While Monday was the first day of week 6, it also marked the end of my first full month of training for the 2014 St. George Marathon. As for the run itself, Nathan, Brian, and I did a relatively chill-paced 8-miler on the Harpeth River Greenway, starting at the Morton Mill parking lot. The heat and humidity continued to be nasty, even at 5am! I guess this is going to be the way of things until mid-September.
Anyway, my legs were pretty tight at the beginning, but gradually felt better throughout. Except for mile-4, this was a progression run, with each mile faster than the previous. Here’s a breakdown of the splits:
All-in-all, this was a good way to start week 6. As for the finish of my first full month of training, my total for June came out to 188-mile. This was my highest mileage month since January 2013 (when I had over 225). The crazy thing about this month is that my longest run was 10-miles. I don’t think I’ve ever had a month over 175-miles, where my longest run was 10-miles or less. Definitely a different approach with the Hansons Method:
I had been dreading this run for TWO WEEKS. The schedule called for a “long” run of 12-miles at 8:05 to 8:25 pace per mile. Nathan and I started from the Edwin Warner Park Nature Center at 5am, and the plan was to do 3 loops of 4-miles so we could grab fluid at the Nature Center. I knew Nathan would only be able to do the first two loops with me due to an early meeting, but I was happy for the company for as long as I could get it.
Anyway, I did several things wrong in preparing for this run. This included:
- Only getting 4-hours sleep the night before – I had an event on Monday evening, and didn’t get home until very late
- Not taking Gatorade or Gu with me for the run – I was thinking that since this would be less than 2 hours, I would be fine. WRONG!
- Trying to get away without a cary bottle for fluids – I was tired of carrying fluids on every run, so I was hoping that stopping at the Nature center every 4-miles would be sufficient.
So with that as the background, let’s get to the run. I started off fine, and my legs actually felt fairly fresh and strong. We finished the first 4.4-miles on the greenway and in the park, and our average pace was squarely within the target range. The humidity was nasty, but it was still a good first loop.
For the second loop we veered off the greenway and went into the surrounding neighborhoods before eventually returning to finish the loop on the greenway. This loop started off pretty good, and we were on pace, but my legs suddenly started feeling pretty fatigued during mile 7. I still finished mile 7 in 8:32, but during mile 8 the wheels came completely off the bus, and I had to take a break to get my heart-rate under control (I bonked). Nathan had already started to pull away from me during mile-7, and he went completely out of site as I stopped.
Everything inside of me was screaming to just walk back to the Nature Center and just call it a day. However, I was determined that I was going to finish the run even if I had to slow my pace waaaaaay down. Well, using this approach, I slowly ticked off the final 4 miles. These were brutal, and I had to take a couple of additional breaks, but I did finish:
This was easily one of the top 10 most difficult training runs I’ve ever completed. It’s no mystery why it was so hard, with all of the factors I listed above, however it was no fun to pay the price. Even with this awful run, I’m still pleased that I finished and that my last mile was back below 9:00. Not sure how that happened, but I’ll take it.
I decided not to run in the morning since I really needed to catch up on my sleep. I ended up squeezing it in between work and mid-week Bible study. It was fairly hot (90º), but the humidity was down just a bit. My schedule called for 6-miles at “easy” pace, so I decided to start from Morton Mill parking lot for a run on the Harpeth River Greenway.
I figured that my legs would be trashed after the rough 12-miler yesterday, but they felt fantastic. All but one of my scheduled 6-miles was under 9:00 splits:
This was an unexpected result today, but I’m happy to have recovered nicely after yesterday’s run. 26-miles completely this week leading into tomorrow night’s “speed” workout.
In addition to the these runs, I also got in the following cross-training exercises today:
- Standard Pushups (35 reps)
- Military Pushups (17 reps)
- Wide Pushups (40 reps)
- Decline Pushups (35 reps)
- Diamond Pushups (10 reps)
Total = 137 reps
by Stone Temple Pilots
“I dare you to train for a marathon, and not have it change your life.”