Weeks 8 and 9 of 2018 NYC Marathon Training

Week 8

9/3: Last day in New England. 6.2 miles around Conway, NH. Then we drove to Maine and ate more lobster.

Covered Bridge in Conway, NH

The Clam Shack in Kennebunkport, ME

Bob’s Clam Hut in Kittery, ME

9/4: 6am flight back to NYC and went straight into work. Much needed rest day.

9/5: 3 miles at night in Morningside Park in the final throes of the city’s gross heat and humidity. Korean fried chicken and ddukbokki (and beer) for dinner.

Morningside Park Waterfall

Korean Fried Chicken, kimchi coleslaw, and calamari ddukbokki

9/6: Unintentional rest day. Finally back in the throes of meal prepping and healthier post-vacation eating.

Grain Bowl at Le Pain Quotidien

9/7: Hit snooze on my AM run, then was supposed to be going to Fast Braid Friday with Colleen Quigley at the NYRR RunCenter. But they changed the location last-minute and I didn’t get the memo. I showed up at the RunCenter and was wondering where everyone was. By the time I figured it out, it would have been tight for time and going back to the UES (which is where I had just come from and didn’t want to backtrack). I decided to go home and cook dinner and not run (the event was going to have a 1.7 mile shakeout run but I couldn’t fit all my running stuff in my work bag).

9/8: Remember last week how I slipped in that I signed up for a 5K? Yeah, that would be the TEAL 5K in Prospect Park. I’m over a year out from my 5K PR (though to be fair have only raced one since) and was hoping that I could use my higher recent volume and last week + of lower mileage as a taper. The course was my usual route in the park but the first mile was downhill, second mile was flat, and third mile had the big hill. I was able to get close to 5K PR pace on the first mile, then slowed to 10K pace on the second, then the wheels fell off on the third. I wasn’t even at half marathon pace, but closer to goal marathon pace. But my friend Chun who was doing his long run got me to push through the last quarter mile and I hit a 7:13 pace for the final 0.1 of it. I guess this is why I actually did speedwork and 5K-specific workouts last year before my PR. I grabbed the swag bag and banana then did a cooldown jog home with a teammate. Total of 6.1 miles for the day.

Saw The Nun with friends then tried out the Detroit style pizza at Lions Tigers and Squares before getting a Butterfinger blizzard at Dairy Queen.

Pepperoni and Vodka Pies at Lions, Tigers, and Squares

9/9: Since I skipped out on my long run last week, I wanted to get back up to normal (14-16 mile range) this week even though it was supposed to be a cutback long run and week overall (11 miles and 28 miles). I woke up ‘late’ at 7 to go cheer for the 5th Avenue Mile after deciding not to run up there. I cheered for a few hours then headed home and napped before my long run. Then I just didn’t do it? The rain continued and I just could not bring myself to run. I thought about pushing it to Monday night, which I did last year with some success.

5th Avenue Mile Cheering

Cherring for the NYRR Cameras

Total: 15.3 miles and no long run. Eep.

Week 9

9/10: Weather was still leaning toward the very rainy, so I did 3 treadmill miles at easy pace after deciding not to make up my long run.

9/11: I laced up my new Saucony Freedoms and ran to and from NYRR Open Run in Brooklyn Bridge Park. I did that as sort of a fartlek, alternating in the 8’s and 9’s. The gnats were out of control and I had to pull one out of my mouth, then found one in my bra later. Cool. 7.4 miles total.

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9/12: Easy loop with the Brooklyn Beer Runners for 4.6 miles. Ended with a beer then got tamales at Maya Taqueria.

9/13: Track Mile! I ran from work to Icahn Stadium where they open the track to the public every Thursday night. Coach Honerkamp puts on a timed mile series once a month that I’ve seen some friends do, and I thought I should use it as a fitness test after my abysmal 5K. I ran 2 miles to get there, did a warm-up mile with a friend, then race the mile in 7:24, 5 seconds off from my PR. I definitely think it’s time to bring back more aggressive speedwork intervals in and will be trying to throw down next month. Short cooldown jog off-watch so 4 miles total officially.

9/14: Rest day.

