Week 8- 11.5M running, 300' x-training

Spending another "week" in the pool to baby my quad/ femur and shin a bit more. Hopefully this isn't going to be a recurring theme, but I want to take a small trip for a race with Jake next week, and that means no risks injury-wise. I plan to aqua jog/ swim all week, and then hopefully do my hills on Friday and long run on Saturday.

Sunday, July 27th
Rest day!

Monday, July 28th
90' in the pool. 60' aqua jogging, 30' lap swimming. Quad still hurts, but only really when I'm aqua jogging; I don't notice any pain while lap swimming.

Tuesday, July 29th
10' bike.
40' lower body weights.
30' lap swimming and pool running.

Wednesday, July 30th
30' bike.
40' upper body weights
40' lap swimming.

Thursday, July 31st
30' bike.

Friday, August 1st
30' bike.
30' easy run. Same aches, but nothing bad enough to stop the run or mess with my stride. I actually felt really good energy wise. Got in 3.8 miles averaging 7:52 pace, give or take a bit due to trees.

Saturday, August 2nd
60' long run. Everything hurt on this one, especially on the way out. Thankfully I woke up on the way back and started rolling again. Mile splits were 8:34, 8:16, 8:12, 7:48, 7:47, 7:17, 7:08, 7:06 pace for the last 0.7.


Week 7- 30.5M running, 270' x-training

Woohoo! We did it!! Last week was my highest mileage week since 2013 and I couldn't be more happy about that! Each week I want to add something to my training to move it forward a bit - This week I want to add core work. :) I plan to do some structured core, rehab/ injury prevention, and general strength work throughout the week.

Sunday, July 20th
Rest day!

Monday, July 21st
15' warm up, Mono Fartlek (2 x 90"/90", 4 x 60"/60", 4 x 30"/30", 4 x 15"/15"), 10' cool down. I woke up exhausted (sleepy exhausted) and considered going back to sleep and using the treadmill during lunch; then when I actually started running, my arch and shins hurt enough that I considered just doing 30 minutes easy and trying the workout tomorrow. Luckily my first mile was 8:15 pace and didn't feel hard, and that was enough to convince me that I should run the workout today. :) I did butt kicks and high knees for 30 steps each and then started the workout (no strides). Needless to say I was shocked to look down at 60" and see sub 6:10 pace! I allowed myself to slow down the last 30" of that rep knowing it would be a long workout and I didn't want to jog the easy portions. I decided staying in my warm up pace range was good enough for the easy portions, but then looked down and saw 7:07 pace midway thru the first recovery. Wow! It didn't stay that comfortable for the whole workout (not even close), but those first 10 minutes today were enough to keep the flame burning in the back of my mind. I ended up averaging 6:52 pace; hard segments were generally between 6:00 and 6:20 pace with two outliers. Recoveries were in the mid to low 7's for the longer reps, then slowed down to low 8's for the shorter reps.
40' pool running.

Tuesday, July 22nd
30' easy run + hill sprints. I woke up at 5:30 with the intention of running, but while doing the toe walk and lunges in my warm up circuit, I knew that wasn't smart. Last night I taped up my arch and ankle/lower shin and it provided immediate relief so I thought I would be okay to run today. I think I need to play it safe and just aqua jog though. This pain is strong enough that I'm pretty sure it will eventually force a day off, and I would rather that day be a 30 minute easy run considering the rest of this week is 60' runs and hills.
Life happened and it got the better of me today. Car problems left me stranded all day, arch is still aching, and my I'm on day 4 of an upset stomach. Tomorrow is a new day...

Wednesday, July 23rd
60' long run. Made it just a little bit farther today than I did on Saturday - 7.72 miles averaging 7:47 pace. Definitely a harder way to do it though. On Saturday my first 3.5 miles were between 8:05 and 8:40, then I dropped it on my way back. Today my first mile was 8:15 and the rest were mid 7:30's to high 7:40's. My arch is really the main problem this week. TFL/ IT band is manageable, but the arch is pretty painful. Also, I had to stop at 48 minutes today for a breather. I was really panicking too because I felt like I needed water (80 degrees when we left our car to run), but there were no fountains nearby! I'm bummed it wasn't a continuous run, but I felt like I was getting overheated and new I was about to fall apart if I didn't do something to salvage the rest of the run.
50' pool running. My arch even hurts doing this?!?!

