Monday, March 19, 2012

The Zen Run

Wow! Week 9 of training for Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon is finished. Only 8 weeks to go until the Marathon. And that also means that this is my Half Marathon race week; I'm excited to see what I can do this week!

March has really surprised us here in central OH weather-wise. This past week was more late springlike than end of winter. I've worn shorts, t-shirts and even got to try out my new running skort! Spring can come early every year, I don't mind!

I am taking part in the March Pushing Our Luck ChalIenge. This was Denise's idea after our February abs challenge ended. She decided to up the challenge; keep going with the abs and also add arms by using the Hundred Push Ups Challenge. I noticed that just doing weight training (at home) once or twice a week, while better than none, wasn't really increasing my strength.  If I can never do 100 pushups at one time, I'll be ok with that, but I am enjoying the increasing strength and toning in my upper body. I've now completed two full weeks of the challenge (based on my initial test, I was to start in week 3) and they are getting easier! And let's face it, if I don't have a "challenge", I am not as diligent about any exercises other than running.

Thursday afternoon I was able to get out and enjoy the beautiful weather for a run. I tried out a new path along the Hoover Reservoir and had a great time, even running across the dam twice. I LOVE running along water and wish I could run there more often. Unfortunately, with my early morning running schedule it just doesn't work (about 20-25 minute drive from my house).

Saturday, we met EARLY for our long run. Kate needed to finish up early, so we met at 6:00. After not getting much sleep Friday night (mom duty), I didn't have very many expectations for the run. I was tired and out of sorts Saturday morning and forgot my Garmin at home. Turned out to be the best thing ever! I LOVED the feeling of just running. I wasn't worried about pace, I wasn't watching the splits. It was AWESOME! I just felt nice and relaxed on the run and could just enjoy the beautiful weather. My schedule called for 10 miles as a taper week, but I figured depending on how I felt, I would run an extra mile or two. Felt good enough to keep going and ended up with a very comfortable Half Marathon training run. I will definitely be leaving my watch at home more often on group runs. For my Type A side, I did need to know the mileage and the time, but other than that I was surprisingly ok with no more information. This run also left me feeling really confident going into the half marathon on March 25.

Week 9 stats:

Monday: 6.04 miles 
Tuesday: Strength Training and week 4, day 2, level 3 of 100push ups
Wednesday: 8 miles tempo(ish) run
Thursday: 5.6 miles afternoon run; week 4 day 3, level 3 of 100 push-ups
Friday: 5.15 miles
Saturday: 13.1 miles
Sunday: Rest day (20 minute family bike ride), exhaustion test for 100 push-up challenge to determine level for week 5.

Total for week 9 of marathon training: 37.9 miles

Have a great week training and/or racing!

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