Week 9 of Training (Feb 28 – March 6)

Monday: REST / Unsuccessful car shopping with John

Tuesday: 5 miles on Treadmill
This run was a brutality. I had been cranky all day (starting when I missed the bus in the morning) and running on the treadmill magnified my crankiness. I was way too warm, annoyed and tired. It was a bad run, but I got through it, despite wanting to quit many many times.

1 mile (10 min/mile)
4 miles (9:20 min/mile)

Wednesday: Spin class – 1 hour

Thursday: 6 miles on Treadmill
This run was a little better than Tuesday’s, but it was a still a tough one to get through. I just don’t like the treadmill this week.

1 mile (10 min/mile)
1 mile (9:30 min/mile)
1 mile (9 min/mile)
1 mile (8:30/mile)
1 mile (9 min/mile)
1 mile (9:30 min/mile)

Friday: Rest

Saturday: 13.1 (1:59:10) Run for the Honeywagon Half Marathon
My dad and I  signed up for this half marathon many weeks ago with the goal of finishing in under two hours. Since my runs on Tuesday and Thursday were both pretty terrible, I was a little nervous/curious how I would do in this race.

The run was in Everson, which is a farm town about 30 minutes away from Bellingham. We arrived an hour before the run to pick up our running bibs, take a few pictures and discuss our race strategy. Even though it was a tiny race (about 150 runners), I was nervous. Finishing in under 2 hours was very important to me, and I really wanted to achieve that goal.

Before the run!

Our strategy for the run was to start off slow (between 9:30- 10 min/mile) to warm up and then ramp up to 9 min/miles. Well, that didn’t totally work out. We ran our first two miles at about 8:30-8:40 min miles, and I was a little winded by the time we reached the water stop at mile 2. We decided to slow it down and reach mile 3 at 27 minutes, which we did. After doing my last two runs on a treadmill, it felt wonderful to run outside in fresh air. It felt great to push myself forward, rather than stay in the same place. It was in the upper 40s, which felt great compared to the gym’s 70 degrees. It just felt great to be running outside with my dad and fellow runners.

By mile 6, we were more than on track to finish in under two hours, but my dad was concerned that I was extending myself too much and I would poop out. We were right behind two ladies who were running around a 9:20 minute pace, and he told me that we should stay behind them for a couple miles to lower our heart rates. These nice women became our unofficial pace bunnies. It felt easy and effortless to run at this pace, and my heart rate came way down. But I felt like we were running so slowly. I motioned to my dad that we should pass them several times, but he wouldn’t let me. Around mile 8 though, I had enough of this slow pace – I wanted to finish under two hours, dang it! We passed them and continued on.

By mile 10 I was feeling awesome. We were on pace to finish in under two hours, and my body felt great. I had just finished listening to Bon Jovi’s It’s My Life, and I felt really inspired. Normally I just skip this song, but for whatever reason it really motivated me at this part of my run. Specifically the chorus line,”It’s my life/  It’s now or never / I ain’t gonna live forever,” made me want to run faster. I listened to the song twice. My legs felt strong and my breathing was good. We stopped for water and split a GU, and I told my dad we should pick up the pace. He wanted to keep it at the slower pace and then ramp up at mile 12. I was not a fan of this plan – I wanted to run faster!! According to Bon Jovi, it’s now or never!

And so I ran a little faster. My dad and I drifted a part from about mile 11 – 12.5, and I maintained a short distance in front of him. I kept looking back, and he was there. Good. Apparently we ran mile 11-12 at about an 8:30 minute pace, which explains why I totally crashed at mile 12. I no longer felt awesome at mile 12; my legs felt fine, but I was  nauseous and out of breath. I wanted to stop and curl up on the side of the street, but I was so close to finishing this race in under 2 hours. So I pushed through. This is when running shifts from requiring physical strength to requiring mental strength. I physically felt fine (for the most part), but I was worn out. I had to tell myself, Less than 10 minutes to go,  Megan. You can do ANYTHING for ten minutes. I told myself this over and over again as I kept moving forward. With less than half a mile to go, my dad caught up to me. We saw mile 13 and the school ahead, which was a glorious sight. I was tired and sick of running. We both picked up the pace and “sprinted” to the finish line. The clock time was 1:59:30, but our “chip time: was 1:59:10.

Yay! We made it!

Close Up of Finisher Shirt

To celebrate, we went to the Bagelry and I enjoyed a delicious whole wheat bagel with turkey, what I called my victory bagel. It was an awesome run that has boosted my confidence and motivation. Even though I’m following the training plan and working out/ running 5-6 times a week,  I often doubt myself. This run shows that my training and hard work is paying off; I am becoming stronger and faster. With less than two months until the marathon, I feel strong and capable – I am going to do this after all!

Yum! Enjoying My Victory Bagel

Total: 24.1 miles
Cross Training: 1 hour


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5 thoughts on “Week 9 of Training (Feb 28 – March 6)

  1. We did good, little girl! Actually, you ran like one of the “Big Girls.” You are metamorphosing from a “Non-runner” into a “real runner.” However you define it, we were really running, you and I. And it felt good. And it makes me smile to remember it. Thanks.

      • I left 2 comments for Week 8: I love to run because … and You know you are a long-distance runner when …
        The blog is growing just as we are growing. Good job!

  2. Megan, you are such a cool chick. I’m so amazed by your discipline and drive to do this. It’s fun to see your self confidence grow and I suspect it will continue to do so, that’s great!

    Keep up the good work my dear:)

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