Chicago Marathon Training, week 4 recap

I’ve made it one month into Chicago Marathon training! Woohoo!

This week was once again pretty good, but the temps & humidity here are starting to get a little tougher. I’ve found that juggling around my runs during the week, so I can save my longer runs for days that aren’t so rough, helps tremendously. Here’s this week’s recap:

 

Sunday, July 9th: Rest day

AKA lots of cleaning and painting the new house again, kind of exhausting for a rest day.

 

Monday: 60 minute cross-train

Matt decided to bike along with me, but we only got about 25 minutes in before a massive downpour began. Luckily we made it home just in time to beat the rain. I finished up with some hip & core work, and called it a day.

 

Tuesday: 3 miles • 10:32/mile

Running Club night! We had our monthly meeting at a park that has several miles of paved bike trail and unpaved off-road trails. Unfortunately, it rained a lot during the day so we didn’t get to off-road unless we wanted to look like swamp people, but the 3-miler on the paved trail was a nice change of scenery. The humidity was killer, though. It seemed like it took me an hour to stop sweating.

 

Wednesday: 6 miles • 10:49/mile

Met up with a friend for this run along Lake Michigan. We took it easy and chatted most of the way, which kept our mile splits pretty consistent between 10:43—10:52. I was tending to start out runs way too fast a few weeks ago, so I am glad I’ve been able to even my pace more.

 

Thursday: 3 miles • 10:35/mile

Ran the same paved trail as I did on Tuesday with my preggo co-worker. Chatty & relatively easy pace, enjoyed the company!

 

Friday: Rest day

Ah, rest days, how I love you. I get out of work at lunchtime in the summer, so I invited a friend over that I haven’t been able to hang out with in a while. We laid out on the beach and had a couple beers and caught up. Rest day indeed. The sunburn and probable dehydration weren’t really smart prep for the long run Saturday morning, though…

 

Saturday: 11 miles • 10:56/mile

[Thus follows a long recap for a long run…]

My long-run-buddy, Liz, and I met up at 6:30am to start our run, hoping to beat some heat and finish early. We split the run into two parts: A 5-miler out-and-back that took us north along Lake Michigan, and then a 6-miler out-and-back to the south.

It was a pretty morning to run. The early sun on the lake is always beautiful. Although, we thought this scene was a little too Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds” on the beach.

Early morning running by the beach. Look at all those seagulls!

Look at all those seagulls!

It’s so peaceful to run in the early morning. A solo fisherman sat, waiting.

Early morning company

Early morning company

And you never know what you might see along the way…

A deer on the beach, that's a first!

A deer on the beach, that’s a first!

The first five miles went by decently, with a couple stops at a bathroom and water fountains. When we got back to our cars to head south for 6 miles, though, for some reason I found myself thinking, “Ugh, that was only five miles and we still need to go six more?” I grabbed my hand-held water bottle to bring with me, and ate a couple energy chews, hoping that would make me feel better. I just felt a bit sluggish, and the miles seemed so long.

Our first five mile splits were at 10:30, 10:31, 10:46, 10:46 and 10:41. The following six mile splits were 11:19, 11:13, 10:42 (when we finally felt back ‘in the groove’), 11:21, 11:22 and 11:01. Definitely a bit slower. I think the heat was starting to get to us. I should have carried my water & hydrated during the first five miles, not just the last six. My running buddy also suffers from tight hammies, so she had to stretch them out a few times while I just slowed wayyy down so I didn’t have to stop, but she could still catch up. It’s always hard to get going again after stopping, for me.

All in all, we got the run done, and I felt pretty decent afterwards. My legs were achy during the last few miles, but that went away after I stretched out well and got an iced coffee in me. I don’t feel sore at all today and my knees feel good (which I always monitor, thanks to IT band issues of the past). Considering this was my longest run since the end of January, when I ran a half marathon, I’m happy!

 

This week’s schedule:

  • Sunday: 60 minutes cross train
  • Monday: rest
  • Tuesday: 3 miles
  • Wednesday: 6 miles
  • Thursday: 3 miles
  • Friday: rest
  • Saturday: 12 miles

 

Let me know: How were your runs this week? How do you make the long runs feel better or go by faster?

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