A few months ago I registered for my first half marathon. I decided to document the process of my training, hoping that it will help to keep me accountable to train strong. This is week eight.
Monday August 25 – Sunday August 31
Total Miles Planned: 22
Total Miles Ran: 32 total miles: 19 ran // 13 walked
Favorite Run: Totally a tie between the shortest and the longest.
A timed 1 mile in which I broke 9:00 – a 41 second PR from my fastest mile prior.
My 12-mile long run turned into a half marathon when I missed a turn and added about a mile onto my route. Major OOPS, but I now have no doubt that I will cross that finish line in October.
Least Favorite Run: Super hot and sweat 5 miles wog on Wednesday. I loved the run when it was over [averaged 10:37 while wogging 4:1 intervals,] but it was a STUGGLE to get out there and stay out there after a hard day at the office.
Other Workouts: LOTS more stretching than my normal. I’ve been trying to remember to spend a “distance-ratio” amount of time after each run stretching out and rolling with my Tiger Tail. This just means that I spend more time stretching and rolling after my mid-distance and long runs than I do with my short little zippy runs.
Listening Notes: I found a new podcast to run to, and I can’t believe it’s taken me so long to find it. Put Your Hands Together is a comedy show that takes place immediately following Doug Loves Movies at UCB each week, ergo I was very familiar with the name. I’ve also recently seen/heard PYHT host Cameron Esposito on a handful of shows and really dug her style. I added two recent episodes to my long run playlist and loved the experience of running while listening. Each show includes a collection of comedy sets and conversations, so it really helped break up the run into smaller chunks – always appreciated.
Fueling Notes: Can I get a “booyah!” for not vomiting after my long run? This seriously felt like a major victory after my last two post long-run experiences.
I believe the success came from fueling correctly before, during and after the run. I started with a piece of toast with Earth Balance coconut & peanut spread [the best!] with a glass of water about an hour before my run.
While running, I took a fuel break every 38 minutes. First: Honey Stinger Gold. Not bad at all – it’s what you would expect from honey, but less gooey. Second: GU CherryLime Roctane. I definitely prefer the Blueberry Pomegrante flavor – the CherryLime did not go down easy. Third: Gatorade Prime Sports Fuel Drink in Fierce Grape. This was surprisingly my favorite fuel experience to date. Both of the gels were a bit hard for me to swallow, so a pouch of liquid was a welcomed break from what often feels like run-snacking. I don’t know if I would be able to run on only Gatorade pouches, but I think a Gatorade and GU/Gel combo may be the way I go on race day. I also really like that I can get the Gatorade products at my local grocery store – super easy.
After the run I sipped some water and then poured myself a coffee-mug of chocolate milk which I enjoyed while stretching. After a shower, I drank half of a Post-Game Recovery Gatorade, but wasn’t crazy about the Mixed Berry flavor.
Also – a bunch of runner friends shared their favorite mid-run fuel while I was out running, and I’m going to be finding a few of their suggestions to try ASAP.
I’ve added a count down sign in my eyesight line at my office. It’s a visual reminder to HYDRATE for my evening runs and a queue to my co-workers why I’ll be walking slowly come October 13.
#THS13Point1 Reflections: I was asked for the first time last week if I had a time goal for the half marathon. I hadn’t thought about it before being asked, but I’ve been thinking about it during each run since.
Last weekends accidental half marathon rounded out at 2:33:16. I was running intervals according to my queues from my Gymboss timer, which I had set for an 18:2 run:walk, and was feeling pretty good throughout. [Also – holly cow! The Gymboss has really upgraded since I first bought mine. There are SO many colors and a MAX option!]
In running discussions before, I’ve admitted that I often feel a little lost when setting race goals. I don’t want to set unattainable goals and I also know I often have a hard time pushing myself to my limits. When it comes to clocking a specific time for a new race distance, I honestly feel a little fearful to call out numbers that I want to chase. While Rational Heather knows this is f-ing stupid, Self-Doubting Heather disagrees.
The truth is, goals like “crossing the finish line” are wonderful goals. But for me, at this time, after just clocking a 13.1 mile training run 42 days before race-day, that seems like it would also be a really wonderful SAFE goal. And I want to push myself to go after goals that take hard work – hard work is good for you!
I have been reading a little about setting A-B-C race goals, and I think this is a great fit for me – especially when facing a new race distance. ““A” is an achievable goal, “B” is a stretch and “C” would be essentially kicking butt and taking a few names.” – from Prairie Princess Runners. Setting ABG goals is on my to-do list for this week.
[This post from Monica is a good chat on Race Day vs Ultimate Goals, too: RunEatRepeat on Running Goal Setting]
How do you set goals for races?