Final Mid-Week Run of Month One!

I can’t believe I’ve already been training for 4 weeks! I’m feeling great (in spite of being out of the circuit with my little neck injury) – it’s funny that my long runs seem to be so much easier than my mid-week shorter ones…probably because I have a coach and other people for distractions. But I’m so happy with my short ones too – really proud of working on my “speed” and endurance. Tonight I had another quick 3 miles and I decided to run them straight through. My RunKeeper app told me I was keeping up a good pace – about a full minute slower than what my marathon pace will hopefully be. A note on that app – I love how the voice chimes in every 5 minutes with your distance and average pace; I’ll be real runners find that annoying (or fixate on it), but for me it’s just a great way to keep up. I was also pleased that my first mile was my slowest, my second was my fastest, and my third was just a few seconds longer than my second. Sometimes my goal (like last night) is to finish fast, but today it wasn’t really a goal – it just happened!

This morning I was supposed to get up and go to my favorite strength training class at the gym, but when the alarm went off I wanted to kill it. So I slept in. I felt guilty for missing it because I know how important it is to continue to lift and maintain muscle mass, plus I know that squats and lunges are so good for runners. So after I got home I popped in one of my workout DVDs and used my hand weights – I did that for about 35 minutes or so, and then finished up with a series of weighted squats and lunges. I feel much better now.

The marathon organizers (Bank of America) send us these cutesy emails from time to time, and today’s just really sunk in – the official route has been published and there was also an overview of all 29 neighborhoods we’ll be running through. I got a stomach ache just reading it! Looking at the map, the first 13.1 miles will all be roads I’m very familiar with (all along the North Side, where I live, and the Loop, where I work); I’ll be familiar with some of the second half but not nearly as much. I’m trying to decide if that’s a good thing or if I should get some area familiarization before the run…do I want it to be a surprise or do I want to be more comfortable with the terrain. Clearly I have time to decide this – just something on my mind!

Tomorrow is my rest day and Saturday’s long run will be 10 miles. I know that for me it’ll start to get REALLY real once we exceed 13.1, since I just did that distance in April. I haven’t run more than 13 miles since 2003!

Off to eat dinner and get to bed. Love “sleeping in” till 7 on Friday mornings!

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