Tag Archives: recovery week

Week 11 of Training for the Boston Marathon

I am late writing this post because I had the intention of writing it after my long run Sunday night but I ended up finishing that later than expected. Overall week 11 ended up being a bit of a recovery week with a total of 60 km. It is not what I originally set out to achieve last week but it is not the end of the world and in the end might actually end up being a good thing for me. 

The weather did not exactly cooperate with my planned schedule this week. It has not been an especially cold winter here but we seem to have experienced more frequent thawing and freezing cycles. That was certainly the story of this week. Early in the week we received more snow, making it hard to run at a consistent pace…

Following the snowfall early in the week it got warmer in time for the weekend caused the snow to melt during the day and puddles in the roads and sidewalks to freeze at night. The state of the sidewalks ended up having an impact on my long run last night.

I left the house with the intention of doing 30-32 km (18-20 miles). My run was going fine until I started to approach 20 km. At that point I found myself slipping more, especially when going around corners, because it was hard to see the thin sheets of ice on the sidewalks left by the snow that melted earlier in the day. In addition to that my hamstrings were starting to feel tight.

I hate cutting a workout short as much as any other runner but this was a case where I truly felt that there was nothing to be gained by staying out and forcing myself to hit my mileage target. By the time it reached 20 km I was not far from home and decided to head home earlier than expected. I finished with a 25 km run. While it was short of my initial target it was still a good run and I think I made the right decision to end it when I did.

With 8 weeks to go until Boston my goal is to aim for 4-5 weeks of heavy mileage before but start to taper. The fact that I have to get in some 30-32 km runs over that period should help me increase my mileage over the next few weeks.

How did your week go?

Saturday Stories


It is time once again for another edition of Saturday Stories, a collection of some of my favourite stories and blog posts from the past week.

As always, if you came across anything you feel is worthy of mention here feel free to post a link below. Here are this week’s stories…

An inspirational story here .

A post about returning to the Boston Marathon.

A post about the importance of recovery weeks.

Week 9 of Training for the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon


Another week of training is nearly complete. Week 9 was a recovery week after a few weeks of hard training. As a result my training was pretty light this week. That said, the recovery from taking it easy this week will be important to my training because my busiest weeks in terms of mileage are just ahead.

So far this week I have been for three runs, all using the same route and ending with the same distance. I know that is not very exciting and usually what I try to avoid but once again this week it was just more convenient for my mid-week runs. I do plan to switch that up starting with this evening’s run!

Tuesday’s run was the only run of the week so far where I pushed the pace with the following workout…

So far I have to say I am feeling pretty good with my training during this cycle. I feel like I have been able to push harder during my tempo runs and ending my last 3 long runs at marathon pace, especially the last 10 km of last Sunday’s 30 km run, has been an extra confidence booster.

Next week will kick off another 4 week block of training. I plan to continue to take it easy this weekend and enjoy the end of this recovery week but I am already looking forward to getting back to some tougher workouts next week.

How did your week go?

Week 16 of Training for the Ottawa Marathon


There is not much to be said about this week. As previously mentioned, last week was my biggest week of training so far in this training cycle. As a result, the focus this week was to recover from last week’s mileage.

This week has been a very quiet week. I only had three runs assigned and I have stuck with the plan.  I figure the recovery this week will be as important overall as the training last week so I was not tempted to try and fit in extra mileage this week.

So far I have only gone for two runs this week for a total of just under 18 km. Tomorrow I will fit in my last run of the week, an easy 10 km effort.  It is my lowest week in terms of mileage in a long while but again coming off last week I think it was well timed.

I will know what my plan is for next week once I receive it from my coach. With one month left before race day I am expecting there will be one more intense week of training left befoe the three week taper sets in. Included in that last big week of training will be my final 30 km training run of this cycle.

How did your week go?

Time for Recovery

Last week was my biggest week of training in terms of mileage so far in this training cycle. Starting with my last race, the Run for Reach half-marathon, on Sunday to my 34 km long run Saturday morning I managed to fit in just under 106 km.

Now this is not anything new for me, I have completed 100 km weeks in previous training cycles and I don’t think it was my biggest week ever. What makes this time different is that I am now scheduled for a recovery week this week.

In previous training cycles at this point in my training I would have pushed ahead for another big week right up until it was time to start my three week taper.

This time, as mentioned in previous posts, my coach has me working in four week blocks of training with three tough weeks followed by a week of recovery. It is an important aspect to training I may have been missing until I started working with my coach.

After not running yesterday and today I will get back at it tomorrow. Overall I only have three runs scheduled for this week, all of them at an easy pace. The goal for this week will simply be to allow my legs to recover from last week. Following that there will be time for another big week and a three week taper.

Week 5 of Training for the Ottawa Marathon

20140128-231837.jpgAfter 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 4 of Training for the Ottawa Marathon


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?

Week 3 of Training for the Ottawa Marathon


Another week of training is nearly complete. So far I have managed to fit in three runs this week. The week will end with 21 km and 8 km runs this weekend. The week got off to a slow start with me being unable to run Monday and Tuesday but it has been a solid week of training.

The return of really cold weather saw me head to the dome two nights in a row for the first time. I still prefer being able to run outside but when the windchill gets to -30C being able to run indoor at the dome is a great option to have. Without this option I likely would have had to postpone one of my runs.

Wednesday I went for a 7 km run with 8 x 40 second accelerations. Last night was time for my usual speed intervals with the workout of choice this time being 6 x 50m, 6 x 100m followed by 2 x 1 km at 3:40/km. This makes three weeks in a row I have done 50 and 100 m sprints. I find they make for a great workout and am pleased so far that my coach has me doing them.

As with my training cycle for Philadelphia, my coach also has me doing stretching/mobility and strength exercises. So far I am managing to keep up with doing each routine twice a week. As long as I continued I think this will be as beneficial to my training as the mileage I am putting in.

Next week will represent the last week of my first block of my training program meaning it will be a bit of a taper after three weeks of going hard. Following that I will start another four week block with three weeks of hard training and ending with a week of recovery.

How did your week go?

Week 10 of Training for the Philadelphia Marathon


Another week of training is nearly complete and I am another week closer to race day. This week was a recovery week following a few weeks of more intense training once again. What that really means is that now that I have had a recovery week the toughest part of my training starts next week.

The toughest workout this week was the speed workout I did. This week’s speed workout involved 100 m sprints at the track. This is not a regular workout for me but it is now the second I’ve done the workout, the previous time being the last time I had a recovery week. I still prefer running longer distances but the great thing about this workout is that it does not take long to fit in which was particularly useful this week because I had to postpone it from Tuesday to Wednesday.

Speaking of recovery weeks, it is another element I did not make much time for in my previous training cycles. I understand the idea behind how it can be of benefit to me but in my previous training cycles recovery weeks were not regularly scheduled every few weeks. Hopefully this is another new element to my training that will benefit me on race day.

My plan is to end the week with a 12 km run Sunday before picking up the pace in week 11. I will find out what exactly my coach has in store for me when he sends me my schedule for the next four weeks.

How did your week go?

Week 6 of Training for the Philadelphia Marathon


Another week of training is nearly complete. This week has been a recovery week following a few weeks of hard training. It was something recommended by my coach and something I probably did not make enough time for in my previous training.

This week has consisted of easy runs for the most part. My only run not done at an easy pace this week was Tuesday’s speed work consisting of 100 m sprints, something I have not included in my training in the past.

Other than my speed work my week also included two easy paced runs home from work. I still have one more run left for this week, a 12 km effort scheduled for Sunday. Next week will kick off a few more weeks of intense training following this week of recovery.

How did your week go?