Week 3: Wisconsin Half Marathon Training

The big news this week is that I set a personal weekly mileage record — 30 mpw. It’s the first of many mileage records to come. I felt great at the end of this week, with only a tiny bit of shin pain I foamrolled right out.

Amby Burfoot at Runner’s World says that if you’re a 2-hour half marathoner on 20 mpw (as I am: my PR is 1:57, on just over 20mpw), you’ll see the biggest gains by increasing miles. My modified 18/55 Pfitzinger plan will hopefully have me peak at 50 mpw, if I can keep my legs sound. I can’t help dreaming about where I’d be if I put in more miles when I see a chart like this one (by Jack Daniels):

via (Running Seal)

(via Running Seal)

I was a little nervous for Tuesday’s run because I knew I’d be doing 10 miles on the treadmill. I get super bored on the treadmill and am constantly negotiating with myself to cut my runs short, and then spending more time talking myself back into finishing my full run. I had the idea a few weeks ago to listen to audiobooks on the treadmill, thinking it would help with boredom, but I realized it only made things worse. It’s simply too much to keep running at a somewhat challenging pace while someone is calmly reading in my ear. The tedium of it is overwhelming and ond mentally very tiring. I am much happier when I’m blasting music, zoning out, and running like a caged animal. I’ll save the audiobooks for scenic & relaxing outside runs.

It sounds like an obvious observation but on Tuesday, and again on Wednesday, I felt newly confident that my plan was actually working. I never used to be able to run 10 miles like it was no big deal, let alone be able to chase it with 8-including-4-at-tempo-pace the next day. Not only did both of these workouts feel easy, but I felt great afterward — flush with endorphins and relaxed.

There are only three more weeks of base-building for Wisconsin and I can’t wait to start adding in more speedwork. I’m really appreciating how long an 18-week training cycle is, and what incredible potential there is for improvement over this time. My goal for Week 4 is to increase the length of my longest run to 12 miles and to practice yoga at least once.

January 14 - January 20 

  • Monday - 4
  • Tuesday - 8
  • Wednesday - 8 with 4 at tempo pace
  • Thursday - Rest
  • Friday - Rest
  • Saturday - 8
  • Sunday - Rest

Total - 30