I accomplished and grew a lot as a (marathon) runner this training cycle, I think. I ran more than I ever had reaching a peak of 140km in one week and having 5 solid weeks at 130+km and 13 weeks over 100k. Including 9 long runs over 30k, with the longest being 37.2k. As with any season it had it’s ups and downs. And unfortunately I was not completely satisfied with any of my races. But my workouts came a long way landing a number of workout PBs…. but who cares about workout PBs. I think sometimes it is important to remember that it may take the legs and/or the brain some time to become accustomed to the new found speed and mileage. So I will not get discouraged that I did not hit any of my A goals for the year, and be satisfied with the personal best times I did land.
But even though my time goals were not achieved training goals were and it was my first time doing a marathon 2 cycles in a row. I also increased my mileage higher than I have in the past without sacrificing any quality work. And with all of that considered I managed to remain injury free and did not miss one training run.
I also focused on a couple of different things this cycle. That being nutrition and strength work. I worked with our naturopath Dr Ashley James at The Runners Academy, and while I think there are still some kinks to work out I was grateful for her recommendations. On the strength side I made myself do minimum 1 but most weeks 2 strength sessions. These are not my favourite training sessions in the week but I do believe they are of the utmost importance!
I ran four races this season the first being the women’s 5k at the end of August. If you have not ran a women’s run series in Toronto I highly recommend you check them out (http://www.towomensruns.com/)!! At this race I ran what I expected to run despite going out too hard on Erin McClures tail (that woman has wheels!).
Next up was Scotia half marathon despite running a 38s PB I was quite disappointed with this race as I had high hopes of running a 1:17 and came up short. But with no taper and marathon training legs I had to accept that was all I had that day.
Since I had been disappointed with Scotia I decided I wanted to run another race to have a positive experience going in to Philly. So I found a super random 5k and only told Nicole (coach) and my fiancé I was doing it. We decided to make it into a work so I did a 4k warm up / 5k tempo at marathon pace / 5k race at 18:00 / 6k cool down. This made me feel quite confident as it was a chilly morning and a hilly course. Coming in as a the second person with a course record helped too (it was the first time the race had been run haha).
Lastly of course was the Philadelphia marathon, my goal race. See review here: https://torunningchiro.com/2015/11/23/goal-race-in-review-philly-marathon-nov-22-2015/
In all of that being said I did PB again in both the half and marathon… But I am a runner and therefore I am greedy and expect more out of myself. I do think I am capable of my goals and (after a break) will continue to build to be stronger and chase them!!!
In 3 marathons I have improved my time by 9mins and 36s, which is exciting!!
PBs from the fall season:
Half marathon: 1:19:10
Now it is time for a much needed mental and physical break. I have probably been looking too forward to this break. But I think that is the biggest indication that I need it. So I will take a minimum of 1 week but up to 2 weeks of no running. Then a couple weeks of easy running and planning for the upcoming spring season. Stay tuned!!!
I hope everyone else had some success this past race season and if you,like me are left wanting more be sure to reflect on the past season and make new training goals in order to try to attain the numbers you were hoping to hit… And don’t forget to have FUN after all that is why we RUN!! Be sure to read my next blog on things to work on in the down time post goal race!
My personal a areas to work on/goals for the next cycle
-periodized strength program
-periodized nutrition program
-increase peak mileage to 150k with many weeks at 140k (as long as I do not get diminishing returns)
-run recovery/easy runs at a faster pace (if tolerated)