Thursday, July 24th
30' easy run. Made up Tuesday's easy run today. Got in 3.78 miles which was a pleasant surprise. I wanted to keep it easy because I had a lot of aches and was running in the heat (89 degrees according to the garmin), so I choose not to look at pace on the entire run. The first time I checked the watch was after the 3rd mile beep to see how many minutes I had left (I was expecting only 2 or 3), and the time was around 24 minutes! Averaged 7:56 pace for the run and didn't feel too bad energy wise. Big time aches today though. Both shins (left is worse), right arch and heel, and left quad.
60' aqua jog.

Friday, July 25th
15' warm up, 8 x 60" uphill, 15' 10' cool down. This was definitely one of my more miserable runs- at least for the warm up and cool down. On the warm up, my shin was the biggest pain, but I actually stopped the cool down early for my quad, not my shin. It was getting progressively more painful on the cool down and by 9 minutes I knew I wasn't being smart. The hill reps were about the only good thing about the day. Going up the hill I really didn't have any pain, just fatigue! ;) Going down all the pains came back, haha. I averaged 6:12 pace for the uphill portions, which is over 20 seconds faster than what I averaged on the 90" hills last week!
60' aqua jog.

Saturday, July 26th
60' aqua jog.
60' long run with 1', 1', 2', 1', 1', 2' surges on a 5' cycle. Ran on the treadmill so that Jake and I could sleep in after a long day yesterday. I started the run at 8:35 pace, then knocked the speed down by 0.1 every five minutes. I started the surges at 7:30 pace and then knocked the surges down by 0.1 every time as well. My last 10 minutes of the run were 7:30 pace for the first 5 minutes and 7:21 pace for the last five minutes. My last surge was 7:03 pace. Next time I will want to start the surges at 7:00 pace and go down from there. The treadmill ended up being a great option for this run, too. I'd like to do this workout on the treadmill again. My left quad and hip flexor are the worst they have been thus far. They hurt when aqua jogging as well, though they didn't hurt the first week that I was aqua jogging.


Week 6- 28.5M running, 250' x-training

Back to running this week! I'm excited to see how everything feels! I'm really hopeful that the TFL and shin issues will be in the past and I can get back in the swing of things with a clean slate!

Sunday, July 13th
Rest day! No cross training or running!

Monday, July 14th
15' w/u, 8 x 1' moderate to hard/ 1' easy, 15' c/d. I felt great energy-wise, but my shin started hurting about 0.6 miles in and my TFL/ knee/ IT band (whichever it is) started hurting after the first stride. I do feel like I kept my effort level in the right range for the entire run though, so I am pleased with that. Warm up averaged 8:36 pace and cool down averaged 8:12 pace. The fast 1 minute segments were between 6:00 and 6:20 pace, and I averaged 7:29 pace for the full fartlek time. I ran much slower than I should have on the easy minutes, so that will be the first area I want to improve on next time.
60' bike. 30' x-training. I biked for 15 minutes but it was hurting my TFL so badly that I switched to the elliptical. The elliptical hurt my left quad which has been sore for the past week or two. I decided I was better off skipping the full x-training session and not furthering any inflammation or damage that was already there. I will stick to the pool until I get these things cleared up.

Tuesday, July 15th
30' recovery run. I felt great when I started this run - I actually felt like I was moving quick and sort of felt like myself as a college runner. I am not looking at my Garmin at all on runs right now, only after the mile beeps. When the first mile beeped, I looked down and it was 9:09 pace!!! :( Yikes!!! The next miles were a little better, but according to my Garmin I never went below 7:42 pace on the entire run! The rest of the miles were 8:22, 8:06, and 7:56 (for the last five minutes). Got in 3.55 miles for the day. I skipped the strides because my TFL/ knee was the worst it has been so far. It really feels like I could step on it at any moment and it break in two at my knee.
60' aqua jog/ lap swimming. I alternated 15' pool running with 15' freestyle swimming again. I have no pool running belt, so it's a little more strain on my hip flexors than it was when I did long pool running sessions; hence the lap swimming breaks. The swimming is probably very good for my lungs and hear though... It is not easy on me by any means.

