Half Marathon Training: Week 3

Well, this week I did not have any reason to back off my training — at least not the one I was thinking of when I wrote last week’s post –, so I carried on mostly as planned. This was a slight step back week in terms of the long run, but the speedwork and tempo run were both increases from previous weeks. It all went surprisingly well.

Monday: Cross Training. Betty Rocker Days 17, 18, and 19. These workouts targeted the core, then total-body, then the posterior chain. I had to modify a few moves for my shoulder, but overall felt very capable during all three of these. It was a nice 45 minute session — and, spoiler, it turned out to be the only XT day I got in all week.

Tuesday: Speedwork, 4x800s (4.5 miles total). Dialed in 8:20 pace for the 800s and recovered at about 10:30. I did this on the treadmill because I am still a big fat chicken about taking my speedwork to the track. This coming week I have 1600s, but when I get to another 400 or 800 workout, I WILL go to the track, I promise. I just don’t want to start going on my first mile repeat workout, because chicken.

Wednesday: Rest. My plan this week was to rest on the days before my tempo and my long run, to reduce the chance I’d have trashed legs and not hit my paces. It worked pretty well, I think.

Thursday: Tempo Run, 5 miles (6 total). Dialed in my target 9:05 pace and hung on. I did this on the treadmill because last week’s tempo run had me feeling scared. It worked out fine, and this coming week I only have to do 4 tempo miles, so I am going to take it outside again and see if I can do better than in the past.

Friday: Rest. 

Saturday: Long Run, 6 miles. Target pace: 9:45-10:00. This run went much easier than my hilly 8-miler last week, when I was nowhere near my target pace. Even better, it was also much easier than my 6-miler from two weeks ago, when I did make my target pace but it felt a bit too hard. This week, I was actually ahead of pace for most of the run and finished with an average of 9:42 — and it felt easy and fun! I think this training plan just might be working, friends! I took this run out to the last 6 miles of the Auburn Classic course, which go through some neighborhoods at first but mostly loop around/through campus. This section of the course is much flatter than the section I ran last week, and thankfully it comes later in the race. I guess we’ll get most of the hills out of the way early and then cruise on in. Two things I learned about the course: 1) it takes you within sight of the finish area about 1.5 miles before the finish, and 2) it ends on a massively steep uphill — one I’ve complained about before. So, you know, it’s a typical Auburn race. As Britney would say, “you better work, bitch.”

Sunday: Rest. Sunday was supposed to be my second cross-training day of the week, but I woke up with a completely tweaked back, thanks once again to sleeping in a bad position to spare my sore shoulder. I could not do much of ANYTHING. Better to miss a cross day than a run day, though, right?

I ran a total of 16.5 miles for the week, slightly less than last week, and completed only 3 Betty Rocker workouts. Part of that is that it’s a step back week and part of that is my tweaked back. Things should change this coming week: I’ve got mile repeats, a four-mile tempo (outdoors!), and a ten-mile long run to look forward to. I haven’t run double digits in quite some time and — dare I say?! — I am excited.

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