We Interrupt This Training…

So The Plan was to complete two more weeks of training and then one week of taper, entering into Surf City on Super Bowl Sunday. That was The Plan anyway. Here’s what actually happened from my training notes.

Training Week 6 – Jan 13 to Jan 20, 2020
Total Miles: 27
Long Run: 13 miles

The week started out according to plan with Tuesday Track. With 2½ weeks left until Surf City, now is the sharpening stuff. Focusing more on speed and cutting mileage…and also the mental game. Sheesh, Trainer had a lot of Instructions today about how to view and run my race. I won’t go into detail, but suffice to say, I’m scared to run that way. Ha. So it’s good to practice it here on the track, and let me tell you, every nightmare came true. It was 500s, a 300, and then hill sprints. On the second 500m repeat, I started feeling it at 150m. 150m!?!? The last 100m was run on 75% arms. That was miserable but as they say: Train Hard, Race Easy.

That weekend I started getting sick, and even though I muscled through a 13-mile run, my entire body felt like trash.

Training Week 7 – Jan 20 to Jan 26, 2020
Total Miles: 15
Long Run: 8 miles

This week I focused on trying to maintain some level of fitness while being sick. My non-running days are still pretty active, so today was an hour of strength training followed by an hour of pool running to put on some non-impact miles. Some unexpected life stuff* made sticking to a training schedule a no-go last week. And now with less than two weeks until Surf City, I have a cold. Sheesh. Timing is not ideal, but oh well.

Training Week 8 – Jan 27 to Feb 2
Total Miles: 26
Long Run: 8 miles

This week was more managing of my sickness. I made a decision early in the week that I wouldn’t be able to run Surf City. In the past four years I’ve had bronchitis three times, and my experience is I just can’t push it; otherwise, I’m stuck with a cough for 4-6 weeks rather than 2. So while I could do short bursts of energy, I was pretty much getting a fast/short workout in, going to work, and then in bed as soon as I got home.

Despite not being able to go outdoors too much, Trainer and I still got in some speed training indoors, so we did drills. Drills. And more drills. Different directions, hand touch, feet touch, etc. et al. ad infinitum. Adding to that, well, my heart was heavy the — the sadness in LA is palpable. It’s like the entire city is in mourning. But one training session we had the TV on in the facility, and it was playing Kobe highlight after Kobe highlight, and we were cheering and smiling…and for brief moments, the story had a happy ending.

Finally made it outdoors at the end of the week! Double leg bounding UP A HILL. And then hill intervals. And then 250m; reset; 150m repeats. And then cone hops into a sprint. We went after it.

Training Week Feb 3 to Feb 9
Total Miles: 27
Long Run: 9 miles

Well, we pivot from wrapping up training for the Surf City Half Marathon to not running the Surf City Half Marathon to beginning training for the Mountains 2 Beach Half Marathon.

Now that I’m aiming to run longer races, my weekly mileage will stay in the 30s, which is higher than it’s been in the last couple years. I also weigh a little more than the last time I was running halfs, but I don’t want to get too much skinnier – I kind of like looking more muscular, and I’m scared the mileage will burn off my muscles. It’s such a delicate balance. Trainer and I are in synch about this, so we have been doing a lot of work with weights. Legs are loaded right now. Maybe not fast, but strong! Ha.

Training Week Feb 10 to Feb 16
Total Miles: 7.25
Long Run: 4 miles

What had happened was…sheesh. Started the week out well by getting in some speed work off the track. First two videos are a new thing Trainer started incorporating: depth jumps. They help increase explosiveness and build strength, as well as speed. The last two videos are speed and agility drills. We did so many variations of these drills. It is always hard to remember the patterns — even one small change like whether we are touching with different feet (R foot; L foot touch) or same foot, or whether we are touching the cone with hands or which direction to start – can throw you off and make you hesitate. Salute to the football players who can do all that at top speed.

On Wednesday I could tell something was off. I had cramped during a stretch, and my stomach started feeling weird. I still went for my run, but that ended badly for a couple reasons. First it quickly turned into a struggle run, and I ended up cutting it short from six miles to four. After some Web MD sleuthing, turns out I have a stomach virus. No wonder I was feeling so dehydrated, crampy, and awful. Secondly, with about 400 meters to go, my left calf started seizing up…of course I kept running on it. Probably not a good idea.

So after a day of rest, and my stomach feeling a little better, I started out on a run. My stomach was manageable, but after .6 miles my calf was feeling tighter and tighter and not loosening up. I turned around, and that was the right call. It is now officially strained. Boo.

My plan is to take 5-7 days off of running. Eat really well. And just take care of myself in all areas. I think maybe there is a message here, and I just need to push pause and reset. Luckily, I have about three months until my next race. Ugh, so frustrating, but I have been here before and this is all part of the process and being a runner. Stay tuned for how I attack my week off.

Thanks for catching up with me!


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