9/15: Long run. NYRR Virtual Trainer prescribed 17 miles. Last year, I did it as the Bronx 10 Miler then a miserable, sunny, hot 7 miles after that I cut a little short. This year, I planned it with another PPTC member who wanted similar pace and distance, so we set out together at 7am. We definitely took several water breaks as the sun peaked out of the clouds and it warmed up a bit and we paused to fuel. I had only hit 15.5 as I neared my Juice Press destination, so I finished it with a slog up the stairs in Fort Greene Park, where I ran into a friend. I practically rolled down the hill for my final bit after pausing to chat. Happy to hit 16.2 miles total.

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9/16: I stopped off at Chip in Gansevoort Market to try out their strawberry shortcake cookies. Holy moly. Much later, I did a Recovery run with Chaya around Prospect Park in the PM (moved from a planned early run in Morningside Park). Warm but breezy! 6.1 miles total and it felt great.

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Total: 41.5 miles, a new weekly high. Feeling good and back on track.

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Week 4 of 2018 NYC Marathon Training

This was supposed to be a down week with 2 full days off and only 27 miles. But I was feeling weird about my last week where I missed the goal by 7+ miles. The weather was topsy turvy (heat wave, thunderstorms and lightning, etc).

8/6: I took the Mile High Run Club The Distance class and was able to get in 5.5 miles of intervals in 57 minutes. I pushed my paces just a bit and am starting to feel ready for some speed again. I’m shooting for a 5K PR in September (race TBD) so any time spent running in the 7:xx range is good.

8/7: I was planning to do a full but slow ~6.5-7 miles (with a run to the NYRR Open Run Brooklyn Bridge Park course and back). But Open run got canceled due to lightning about halfway through! I was able to run and just make a bus and avoid the rain on the way home and ended up with 4 miles for the day.

8/8: I was able to volunteer at the Al Goldstein Summer Speed Series #6 due to work conflicts easing up, so I ran there. Then ran to a water station to help out. Then ran back to race HQ then out of the park with a teammate and to the bar to meet the Brooklyn Beer Runners group. 5.2 miles total at a very easy pace. So hot, so humid. It rained a little bit which felt great.

8/9: Off day

8/10: Unplanned rest day. Got home from work and didn’t feel like doing the 9 miles for the Fireworks Group Run. Thought about running to spectate Take the Bridge in Williamsburg, but enjoyed my quiet night in, elevating my feet.

8/11: I had again planned to do my long run as part of Summer Streets, but woke up to some pains in the middle of the night and wasn’t feeling 100% when I got up at 7. I watched the thunderstorms and rain blow in and eventually made it down to the treadmill for an easy 3 miles. I also did a strength workout (bent-over rows, shoulder press, kettlebell deadlifts). Then it was time for more food adventures with Lori. We hit up The Nugget Spot for their special fried chicken sandwich with hot honey ice cream and Flip Sigi for the special burrito (but also longanisa poutine and short rib wonton nachos).

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8/12: 12 miles around Central Park. I ran with friends and was glad to run a 12:xx minute mile instead of pushing to my current 10:40 pace. The humidity was brutal but it was good to get time on my feet and with good company.

Total: 29.7 miles out of a prescribed 27. This makes me feel more prepared for the ~34 on tap next week and for all of my future long runs (some cutback weeks go down to 11 miles).

Week 3 of 2018 NYC Marathon Training

7/30: 5 mile regular loop around Prospect Park. I went clockwise (most people and bike traffic goes counter-clockwise) so I got to see a lot of PPTC folks.

7/31: I ” needed” a Fartlek this week as per the NYRR Virtual Trainer, but ended up with more of a straight progression run. I went down to Brooklyn Bridge Park and made it to 7pm Open Run just in the nick of time. I sped up from 10:30 down to the low 9’s. I was planning to call it a day at 5 miles, but I had just missed both buses back home, so I ran home 1.5 miles for 6.5 total.

8/1: Cross-training day. I went back to Swerve with Gabby since she had a class pack and I had enough credits on ClassPass. My legs were feeling heavy, but I still pushed hard on the hills and with some of the races. My performance stats said I biked 13.8 miles which seems low, but the 20+ mile stats I get from Flywheel always seemed high.

