Another week of training is nearly complete. This week it was back to full training after a week of recovery last week. That meant it was back to intervals and this week hills took the place of my Tuesday runs with accelerations.
As mentioned, hills were back on my schedule this week. It was the first time they were included in this training cycle. On the schedule was three repeats. Since we started getting snow late in the afternoon I had to go to a plan b for a hill as I looked for one that had been plowed. The conditions were still not ideal, it was difficult to get a good pace going up the hill because of the fresh snow. However, I completed the workout and it felt good to re-introduce hill repeats.
Last night it was back to speed intervals at the track. This week my assigned workout involved 500 and 1000 m intervals. This was another new workout for me. I think the workout went well. The real key is that I now have goals for the next two weeks, beating the times I set last night.
This week being the start of a new four week block of training I also started a new strength workout. Once again the exercises are aimed at building strength in my legs, upper body and core.
Tomorrow my plan is to get in my long run. This week I am going for 20 km. tomorrow I plan to change things up a bit in terms of my pace. I am planning to start out with an easy 5 km before picking up the pace over the remaining 15 km.
How did your week go?
Tonight I thought I would share a recipe I came up with myself, my choice of recovery smoothie after a hard run or strength workout.
It is pretty basic and simple to make but works for me. Our blender has been getting regular use since I started this training cycle.
You only need a handful of ingredients to make this. I use the following ingredients to make it:
- 1-1.5 cups of almond milk, vanilla or chocolate.
- a scoop of protein powder.
- 1 tsp of glutamine powder
- 1 tsp of pomegranate powder
- 1 tsp of cinnamon
- 1/2 cup of frozen berries – tonight I used mixed berries, strawberries are also a good option.
Hill repeats are an important workout to build strength in your legs during training. They were a big part of my training cycle for Philadelphia in the fall. I had hill repeats scheduled by my coach once a week, adding an extra one each week. In the fall I topped out at six or eight repeats.
So far in this training cycle I have not had hill repeats scheduled. As of tonight hill repeats are back on the schedule. I started off with three repeats tonight.
Usually my routine involves going up and down the hill at 100% with a break between repeats. I tried that tonight but with fresh snow on the ground the conditions were not ideal for that…
I managed to get in my three repeats. I might not have been able to push as hard as I normally would have but I was able to complete my workout and hill repeats are now back on my weekly schedule.
Do you include hill repeats in your training schedule?
Week eight was my second recovery week in this training cycle. As a result, there is not a lot to say about my training so far this week. I really only had one notable workout this week, last night’s effort at the track.
Other than last night’s effort my other workouts this week involved easy runs. Of course this was important because I was coming off three weeks of more intense training. The point of this week was to recover from those weeks.
Back to last night’s workout. You might recall that during my last recovery week my speed workout at the track involved a 3 km test at the track. Last night was a repeat of that workout. Last time I finished in 12:30, a time I was not thrilled with because I knew I was capable of more.
Last night my goal was to aim for under 12:00. Doing so would require 400 m laps in 1:45-1:46. I was successful in achieving that goal with a time of 11:40. Based on that result alone it was a good week of training.
Once I finish this week over the week it is time to start a new block of four weeks of training. I my my coach before heading to the track last night and now have my running and strength training routines for the next four weeks.
How did your week go?
Week 7 of training is nearly complete. Once again training this week was similar to the previous week given I had the same workouts scheduled. So far I have managed to fit in all of my scheduled runs for this week with the exception of the elusive Tuesday run I wrote about the other night.
I am starting to feel better about my training as I go on. I’ve been up over 20 km for my long runs the past two weeks so in addition to working on speed and strength I am now starting to build on my endurance. This upcoming Sunday will see me go up to 25 km so my 30 km runs won’t be that far away.
Speaking of long runs, I picked up a new hydration pack to use on my long runs. I was tired of fumbling with a handful of smaller bottles so instead I now have one item to fill and bring with me. The only problem is that my one year-old has already figured out how it works so if I leave it out she tries to get a drink from it.
Missing my Tuesday run means that I have not yet done my run with accelerations. That is my plan for tomorrow. Once again, I will be doing 30s, 45s, 60s and 90s accelerations twice. I just hope that after a day of rain and freezing rain the conditions outside won’t be too bad for it.
Once again I had another strong interval workout at the dome with 100, 200 and 300 m intervals on the schedule. I am pretty sure that I was pushing the pace harder than last week because I was feeling the 300 m sprints more by the time I finished them. Next week will be a bit of a change of pace at the dome since I will be doing a 3 km test instead of the usual intervals.
How did your week go?
Since I started my training cycle for the Ottawa Marathon Tuesdays have been pencilled as my day for fitting in an 8 km run with accelerations. However, this run is proving to be the most difficult run to fit in as per my schedule. It is a bizarre trend that has developed in my weekly training.
For a variety of reasons, week after week I just cannot seem to fit in this run. What keeps happening is that I end up with an extra day of rest after my scheduled day of rest on Mondays.I’ve had the best of intentions to fit in this run but whether it is because I was busy at work or busy at home after work I am finding myself having to postpone this run.
It is not such a big deal since I have been able to delay the run to later in the week it is funny how this trend has developed. In order to make up for the missed Tuesday run I have either been running twice one day per week or I have been running on Fridays when I also do not have a scheduled run.
