13 weeks to get fit and fast! [40M]

I officially have 13 weeks until my goal race! Although I'm still embarrassed by my current fitness level, I am excited to be "starting" a 13 week build up where I'm at. 13-15 weeks is a pretty standard training season for me, so usually I would be starting from scratch at this point. Instead, I've got several weeks of 30+ miles and at least three 9 mile long runs under my belt. Last week's daily runs were a bit of downer since I was running properly per my HR, but the pace was so much slower than I expected; however, the mile repeats on Friday really boosted my confidence and gave me a renewed sense of hope! :)

Sunday, December 1st 
9M long run by HR. I averaged 165 for my heart rate today which is EXACTLY what my goal was!! Very proud that I didn't panic and push my HR up after seeing each miles' splits! The pace is still way slower than I would like. :( I feel like my easy run days should be closer to sub 8:00 pace, but I guess that I'll have to let time, consistency, and patience work their magic. 8:28 pace for the average today. My left quad was extremely painful from the start and I almost stopped at 4 miles because it was so strong, but over the last half of the run it actually eased up a tad bit. Hoping ART helps it a little tomorrow! I have a long ways to go!! But I will say that running by HR has made my runs much more enjoyable! It's nice to go out and not be real winded or worn out when I finish my runs!

Monday, December 2nd
Rest day

Tuesday, December 3rd
7M w/ 6 x 1000m @ 3:56, 200j recovery. This was a rough one. I highly underestimated the weather and ended up with frozen legs, a reynauds flare-up, a tight throat and chest full of mucus, and way too little clothing, hahah. In hindsight, I should have started earlier to allow more time for warming up and drills, and I also should have dressed more appropriately. Note to self - 40* is cold when the sun is not out. Anyways, my coldness got the best of my in the first half of the workout and then I had to fight through mentally on the last half when my hands started burning and stuff. Just an all-around struggle. 3:49, 3:51, 3:50, 3:53, 3:53, 3:53 - Averages to 6:12 pace. Obviously I nailed the times, but I just was so cold that I had a bad attitude and struggled through it. My left quad is still really aching, as well. Definitely need an epsom soak today and the ART tomorrow!

Wednesday, December 4th
7M easy. My garmin says I ran 7 miles averaging 8:17 pace today, but I am well beyond positive that I ran farther than 7 miles and it was faster than 8:17 pace, hahah! It's so weird. My garmin makes the miles shorter on the track (beeping about 100m before the 1600m mark) and longer in the trails (turning a 5.2M loop into 4.7M). At any rate, today was a pretty good run despite my hip flexors. I'm glad I pushed it off and didn't run early this morning because they were much more painful then. I lucked out and ran into Katie, one of Jake's athletes, when I got to the trails at DBU. When I was entering the campus gate my HR was only at 137 so I made a big pace jump to bring it up. Since I was already moving well, that's the pace Katie latched onto so for my first 3.5 miles or so we were really moving (though the garmin would tell you we only ran 7:50 pace!). I'm glad I was able to get all 7 miles in today though. Big relief. Average HR today was 166, so still in my 70-80% range.

Thursday, December 5th
7M easy + 6 x 100m strides. Nasty weather is coming from up north so we went out super early to get our runs in on the Katy Trail. The temps started dropping during our run and by the last mile I was pretty chilled! Probably didn't help that I sweated in all my layers on the way out and then ran into the cold wind on my way back! I thought this was going to be a GREAT run at first. I was struggling to keep my HR up high enough (not that I was having to run hard, just that I kept looking down and it was too low) which was crazy because I was running way faster than I have been on these HR runs. Unfortunately when I turned around things nose-dived. I dropped the keys once in the first mile and once in the last mile and those spills took a tiny hit on the pace, but nothing as big as the pace changes the Garmin recorded! Crazy what that wind will do to your HR!! Ended up averaging 8:29 pace with an average HR of 163. Mile splits were 8:41, 8:09, 8:09, 8:20, 8:39, 8:49, 8:42. Finished things off with 6 very nice strides.

Friday, December 6th
7M w/ 3M tempo @ 6:25-6:30 pace. Iced in and can't get anywhere. No run at all today...

Saturday, December 7th
3M easy + 6 x 100m strides. 10M easy on the treadmill + 2M walking on ice. :) I included the walk to and from the gym because I'm more than confident that I'll be very sore from it tomorrow, haha! I wanted to get in my 40 mile week as planned, but Jake did not want me to do my long run tomorrow if I went long today. So, quick change of plans and I did tomorrow's long run today to get in the 40 miles, and tomorrow I'll do yesterday's tempo run workout. Perfect! Nice and easy run on the treadmill. I did not run as slow as I have been when going by HR, but I did try to stay conscious of what I would be running with the HR monitor and not get much faster than that. Ended up at exactly 8:00 pace for the run. SUPER tight left calf that almost stopped me multiple times during the run. Got to nurse that back today!

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