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8/2: Real Rest Day. Went to Mermaid Inn with a friend visiting from out of town and ordered everything on their happy hour food menu except the raw stuff (she’s expecting).

8/3: Coney Island Fireworks Group Run, which I turned into my long run due to forecasted rain Saturday morning. I got 3.2 in solo, then 6 with the group down to the Coney Island boardwalk, then another 0.8 in along the boardwalk’s piers to make it an even 10. I met some new running people in my cluster of 7, then saw some old PPTC folks at the end. I enjoyed a watermelon and blue raspberry Slush Puppy and some fireworks before taking the subway home with a sweaty group of runners.

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8/4: I was feeling beat up from the long run and didn’t particularly want to run in the morning downpour (but had a haircut appointment at 11:45am), so I did an easy recovery 3 miles on the gym treadmill. Apparently I missed a total deluge and multiple phones were drowned. Still bummed that I missed the first week of SummerStreets, though.

Then I did an Escape Room with friends (we got out!) and ate at Spicy Village before getting Taiyaki. I got green tea and back sesame swirl as usual.

8/5: I had planned to do a recovery run in Central Park since I woke up uptown, but had a lazy morning instead. Went to my uptown favorite Bo’s Bagels with the bf, then met my Instagram food friend in Williamsburg for a cold brew slushie at Toby’s (they call it a crushie), and a sushi omakase at the brand spankin’ new spot Ume. It was deconstructed and both beautiful as well as a lot of fun to play with (the different salts and seasonings are on the bottom left).

I made it to Restorative Yoga class at 6pm and decided against running after because of my extreme hip tightness. Area Yoga was only 4 credits on ClassPass, which makes me glad I keep doing the ~3 classes a month option.

Total:: 24.7 miles out of a prescribed 32. Sigh. I knew my first two spot-on weeks might be an issue and lead to some leg tiredness. Hopefully I can keep up with the rest of the plan’s mileage from here. I’m aware that I missed at least one weekday run each week the last two fall marathon training cycles, but I’m also trying to make up for my injured spring with a solid fall here. Hoping to find a balance!

Week 1 of Richmond Marathon Training 7/24-7/30

Yeah, y’all read that right. I’m now 80% sure that I’m going to try to run a marathon this fall. This % has ranged from 10% back in January all the way up to where it is now. It’s been a wild ride mentally. I was still 50-50 on the issue back in early July but then I repurchased the NYRR Virtual Trainer on a whim on the 12th after playing around with the inputs on the 11th. I was on a Conservative plan last year for the New York City Marathon but wanted something with higher mileage this time around since I’m not coming off of injury and had a pretty solid spring racing season with a decent base of summer miles (and hit some time goals). I’m now on the Moderate 16-week plan which will have me running more consistently into the 30’s and up to the low 40 mpw. This would be a 10-20% increase from last year’s training for the NYC Marathon.

The Virtual Trainer begins its weeks on Sundays but I’ve been mentally starting mine on Mondays, so I’m going to keep up that convention here on the blog. That should also help couch weeks like this past one where I did my previous week’s long run on Saturday but the current week’s had been on a Sunday.

On with the mileage!

7/24: Tennis clinic then on to a Filipino kamayan feast seen below from Ugly Kitchen for J’s birthday. Then we went to Snowdays and I split the Made in Taiwan for dessert. They were out of grass jelly so I got Captain Crunch cereal on it instead (along with mochi and a condensed milk drizzle all on a base of green tea snow cream). It was perfect! No pictures because I ate it all too fast.


7/25: 2 mile to Open Run, then 3.1 at increasing tempo pace. I got to run with NYRR President Peter Ciaccia for a good chunk of it and we talked about some NYRR races. I was a little starstruck but he was very friendly and chill.

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This is what happens when I wear the Ghosts and try for speed

 

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7/26: 4 easy miles in Prospect Park later at night after trying out sushiritos and sushi nachos from Sushirito on 23rd Street with E early on (pictured below). Sylvan Esso was playing at the Bandshell and there was also a showing of The Sandlot so it was cool to have some ambiant noise and more people around.

