Weeks 15 & 16: Wisconsin Half Marathon Training

Like most runners not running the Boston Marathon, I spent Marathon Monday first excitedly refreshing Twitter to read the awesome commentary about the women's race, then anxiously refreshing over and over to make sure everyone I follow was accounted for and safe.

After that, I had to get off the internet. I'm not going to write about Boston. I gave myself the offline space and forum to think and talk about a lot of the issues raised by the bombing, and I just don't want or need to bring those online.

I signed out of Twitter and Google Reader on Monday and didn't feel like looking again until today, basically.

But now I'm back on the internet, so it's time to update some old business. The past two weeks were a roller coaster for both current events and personal reasons. Meanwhile, I was carefully running on my wonky Achilles with my podiatrist-recommended Superfeet and compression socks, with mixed results. Some days my ankle creaked and swelled up; other days, I ran painfree with no swelling. I've been icing, ibuprofin-ing, and Alfredson heel-dropping all the time. My goals in these two weeks were simply to get in a few hour-plus workouts to try to reclaim some of my pre-injury endurance, and to not further aggravate my ankle. In those respects I succeeded, but it's still rough going and I'm not very excited about WIHM on May 4 anymore. It will still be a race day, which is always a great day, but I can't hide my disappointment that my training sputtered out like this. Still, I know that's just running, sometimes.

In Week 15, I did a slow 7.5 miles on Tuesday and 10 miles on Thursday. I was beat from both of those efforts, which confirmed what I already assumed -- I've lost quite a bit of my endurance. I had plans for another longish run over the weekend, but I ended up with just four "easy" miles (my supposed "easy pace" didn't feel as easy as it should). 

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My wacky heel-lift Superfeet are definitely mitigating the stress to my Achilles, but they're also heavy and causing me to run a little differently. I can feel that I'm putting new strain on the rest of my leg muscles. In particular, my knees are crying out for attention, and I can't shake the sense that I'm holding myself together with duct tape until Wisconsin.

Week 16 included 6 exhausting miles with my running group. For whatever reason, I could just not keep up with our 8:3x pace. I was barely hanging on to the back of the pack. That was really hard because 8:30ish is the pace I have in my head as my injury-adjusted goal half marathon pace. Post-injury is full of tiny disappointments like this, but the best response I've come up with is to try my hardest to be patient and wait and see how I feel come race day.

The next day I flew "home" to New York for a conference and to visit friends. On Thursday, I did 8 wonderful, effortless miles in Central Park at the same pace that killed me two days earlier. I was afraid my Midwesternized legs would turn to jello on Cat Hill, but I felt awesome and strong. It helped that it was completely gorgeous out (meanwhile, Chicago was hit with a flood, followed by snow) and that I was having exciting visualizations of the next time I will run in Central Park -- November 3, in mile 25 of the NYC Marathon.

I planned to do another 10+ miles on Sunday in Chicago, but I spent Sunday napping instead and moved my long run to Monday (yesterday).

April 8 - April 14

  • Monday- Rest
  • Tuesday- 7.5 
  • Wednesday- Rest
  • Thursday- 10
  • Friday- Rest
  • Saturday- Rest
  • Sunday- 4

Total: 21.5

April 15 - April 21

  • Monday- Rest
  • Tuesday- 5.5 
  • Wednesday- Rest
  • Thursday- 8.25
  • Friday- Rest
  • Saturday- Rest
  • Sunday- Rest

Total: 13.75 miles