Summer Training

Earlier this year I began a new training program and after a period of rest and reboot, this is the first month I’ve felt as though I can really see the progress. Workouts are getting a little more intense, which makes writing about running a little more interesting.  Basically I didn’t feel as though I had much to blog about before so I didn’t. Like most marathoners, the recovery period and times of cautious rest are the worst. I get anxious and bored. Now I feel a bit like a horse ready to run and I wake up excited about the workouts for the day and the anticipation of a hard workout fill me with butterfly nerves. Love that.

Mileage is no longer a concern of mine. I don’t ask what my mileage is for the week and I have yet to add it up, which is easy because I don’t log workouts like I used too. Every once in awhile Coach Frostick will bring up the number in conversation and I will let it go. (For readers who care, he mentioned I was mid-40’s recently.) For anyone who knows me well, this is surprising. If I had to guess, I would say I was around 70 miles per week this time last year.  I LOVED my mileage. I was a complete mileage whore but I also knew the time it took to run all the miles was not sustainable for my lifestyle. It was putting too much stress on me to try to fit it in here or there. Maybe some people could balance it better than I can but my body was also warning me that it was too much.

I thought I would miss that mileage but the thing is, I’m working just as hard and the times on the Garmin watch have been showing that. I did a tempo run faster that I have ever done before (5:56 pace) solo in 90 degree weather. I was completely elated! Everything is a little too new to translate to PRs right now but I’m hoping after the racing season begins for me (starts next weekend) and I get into the swing of things, the new training will shine through. I’m always a bit rusty for the first few races back but its still the same fun. I’ll be racing a 5K on the 4th of July at Mt. Trashmore. Is Mt. Trashmore the worst name ever for a gorgeous park, running paved area, and playground? I think yes

Speaking of Mt. Trashmore, I attended my first November Project meetup there this past week. The group was wonderfully welcoming and meets weekly (and in multiple cities) so I encourage everyone to attend. This past Wednesday they held a Sunrise 6K race. My friend Megan wanted to kill me because I told her we should just run it easy and then after we passed the starting like I looked at her and said “Well, maybe we should run fast?!?!”  I ended up running it in 6:39 pace for a great 6 am workout. The group felt so sorry for me that I didn’t bring a t-shirt, that they gave me one. 🙂 I also got to break caution tape, which I have to admit, I really loved!!

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Megan and I post race. I told you Mt. Trashmore is gorgeous. It’s where everyone in Virginia Beach goes to do their hill training, it is literally a pile of trash covered with dirt & grass.

Saturday was my day off. This is also new. Days off? What is that?!? I have one day off a week right now (this could/will change). I am hoping this is another building block in the new injury-free me.  So instead of running I went to boot camp at lululemon hosted by The Fit Petite. It was an excuse for me to say “My butt hurts” for the 24 hours following class. Normally I prefer to do the agony of strength work alone, at home, where no one can see my face but this class was really fun & energetic. Plus it helped to be distracted by possible shopping ideas since we worked out in the store.

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Since school is out for summer and I no longer have free time mid-week, Sundays have been my long run days. Long runs are still in the 10-14 mile range for me since marathon training won’t begin for a while. Some of these long runs (maybe most) are fast finish runs. This was is hugely intimidating for me and I’d have to really mentally prepare myself. Initially I would start the runs with friends and finish alone but now I complete the entire thing alone just so that mentally I can get myself into the right frame of mind. Sometimes I work better with training partners and sometimes I have to get into that grind alone to make the most of a workout. Last week I did 12 miles with the last 6 under 6:25. Huge for me at this point. This week was 10 miles at an easier pace.  It’s my hardest day of the week but I always feel amazing when it’s over.

Alright everyone, I can hear my kids rumbling awake. Summer is my favorite season but my free-time is much shorter. I have more about training to write about, including my nutrition, and hope to do a better job of keeping up the blog now that I have steady training to talk about. Happy running everyone and  enjoy your 4th of July weekend!

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19 thoughts on “Summer Training

  1. I’m so happy for you Kris. It sounds like you are both mentally and physically in a better place. I think the change is going to propel you into your trials cut and I’m honestly so excited to see where This summer and fall take you.

    Talking about mount Trashmore to out of towners is my favorite.

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  2. i just recently found your blog after a search for serious running bloggers (a la Ms. Fit Runner), and it seems we are neighbors! You’re a huge inspiration! Have fun at Trashmore!

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  3. I love this update!! You are such an inspiration to me and someday I hope to be as fast as YOU!! I put special emphasis on faster finish long runs as well. They are tough but I definitely think they pay off for me during race days!
    I’m also racing a 4th of July race (on July 3rd though) and I’m nervous/excited for it. I had never races a 5k until last year- and I set my 5k PR at this race, and it was my very first 5k. And I haven’t been able to break that PR since that day…It is a never ending annoyance to me that I haven’t been able to break it!

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  4. This is so awesome! I’m really excited to follow along and see what incredible times you are going to accomplish! Resting is the hardest, but waking up and being excited to run because we want to, not have to, is one of the best feelings in the world!

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  5. Sounds like you’re doing great with your summer training and having fun! Time between marathon segments can be tough, but you seem to be doing it exactly right! Good luck with the 5K!

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  6. This is really exciting! I’m so glad your training is going well and injury free!!
    Good luck with the 5K this weekend and looking forward to following along in your training.

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  7. I’m excited that things are going well for you and that you’re running injury-free. I too dropped my average mileage recently after putting too much stress on my body and I’ve noticed a huge difference in my recovery and the PRs I’ve been hitting. As an avid November Project-goer, I’m glad you gave it a shot!!

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  8. So glad things are going well and that you’re injury free :). Maybe the lower mileage might be a good thing, if you don’t get the results you want in races, you can always build back up. Sometimes it doesn’t hurt to experiment and try something new, especially if you don’t have any goal races on the horizon. It sounds like your coach knows what he’s doing too. We have a store here called Athleta that has classes inside the store and I’ve thought about trying those out, along with some of the free boot camp style classes in town.

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  9. I’m not at your level with running, but can relate to the “mileage wh***” bit. I used to be obsessed with a certain number per week, even though I was constantly cranky and burnt out. My times weren’t improving and I didn’t like running anymore. These days, I run less but the runs feel like they’re better quality – usually the workouts have a purpose – and it has made ALL the difference. Congrats on the 6k run and the tshirt. 😉 Glad you are in a good place.

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  10. Great to see you running so well! I remember when we lived in the area (my dad was coast guard) there was such a debate about Mt. Trashmore – apparently people were concerned about toxic waste leakage. My mom’s a big hippie, so she was panic-stricken! She would never let us go anywhere near the place, so it’s nice to see that it’s actually quite a lovely place.

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    • Oh jeez, that would scare me too!! If I heard anything like that I wouldn’t let me kids go either. That must have been fun having a coast guard dad. I bet you lived in some pretty cool places!

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