7/27: NYRR R-U-N 5K in Central Park and a 2 mile warmup. The humidity crept back up after a lovely Tuesday and Wednesday, so I was alsresdt getting very warm and sweaty during my warm-up. I tried to take the first mile easy but not too easy which ended up being an 8:05 pace. This is faster than my PR pace, so whoops. The second mile felt rough and I had to slow down. I regret not getting water after the first mile marker but managed to grab some after the second. By that point, Cat Hill had already happened and my breathing wasn’t great. My final half mile was at a great pace but the rest was a struggle.

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They gave out popsicles after and I was all about that. My final time was 25:35, which is a 2-second PR. I’ll take it, considering the weather and that my 25:37 previous PR from June 7th was in conditions 20 degrees cooler and less humid. I’m probably not done with this distance yet for this year.

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7/28: Rest day but I managed to have Chipotle for lunch and Shake Shack for dinner with a lot of rosé in between.

7/29: 4.7 miles around noon due to feeling the effects of the previous night’s drinks and 11pm Shackburger and Concrete. I was so glad that I went out at all and felt much better afterward, thanks in part to some extra blue Gatorade laying around the fridge. Then I hightailed it to Long Island City to meet up with out-of-town friends to try some beer at local breweries.

7/30: 8.3 miles over the Brooklyn Bridge and Manhattan Bridge with Chaya. I didn’t get a smoothie after so I’m already off from my goal of doing that after each marathon training long run. My plan called for 8 but we just hit so many lights that I was growing annoyed trying to add another 0.2 to make it more even.

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Total mileage: 27.4 miles and some tennis (plan called for 26 miles).

The Week in Workouts and Food 6/26 – 7/2

I guess I haven’t yet mentioned my lower sugar plan, which I enacted after the Miami trip. I caught myself eating A LOT of candy (brought a bag of Haribo gummi bears on that trip which is my travel standard, so maybe it was the weird sour candy that messed me up) and baked goods (and ice cream) and was definitely feeling its effects on my body. So I decided that for 4 weeks, I would forego said treats, strive to eat more fruits and vegetables, and start actively lowering the amount of ‘normal’ foods with high levels of sugar (ahem, yogurt and granola breakfasts). I’m trying to recalibrate my taste buds to stop craving so much sugar all the time. I’m allowing myself one traditional dessert per week, usually on Saturdays, which has made dessert more special. Of course, it helps that two of the options were a homemade strawberry mile high ice cream pie and some wedding cake this past weekend.

Monday 6/26: I normally don’t run on Mondays but I figured I could use some easy miles after the Achilles 4 Miler on Sunday. I ran 2.2 miles to watch my friend’s softball game, then 2.2 miles home.

Tuesday 6/27: 1.5 miles to NYRR Open Run, 3.1 at an easyish pace, then an extra 0.4 around to hit 5 miles even. Shake Shack for dinner, where I got the fried chicken sandwich and we split bacon cheese fries. I hope the Red Velvet Cake Shake is still there in a few weeks because it is delicious.

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These are actually only my 2nd shortest pair of shorts

Wednesday 6/28: 5.5 treadmill interval miles at The Distance at Mile High Run Club. I chose to downgrade the 10% hills since those sometimes leave me with stressed hamstrings and glutes.

Thursday 6/29: I had a nice leisurely stroll to the picnic edition of Book Club with a view in Brooklyn Bridge Park.

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Friday 6/30: Rest day

Saturday 7/1: 5.5 miles longish run. My long runs won’t technically have to be in the double digits until September, but I’m hoping to keep them in the 6-8 mile range until then to keep my aerobic base up.

Then I went to Philly for a wedding. No cheesesteaks or roast pork sandwiches this time, but the parting snack was cheesesteak egg rolls and they were delicious.

Wedding take-homes. Not pictured: soft pretzel and cheesesteak egg rolls


Sunday 7/2: Unplanned rest day. After getting home from Philly, I ended up not leaving my apartment.

Total: 20.4 miles. Closer to being back on track, but I wouldn’t have minded getting to 25. Next week!