In the end maybe it is not such a bad thing that I keep taking Tuesday off from running. Since I am doing my strength exercises on Mondays, the day after my long run, Tuesday is giving my an actual day of rest. Tonight when it became apparent I would not fit the run in I got out my foam roller and also did some yoga stretches. I figure that for this reason the trend cannot be that bad if it keeps up.
Do you find yourself developing trends like this in your training schedule?
Week six is nearly complete. In terms of training this week was very similar to last week in that I had the same workouts scheduled. As a result, my key workouts were once again my Tuesday run with accelerations and my intervals at the track last night.
My Tuesday 8 km runs with accelerations are a good challenge because I want push the pace when I am accelerating but at the same time I don’t want to push too hard that I am going to struggle for the rest of the run since I am going for 8 km. This is more difficult when I am doing 60 and 90 second accelerations.
Once again my interval workout at the dome was a tough but good one. Like last week I did 4 x each of 100m, 200m and 300m. Having done the workout last week I think I had a better feel last night for the pace I could run 200m and 300m intervals. My legs felt heavy and I was gasping for air at the end of my last interval so I think it was a good workout.
How all that is left for this week is an easy run home in the snow tonight, sicne it has been snowing most of the day, followed by easy runs tomorrow and Sunday. My long effort will probably end up being Sunday morning. I’ll be going for 21 km this time.
How did your week go?
After a recovery week last week it was back to regular training this week. Week five is nearly complete now. With 29 km complete so far this week I will end the week this weekend with 15 and 8 km runs. Fortunately we were back to average weather for this time of year this week so my outdoor workouts were not too difficult to get in.
Like in previous weeks my more intense efforts came on Tuesday and Thursday this week. Tuesday is my run where I include accelerations in an 8 km run. This week called for 2 x 30s, 45s, 60s and 90s. This workout is tougher than it sounds because it takes a bit of time to recover from the 60 and 90 second accelerations when pushing the pace.
I won’t spend too much time discussing last night’s intervals since I talked about them in last night’s post. What I will say is that the combination of 100, 200 and 300 m sprints is one of the toughest workouts I have done so far. The good news is that I made it through them without getting injured.
This week also saw me start a new strength workout that I will continue for the next four weeks. This one builds on the previous one with exercises to work on my legs, core and upper body. It is a tougher workout than the one I did over the previous four weeks.
That’s another week of training nearly complete. Once again I managed to fit in all of my scheduled workouts while avoiding any injuries or setbacks.
How did your week go?
Week four was the first of the recovery weeks in my training schedule. As mentioned last week, this training schedule is being divided into blocks of four weeks with the last one being a recovery week. This week I had just one intense workout scheduled which ended up being last night’s effort at the dome.
The biggest news this week was probably the fact that I met my coach to go over the next four weeks of training so now I knows what lies ahead for my next training block. In terms of running I have four more weeks of training that will include even more short sprints during my speed workouts. In addition, I have a new schedule of strength exercises to keep up with.
In terms of training this week, I mentioned that my only intense workout was last night’s effort at the dome. The workout on my schedule was a 3 km test. After a warm up the plan was to run 3 km as hard as I could. In the end the result was not bad but not quite what I expected. I finished it in 12:30, a time that I know I can beat. I finished strong by picking up the pace over the last 2.5 laps but I started off slower than I realized and could not recover. It is a lesson learned and a mistake I won’t make in four weeks when I do my next 3 km test in four weeks.
Next week it is back to more intense training with more mileage and more intense speed workouts scheduled for the next three weeks. I know the recovery this week was necessary but I am looking forward to getting back to more intense training before i do my next 3 km test in my next recovery week.
How did your week go?
The last four years I have travelled out of town to run a fall marathon. After having a good time in Philadelphia last year I was hoping to be able to do that again this year. For a little over a week now I have had my sights set on the the option I want to do in the fall.
My decision was made after the Chicago Marathon announced its registration process for this year. While many people have been debating the choice to opt for a lottery another aspect caught my eye, direct entry via time qualifier. According to the new process, men can gain direct entry if they have run a sub 3:15 marathon on or after January 1 2012. That means my time here in Ottawa qualifies me for direct entry.
My wife and I have nit been to Chicago before and it was on our list of cities to visit and now we have an excuse to go this year. It is also one of the major marathons in the world and of the American ones Boston is still a work in progress for me and New York might not be attainable given the tighter qualifying standards and cost involved with running the New York City Marathon.
Chicago will be an amazing experience both in terms of running and visiting. There will be plenty to see and race day will be equally as impressive. Both times I ran the Philadelphia Marathon The first thing I ate after I finished was a cheesesteak. In Chicago I plan to find the best place for deep dish pizza and make that my first stop after I get showered and changed.
Of course Chicago will not be a cheap trip either, considering we will need to pay for airfare and accomodations. That means I will have to find a way to finance the trip. Starting now I am saving all of my change and rolling it. This money will go into my Chicago fund that I will cash in before the marathon in October. Hopefully between now and then I will be able to put away a decent amount to help pay for the cost of the trip.
Now that I have identified my plan to run the Chicago Marathon I would be interested in hearing any feedback you may have both in terms of running the marathon and visiting the city.