Tuesday: Treadmill tempo day! I ran a 10 minute warm up, ran 20 minutes at my 5:19/km tempo pace and the rounded out the four miles by cooling down. This pace felt comfortably hard for the tempo part which is the point. 6.44k, 36:58
Wednesday: HILLS! I missed the first week of hill training while I was away, so this was my first chance to reacquaint myself with the old Thomas Street Hill in Streetsville. As usual, I didn’t love the up and down while I was doing it, but I got through all five maintaining a strong effort (though not a tempo effort) and was happy to see the back end of the fifth repeat. 7.85k (5x500m hills), 47:54
Thursday: One of the best parts of my job is getting invited to all kinds of events. I was invited to watch the Leafs game from a party box on Thursday night so I had to return to the treadmill for my easy run. It was an easy treadmill run. Man, the treadmill makes me sweat like a pig. The Leafs lost. The food was awesome though. 8k, 50:07
Friday: Rest (thank goodness!)
Saturday: Despite getting a full 8 hours of sleep, I was super tired all day on Saturday and just not feeling 100%. I usually run 8-10k on this day, but I just was not into it. I decided to stick with the plan which called for 6k and got out into the wind to do so. I'm glad that my last 2.5k loop saw the wind at my back (a good plan by me!). 6.27k, 38:36
Sunday: LSD day. I had missed the last two LSDs due to a storm and our trip. The last long distance I had run was a 20km run that went well. I had planned to start to run with the group on Sunday's as we got past this distance, but my older son had a birthday party at 11am and I had to bring him to it. This meant that I had to tackle the 26k LSD on my own. Thank goodness that my friend Kerry was willing to run about 10k with me mid-run. I headed out at 6am and ran my usual 16k route which took me past Kerry's house. I was doing well, trying shot blocks for the first time and trying not to get too worked up about the total distance I was running. I picked Kerry up right on time and we headed out for another short loop.
By the time I hit about 19k I was starting to feel tired, but I think it had a lot to do with the thoughts that I still had 7k to go. I kept chatting with Kerry and she was great, letting me walk to take shot blocks when I needed. At one point I realized that I would have to carry on without my partner so that I could finish the run. By this time, I was over 21.2k and closing in on my longest distance ever (>22k). Kerry and I said our goodbyes and I continued on. I took a walk break at 23-24k for a full minute but it totally revived me and allowed me to finish strong. I can't describe how I was feeling. My legs were DEAD, but they just kept turning over at pace. It was like they had a mind of their own. I can see why 25-30k is a dead zone in a marathon and am looking forward to getting the longer distances behind me to break through the mental barriers.
When I hit 26k, I stopped and walked the last few metres home. I was tired, but pleased at accomplishing a run that was a full 4km longer than any that I had ever run before! I did some stretching and came in to plug my Garmin in to load the data. I was disappointed that it didn't show my KM splits via the download (as they are on the watch) as I'd like to see how those last few KMs worked out in terms of pacing for me. Just as I was starting to fiddle with the watch, my stomach turned over and I had to RUSH to the bathroom. I don't think it was the shot blocks, as I felt fine on the run. Sometimes I just have to go after a long run no matter what I've eaten or not. I made sure to down a poweraid, but skipped the planned ice-bath.
I'm very proud of this run and can't wait to tackle the 29k planned for two weeks from now. 26k, 2:48:09
Total KM: 66.81, Total time: 6:58:15, Average pace per KM: 0:06:16
So, that's week 8! Week 9 brings the Chilly Half Marathon! Goals to come!