Chicago Marathon Training: Week 11 Recap

I know this is late, but can I still get some credit for this?

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Oh boy, to say it’s been tough adjusting is an understatement. Going back to work, two toddlers, and a traveling husband has made training that much harder lol! I still try to be productive though, so there’s that. :)

Monday I took the day off. I should’ve gotten on the bike….but I didn’t.

Tuesday I met up with some friends for a run. Most though, did 3 miles, but I added another for funsies. It was a hot one at 102 degrees but I managed a good pace of 9:29 and that pleased me.

Wednesdays are track days and these have been tough. I get so caught up socializing that by the time I actually start my workout, the hour is almost up and I gotta go home. I managed 2 miles of speed work and I had to go.

It was another 102 degree run on Thursday for my 5 miler but again, I was still able to maintain a great pace of 9:24 and I was happy. I started my run an hour later than usual and I really feel that helped–not having the sun hovering that is.

Friday was my usual rest day and it was spent thinking about

my long run Saturday. I had a 2:45 a.m. alarm wake-up. Yes, you read that right. I was gonna be meeting up with other crazies at 3:30 for an 18 miler. The plan was to run 8 by 5 o’clock to meet up with the rest of our run club.

Those 8 miles went by without a hitch and I was feeling good. It was humid as all hell but I managed to get by and still maintain a good long, slow distance pace.

Temp stats at 3:30 in the morning

Temp stats at 3:30 in the morning

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I reached the meet-up spot just before 5 a.m. where I stopped to wait for everyone to arrive. It was about a 10 minute or so break and I wondered how this would affect the rest of my run. I had felt that I was on a roll (despite the last 3 miles being on the slower end of my LSD pace) and was warmed up.

It wasn’t too long before we got going but sure enough, I could feel the break messing with my mojo and I struggled the first few miles.

It helped having my crew though. I had convinced 3 of my buddies to run 10 miles with me (none of them are training for anything!) and keep me company. They were amazing at keeping me going after that rough start.

I got back in my groove when we headed turned around after the 5 mile mark (mile 13 for me) and the last 5 of my 18 felt great. This made me so happy since it was at the end of my run and then Runner Jenny even convinced me to run my last mile fast–Mile 18, 9:32!! Boo-yah!!

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I was on cloud nine especially when I thought about last week’s awful 12 miler. This one was such a confidence booster! I took no breaks the first 8 miles I ran solo and in the 10 miles following, I stopped twice– once for a potty break and once to fuel (the other times I fueled, I did it on the run). It was important for me to not stop a lot as I want to practice running continuously. So I’ve been training fueling on the run and preparing myself mentally to minimize any stopping.

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Crazy is running at 3:30 in the morning.

When I got home, my husband had a fabulous ice bath ready for me and luckily, I didn’t feel too bad the rest of the day. I was even able to squeeze in a 2 mile run the following day, Sunday.

Overall, it was a great week (31.16 miles) and one I really needed after a previous week on the struggle bus. Now, I’m almost done with Week 12 and Chicago is getting closer and closer! Eeeep!!!

I hope everyone had a great weekend!! Who’s long running? Who’s racing?? <3 , helly

–Do you take stop breaks during long runs?

–What’s the earliest you’ve woken up to go run?

Giddy Up and Go!!! MRTT Summer Virtual Race Recap

I mentioned in my previous post how last Sunday I met up with my Moms Run This Town ladies.

A little backstory on MRTT: I started my city’s chapter a little over a year ago having no clue what to expect. I was sorta involved in neighboring cities but thought that having one in mine would be fun (and convenient) so I went for it.

Over 150 women later, my chapter has become very active and super fun. It’s been a blast to see the group grow and meet people starting their fitness journey, coming back from a hiatus, or trying out a “run club” for the first time.

We have weekly meet ups on Sundays, but because both my husband and I are currently training, I’m not always able to attend (I’ve been long running Saturdays and my husband Sundays). I do have an amazing co-leader who has been instrumental in helping the group grow and making our meet-ups successful though.

With her help, I finally felt like our chapter was ready to take on a summer virtual race. MRTT national hosts two virtuals a year, one in summer and one in winter. I passed last winter as I was reluctant (and really, still a newb) to take on such a task. But with my buddy Jennifer, this summer I was in.

The theme was “Giddy Up and Go!” and the medals were suh-weet!!

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A lot goes in to making a race happen (and this was a suuuuper small one, lol!) and organizing was tough, but after months of planning, last Sunday, we were finally able to see the fruits of our labor. And it was….AWESOME.