Wednesday, July 16th
15' w/u, 10' @ sub 7:00 pace, 15' c/d. Not a bad day... a big thanks to God for the nice weather this morning! Warm up averaged 8:22 pace and even though I felt my shin and knee, neither were as bad as yesterday. Did one set up high knees and butt kicks and two short strides, then got started (stayed in my trainers). I came through the five minute mark averaging 6:41 pace and finished it off averaging 6:33 pace, so I definitely cut down on the last five minutes. My garmin says 6:37 thru the mile, 6:24 pace for the remaining minutes. Cool down was the 2:30 easy, 30" quick again... Since it was 15 minutes I did five sets. The surges ranged from 5:30 pace to 5:46 pace and I averaged 7:34 pace for the entire cool down.
60' aqua jog/ lap swimming. I actually only got in 56 minutes today. Apparently they have an aerobics class at 9:00 three days a week, and since I couldn't get in right at 8:00, I lost a few minutes. Not a big deal at all, but I can be kind of anal about time... I don't like to finish on random numbers. ;) Still a good workout regardless. 

Thursday, July 17th
60' x-training. I am trying to extend the length of time that I actually aqua jog, so today I did 20 minutes aqua jog, 20 minutes lap swimming, 20 minutes aqua jog. Ideally I'll start doing fartlek intervals next week. It's just so much extra strain without the flotation belt that I don't want to start adding extra forces until my hip flexors and everything have adjusted to the easy pool running.

Friday, July 18th
15' w/u, 6x90" uphill, 15' c/d. God is being extra kind to us this week! Upper 60's this morning - In July - In Texas!! Warm up felt nice (8:27 average pace), hills were killer hard, but very good for me (ranged between 6:33 and 6:39 for all but the 5th one, which was 6:46 pace). I tried to keep a higher effort on the recovery portions today compared to on Monday's fartlek, but next time I will just relax on the recovery. These will definitely be very good for me though. 15' cool down was nice and uneventful (8:09 average pace). Got in about 6.5 miles today. I used the cream again and once again had minimal pain on the side/back of my knee. Makes me really excited! Now just to figure out a way to cover the shin pain. :)
60' aqua jog/ lap swimming. No swim. Somehow I managed to get swimmer's ear in the last week and a half. I bought drops this morning to get rid of it, as well as ear plugs to use in the pool from now on. :)

Saturday, July 19th
60' long run. Good run, bad knee. :) Covered 7.6 miles in 7:53 pace; the last four miles were between 7:25 and 7:34, so I am happy. This was my first continuous run over 6 miles... every other time I have stopped mid-way for a workout or a pit stop. Making progress!
60' 40' aqua jog/ lap swimming. Still no lap swimming yet, but I did go pool running until my knee told me it was time to stop for the day (40'). For the time I was in the pool though, it was good. I hate going and I hate doing it and it's one of the most boring things ever, but I do think it has made a huge difference in the short two weeks I've been doing it. I just feel smoother and more fluid. Not more fit, but more natural in my form/ stride.


Week 5- 10M running, 350' x-training

This ended up being an impromptu vacation and a recovery week. I spent the week with my parents who live on a ranch in the country. They have access to a heated indoor pool with a deep end and aqua exercise equipment, plus the pool is open 24/7. I have had really bad shin and TFL pain for a while now, and on my first rest day of the week, when my mom and I went to the pool I noticed I didn't have any shin or TFL pain while running in the water. After talking with Jake we decided to make it a "recovery" week and spend the rest of the week in the pool while I had access to it.

Sunday,  July 6th
4M run + 9 x 8" quick strides. First run with my new Garmin 220! Mile splits were 8:24, 8:02, 7:45, 7:34. I ran on the dirt trails at Jenkins Park in Baytown, then did my drills and sprints in the parking lot. Lots of TFL and shin pain still, but energy-wise I felt good.

Monday, July 7th
3M easy, 1M time trial, 2M w/ 150m surges each lap. I stayed on the track for this entire run. I'm scared to death of dogs, so when we are at my parent's house I prefer to stay on the track. :) I felt good on the warmup and on my drills, but the mile killed me. I wanted to stop after about 900m! I came thru at 89, 3:01, ?, 6:09. I was too tired to look down after my third lap. :) I didn't necessarily have pain while running, I just felt completely out of gas and by the third lap I had pretty bad lactic acid. I was really crushed to see 6:09 after knowing how hard it was for me to run it. I guess that explains my struggle on the tempo runs though.

Tuesday, July 8th
60' pool running

Wednesday, July 9th
60' pool running

Thursday, July 10th
80' pool running

Friday, July 11th
60' pool running

Saturday, July 12th
90' pool running/ lap swimming. I alternated every 15 minutes and kept the lap swimming at around 2:20/ 100m. It was a good workout and went by really fast. My left quad muscle still hurts though... even after a week of no running!