Ventura Marathon Training Week 2: Oh Yeah, We Training

Weekly Summary: 6/29/15-7/5/15

Well, I’ve been shocked into training. The past three marathons I’ve trained for have been coming off of injury and thus a slooowwww build. Not this time. Four weeks ago I was coming off a two week running break post-Mountains2Beach Marathon, which running break felt like forever, and this past week I blinked and found myself right smack in the middle of marathon training, running 40 miles for the week, including a 20-mile long run. The training cycle for Ventura will be much shorter since I already have a decent base and am not coming off injury, so in two weeks I’ll already be entering sharpening phase. I’ll blink again, and it’ll be taper. Oh please be taper soon! Just kidding. I’ll go stir crazy during taper. Hashtag chronic malcontent.

The week prior I had developed a slight calf strain from the failed forefoot strike experiment, and so I approached this week very gingerly (does this word even work here?). For now while I’m in basebuilding phase, my mid-week runs are run at whatever pace my body feels like. I guess if I could bother with using a heart rate monitor, it’d be at that really easy zone – I just go by feel and never push myself. This usually means I run my miles in the 11:20-11:50 pace and maybe once in a while if I’m really tired I’ll do a few at 12:00 minute mile pace. I was a little bummed to see that all three runs this week were consistently at high eleven minute mile pace and two were at 12:00-plus minute mile pace. However, I knew my mileage was increasing and, with the slight calf strain, I didn’t bug out too much about it.

Luckily the calf strain worked itself out, and I felt fine by Friday. My seven MP miles during my long run went well: 9:49, 9:25, 9:34, 9:24, 9:39, 9:31, 9:37. But then the last ten miles of my 20-miler were at those same high eleven minute mile paces, and seven were at 12:00+ minute mile pace. I finished off the sluggish week by shuffling four miles at a 12:18 pace. What the what?!?

So I have a few theories. I’m willing to chalk up the early week runs to the wonky calf. The sluggishness could also be a more holistic issue as I am generally not feeling my best due to a bad allergy season which has me not sleeping well and taking Sudafed daily for the past few weeks. It’s also worth noting that I’ve eaten less carbs the night before my last two long runs and have had these drop-offs in pace the last two weeks, so I will have to pay attention to my pre-long run nutrition. My legs had that “I need fuel” feeling early in my long run, and while I instantly felt better once I had some gels, I still felt hungry a few times during my long run, which is unusual. And let’s not forget those two dreaded words: summer running. Lastly…well, it could just be that it was a high mileage week and nothing to stress over.

The pool looked inviting. Hot and muggy in the Valley this week.
The pool looked inviting. Hot and muggy in the Valley this week.

On a good note, I made it to Pilates class! And did more cross-training in general! And didn’t go out last night at 9:45 PM to buy cake! Seriously, my diet wasn’t too good post long run as we went to a fancy BBQ. The host rented out Lobsta Truck and had Sprinkles cupcakes and more et cetera et cetera. I had two lobster rolls among many other delights. But I didn’t get cake last night! Yay me!

Fancy 4th of July party with my fancy guy.
Fancy 4th of July party with my fancy guy.
The star of the party was the Lobsta Truck.
The star of the party was the Lobsta Truck.
Lobster mac 'n cheese. Idea is better than execution.
Lobster mac ‘n cheese. Idea is better than execution.

This upcoming week is a 47-mile week, so talk about no rest for the wicked. Let’s hope I sleep well, eat well, and run well. How many weeks until taper?!?

Hope you all have a great running week!

Total weekly mileage: 40
Long run: 20 miles (7 MP)
Cross-training: Pilates, leg strengthening exercises (18 exercises x 15 reps x 3 sets), three sets of core work, and lots of stretching and rolling.

4 thoughts on “Ventura Marathon Training Week 2: Oh Yeah, We Training

  1. I had really good (and long lasting) luck with acupuncture for allergies–like they went away in 1988 and haven’t come back. I was taking daily Sudafed also, to get through hay fever season in MA. A few treatments and they were gone gone. Now I’m using acupuncture to re-energize during the high mileage parts of marathon training–it really seems to help with the fatigue and sluggishness.
    Looking forward to hearing how the 2nd race goes for you! (I’m thinking of marathon 2 15 weeks after marathon 1, with similar rest/training re-entry as you)

    1. Thank you so much for this info! I am at my wit’s end and even started the netti pot yesterday. I have a regular acupuncture guy so I will start this next week. Good luck with the rest of your training!

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