way to beat Central Park fatigue is to go off the beaten path. Allie was searching for some places to do intervals so we went to some of my favorite spots. Before I knew it, the run was over and it was time for six 20 second strides.

Saturday: 3x3 miles at 17:01, 17:00 and 16:19 with a half-mile at 6:30 pace in between each set. This was the workout that gave me butterflies from the first time I saw it on my calendar.  I did not want it to be hanging over my head all week, but because I had to delay until Saturday it was. Fortunately, my Urban Athletics teammate Tom was willing to join me as this is not an easy workout to do solo. We did the first two intervals in exactly 5:40 pace as planned. The entire time I was worried about being able to go significantly quicker on the last set. Yet, somehow both Thomas and I found the extra gear to put a solid finish on a successful workout. The total mileage for the day was 19, my highest since the winter.  After the run, I ate a donut and sat in a tub full of ice.

Sunday: 5 mile death march in Driggs, Idaho. The combination of no sleep, eight hours of traveling across the country, yesterday's workout and 6,400 feet of elevation made this a pretty terrible run. But, it's beautiful out here and I'm excited to get in some solid runs in the mountains and on the trails.

Total mileage: 63.7 with the unplanned day off.

Beer of the Week:  Grand Teton Brewing Amber

When in Rome. This brewery is less than 10 miles from where we are staying, but their beers are distributed throughout the region. The Amber is probably the most basic of the beers they make. I've tried an American Pale Ale, a Brown Ale and a Weiss that are pretty awesome. But after a long day of travel and a tough run, this was the most refreshing drink in the fridge. And since I am typing this on my ipad, here is a ginormous picture of the bottle.

Next week: Mountain miles, hikes and lots of beer!!

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