February 12, 2018
I'm eight weeks into my 18-week training program and I can finally enjoy the comfort of beer again to help get me through the final 10 weeks. It's been a nice reunion and having a cold beer waiting for me after my tougher runs has been an excellent motivator. I'm definitely looking forward to a few of the specialty brews I've got waiting for me in the coming weeks!
Monday, February 5 - Rest
Nothing special about Monday, just another rest day post-Super Bowl celebration. I've let my strength training slide off a bit in February so hopefully, I can get back to it this week.
Tuesday, February 6 - Planned 4 Mile Run
Ran 4.01 miles in 34:36 at an 8:38 pace
Continuing to break in my new Fresh Foam shoes from New Balance. I think my Newtons are starting to wear down which may be why my feet have been so sore but I haven't decided what I'm going to replace them with yet.
Wednesday, February 7 - Planned 7 Mile Run
Ran 7.08 miles in 1:02:30 at an 8:50 pace.
It was pouring rain on Wednesday, it was cold, and it was windy, but I refuse to run on the treadmill. I was soaked by the end of the run and weighted down by all the water but I kept on going. Overall the run was rough but I know that every terrible run helps me appreciate the rest of my runs so much more.
Thursday, February 8 - Planned 4 Miles
Ran 4.01 miles in 32:56 at an 8:13 pace.
I didn't dress for the cold weather and struggled for the first mile or so but I heated up pretty quick. I think rebounding from my rainy Wednesday run helped make this run so strong and I ran negative splits with my final mile clocking in at 7:53.
Friday, February 9 - Rest
Friday was a great rest day because I found a few cans of Sip of Sunshine to enjoy during the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics. After Dry January though, I did a pretty good job of pacing myself to make sure I wasn't feeling too rough in the morning.
Saturday, February 10 - Planned 15 Miles
Ran 15 miles in 2:14:03 at an 8:56 pace.
Another week closer to the marathon meant that once again I was running my longest run so far. I was up and down as far as paces are concerned throughout the run, but once I hit the halfway point, my legs were feeling a bit stronger. I was definitely noticing some fatigue by the end of the run but I also think I was pushing the pace a little more than I'd like.
It felt great to get through a 15-mile run but I'm certainly still a bit nervous about the looming 20-miler on the horizon. With every long run, I'm getting a little more confident about the idea of running a marathon but I'm also having to make conscious decisions about my pace to make sure I don't blow up before the finish.
Sunday, February 11 - 60 Minute Cross Train
I ended up making a last minute trip to Gettysburg to visit my mom and step-dad for the weekend so no cross training this week. I wonder if I'll ever manage to get on a bike before the end of training. For now, I'll just continue to aim for next week!
I did the math this week and over the next 8 weeks, I'm going to run 7 half-marathons. Not officially, and many of those runs will far surpass the 13.1-mile mark, but 7 of my next 8 long runs will be at least a half-marathon or more. If you had asked me this time last year, I don't think I ever would have imagined I'd be here.
My legs are definitely getting stronger, sure, but maybe even more importantly, my mind is getting more comfortable on the longer runs. Running for hours at a time on a Saturday afternoon gives you a lot of time to think and a lot of time to doubt yourself, but each week I'm becoming more confident in my ability to actually run this race.
The next few weeks are going to be a tough test because I'll be traveling which I haven't had to deal with too much so far. In the past I know I've let runs slide in favor of vacation activities so it's going to take some commitment on my part to make sure I'm logging the miles, but I think I'll be able to manage with some creative scheduling. I leave for Chicago next Saturday so this weekend will be the first test!