Historic Half Marathon training: Week 2 recap

So last week was my first official week of half marathon training.  Here is what I was supposed to do:

10 mi long run easy
1mi easy, 3 mi tempo, 1mi easy
6 x 800m with 90 sec recovery.

Strength train 2 days.

Here is what my week looked like.
Monday – Strength training.  I did 3 sets of 10-15 repetitions of squats, lunges, mountain climbers, bicep curls, triceps extensions, bench pressing with free weights, clamshell, single leg bridge, and 30 second planks and side planks.  Unfortunately, after doing the strength training (and my long run the day before), my left IT band and just under my knee cap really started to bug me.  There was a trace amount of swelling around my knee, and my IT band just felt really tight.  I’ve had issues with that before.  I may have over done it with the leg work today, and I didn’t really stretch at all after my 9 miler the day before since I was dashing trying to get to church.

Tuesday –  Rest day.  My leg is still bugging me, not helped by the fact that we spent 3 hours in the car driving to Cary, NC to visit a dear friend and spend a few days with Hubby as he finishes his final work class.

Wednesday – Still resting.

Thursday – Still resting.  My IT band is feeling better, but my knee still bugs me with some point tenderness but no bruising or swelling.  Traveled back home!  Could have gone for the tempo run, but the weather was kinda crappy and I was utterly exhausted.  Despite the fact that I slept amazingly at the hotel – Baby Thunder actually let me sleep 8+ with only 1 interruption! – I was ready to fall asleep before 10pm.  Who knew that traveling with two kids 2 years old and under is a tad stressful and utterly exhausting!

Friday – Track workout: 6x800m with 90 second recovery interval.  Little Man was so excited to hear me talk about “going to the track” that he asked to come along.  Since this is spring break, I thought the local high school would be available.  But apparently at 11:15am, there was a track practice going on until noon.  So, I drove to another track.  Which was locked.  But, third time’s the charm!  I popped over to the middle school right next to the locked track and lo and behold, they had a 400m gravel track!  Without a fence!  So, Little Man played with his football and in the long jump sand pit while I ran.  I should have done the 800m in 3:50, but instead my times were 3:44, 3:43, 3:46, 3:38, 3: 52, 3:42.  I still have a really hard time figuring out how to pace myself that specifically.  Ideally, my times would be within +/- 1 second of each other.  Hopefully one day I will figure it out.

Little Man watching me
Little Man playing in the sand pit

11149454_10153299771096162_6506055443008924610_nIn an effort to prevent injury, I did the dreaded, hated ice bath after my track workout.  The theory is that the ice will help decrease the swelling and inflammation associated with hard efforts and long runs, thereby speeding recovery and preventing injury.  However, it is a most uncomfortable experience.  You sit in the tub and fill it with cold water.  Once it reaches the tops of your thighs, you add scoops of ice.  Sit for 5-10 minutes, or as long as possible.  I bought a 10 pound bag on my way home.  I almost got a 20 pound bag by accident, and I’m so glad I didn’t!  I don’t think I could have handled it.  There were several choice and somewhat socially unacceptable words that I kept shouting in my mind as I endured this torturous recovery tool.  Oh, the things we runners do…  I’m still icing my knee twice a day.  I really need to also start foam rolling and might even invest in some KT tape again…

Note:  If you do this at home, wear a hoodie or as many layers for your torso and head as possible and drink something hot – coffee, tea, hot chocolate, anything!  And DO NOT under any circumstances fill the tub with the ice water and then immerse yourself.  I did that my first time by mistake, and every lower muscle was cramping horribly.  It took me 20 minutes to actually sit down.

Saturday – Strength training – Arms and Abs. I did 3 sets of 10-12 reps with 10lb free weights of:  bench press, bicep curls, triceps extensions, and overhead press.  I also did full and side planks 3 times for as long as I could (I didn’t time them).

My new fashion accessory

So, my new fashion accessory is KT Tape Pro.  This stuff is the bomb!  I have used it in the past for IT band issues, plantar fasciitis, ab strains, and runner’s knee.  Fortunately, I haven’t had to use it in over a year, but I finally identified that weird left knee pain as “shin splints”, specifically the tibialis anterior thanks to a post from Lucky Foot.  As such, I bought a pack of KT tape Pro at Target in a continued effort to promote healing.  And yes, it is pink.  It was slim pickings color-wise, and the pink matches my running shoes.  Don’t judge.  They didn’t have my lime green.  I’ll let you know it turns out!

Sunday – Tempo day!  It was a gorgeous sunny 70 degrees this afternoon, so what else is a sun-loving girl to do?  Hubby joined me on his unicycle while I pushed both boys for the 3mi tempo run.  Yes, my awesome man has a unicycle and can ride it for 3.7 miles.  Be jealous.  🙂  I did 3.65 miles in 35 minutes, averaging a 9:35 pace.  The short tempo should have been about a minute faster at 8:29, but I was pushing both boys in the stroller uphills.  Multiple hills.  Overall, I was fairly pleased with the performance.

This week, I will be making the 489 mile trip from Richmond, VA to Mount Vernon, OH with both boys.  By myself.  For someone who tends to over-think things, this feels quite daunting.  Can anyone say freak out!?!??!?!?!  The farthest I’ve ever driven by myself is to Cary, NC (which is 188 miles).  Needless to say, I’m trying really hard not to wig out too much about this.  I have decided to break up the trip into two legs – leaving Wednesday night after my Bible study to drive to Hagerstown, MD and spend the night at one of Hubby’s aunt’s house.  We will then leave Thursday morning and complete the rest of the 5 hour drive to my in-law’s house in Mt. Vernon.  We will split our time between their house and my sister-in-law’s in Columbus until Monday.  We will visit my in-laws and familiarize ourselves with our home-to-be.

I will definitely be running this week.  Since I missed my long run this past week and am battling a potential injury, I’ll probably bump the miles down a little bit.  Here’s what the next week should look like:
3 x 1600m (60 sec RI)
1mi easy, 5mi long tempo, 1mi easy
10mi Half Marathon Pace (HMP) + 20 seconds


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