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We had such a great turnout for our first!

Jen and I created swag bags that our runners would receive (and swag for their littles if they ordered medals for their kids!), mapped out a 5k course, and even had bananas, oranges, and water as post race fuel.

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Everyone loved our swag! We had MRTT colored bandanas, headbands, an MRTT magnet, and really cool drinkable glass jars (that had chalk tops to write on!). Inside the jar were hair ties, a rubber MRTT bracelet, running fuel, and a discount card to a local burger joint.

I decided not to race and take pictures for the runners. That way, they could get free race pictures ;)

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I also wanted to be at the end so that when they’d cross, I’d be able to medal them. The mom who finished first was so excited that she was the first to cross, saying that she’d never finished a race first in her life. It was so cool to see her excitement :)

All in all, it was so much fun and even though it was super tough behind the scenes, the big day was such a success that yes, I’d do it all over again <3

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–Have you ever organized a race?

–Have you run a virtual race before?

I hope everyone has a great weekend!! Who’s racing? Who’s long running? (I’ve got 18!! Eeek!) <3 , helly

Chicago Marathon Training: Week 10 Recap

Yeah, so this work thing…

It has been pretty crazy having started work and trying to fit in marathon training, kids, and life….can I go back to summer vacation please??

Last week I was still able to squeeze in a few runs despite my new, busy schedule.

I replaced my bike cross training on Monday and picked up a 5 miler with a buddy. It was a scorcher (it was only 100 degrees but felt waaay worse) and my legs were still a little tired from the Humphreys Hike but we gotter done.

Tuesday I met up with a local group for a quick 3 miler that was way tougher than usual. It coulda been the Nikes I tested–it was Nike demo night. They. felt. AWFUL. Despite the throbbing I felt, I still managed to average a sub 9 pace. But yeah, Nikes will def remain fashion footwear only.

Chalking these up as a big, fat NO.

Chalking these up as a big, fat NO.

Despite feeling the back to school fatigue, I made it out to track on Wednesday for some more Yasso’s. I wanted to increase my sets as I’d been doing 6x800s and wanted to go 8. I did a mile warm up (which I hadn’t been doing other times) and got started. It was another ridiculously hot day

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and it honestly felt worse than on last week’s excessive heat warning days. These were by far the hardest Yassos I’d done to date. They weren’t pretty at all.

4:00, 4:02, 3:56, 4:01, 4:04, 4:06, 4:01

and I missed the 8th. Total TMI but I had to use the restroom.

I was bummed because I really wanted 8 and I also really wanted to do a mile cool down but when you gotta go, you gotta go (and I wanted to go at home.)

The plan was to bike on Thursday since I moved my run to Monday but by the time Thursday came, I was over everything. It was record breaking heat at 117 degrees and there was no way in hell I was going outside.

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Since 2013….2 years ago…

Fridays are my typical rest days and I relished it. It was another scorcher.

I had 12 on the schedule Saturday with 3 miles at Marathon Goal Pace (which I still haven’t fully decided what that is). I set my alarm for 3:30 a.m. so I can meet up with other crazies at 4.

I ran 5 miles with them and felt pretty good but when we met up with the five o’clock crew, I started going downhill. I don’t know if it was stopping mid-run like that or if the heat was getting to me (it was 88 degrees at 4 in the morning!!), but I was not feeling the run anymore. At all.

Mile 6 was a get-it-together mile before my MGP would start and I didn’t hit the mark with any of them at 9:18, 9:30, 9:18. I had been shooting for a 9:15 so I was technically close with two miles but they were major struggle buses. In fact, after those three miles, it was just a make it back to the car run at that point. I registered two 10:30s and an 11 minuter getting my butt back. It was awful.

So awful that when I was done, I sat down on the curb and shed a few tears. I think I was just tired and overwhelmed from life, work, and training and quite frankly, I think I just needed a good cry. I felt a lot better afterward (and after a good convo with friends).

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I had a big day the next day, Sunday morning, with my Moms Run This Town group which I’ll detail later. I didn’t run but it was a very fun, eventful day. Just what I needed after my previous tough long run.

And that was my week– 24.5 miles. Despite the bad long run, I was very pleased I was able to get some good runs in my first week back at work.  I knew that it was going to be tougher; I just need to make sure I carry the momentum of a long summer of hard work.

#igotthis

–How was your running week? Ever run in 117 degree weather (not me!)?

–Ever cried after a run/race?

–How do you recover after a less than stellar run?

I hope everyone has a great week!! <3 , helly