Whew. The final week of training is done and now I get a break from workouts for a few weeks and I get to run some races. Woo to the hoo. I haven’t done nearly as many races yet this year as I typically do, so I’m pretty excited about it.
With that being said, this week wore. me. out. Working, training and doing life felt like a lot this week. This summer my work schedule quickly escalated from part-time to full-time to over-time and I’m not exactly thrilled about it. I’ve been trying to focus on being intentional about how I am spending my time and making sure that I am spending it wisely.
There are 168 hours in a week. I am spending ~ 50 of them working, ~ 60 of them sleeping (assuming 8 hours a night and a couple of bonus hours for naps on the weekends) and ~ 10 of them running, so that still leaves ~ 50 hours for whatever else life has in store. For some reason, thinking about it in terms of hours helps. I can do a lot of things in the 50 hours that I have that aren’t dedicated to anything in particular!
Monday: 5 miles (8:45 pace)
I was tired Monday morning and was pretty much dreading the week. I’m not proud of my attitude, but it is what it is. I basically wanted to curl up in a ball and cry when my alarm went off. Instead of doing that, I went out for an easy run with Daniel and that definitely was more productive than they curl up in a ball and cry alternative.
Tuesday: 2 mi. WU, 4 X 1 mile repeats (6:01, 6:03, 6:00, 6:09), 2 mi. CD
We hit the track first thing Tuesday morning for my first big workout of the week … mile repeats. These were supposed to be done at close to 5K pace. Daniel ran the warm up and the first two repeats with me, which of course was a huge help. He was planning to do a bike workout Tuesday evening, so he didn’t want to completely trash his legs.
Side note: He didn’t actually make it to the group ride because he got tied up in court. A month or so ago, we had just gotten home from a run and we witnessed a bit of an altercation between two ladies in our neighborhood. There were verbal threats and harsh words exchanged and then one of the ladies decided to use her mail to beat the other lady up. It was truly bizarre. Daniel and I pretty much saw the whole thing and Daniel got in the middle of them and broke up the fight. He later get subpoenaed to appear in court regarding the case.
Anywho … I finished up the last two repeats by myself and was just proud that I got it done. My pace faded on the last one, but I’m not too worried about that. I know that I put in adequate work to get the benefits from the workout.
Wednesday: 7 miles (8:51 pace) + 4 miles (8:52 pace)
Wednesday was an easy treadmill run before work and another easy treadmill run after work. So exciting, I know.
Thursday: 9 miles (8:37 pace) + 5 miles (8:20 pace)
Thursday morning I was *supposed to* do my second track workout of the week, but that didn’t happen. I was in major procrastination mode by this point in the week and the idea of doing another track workout was really daunting. I did an easy run with Daniel that morning instead.
Rebecca and I went to a new group run from a local coffee shop after work Thursday evening. They were only doing 2 to 3 miles, so we pretty much just ended up doing our own thing, which worked just fine.
Friday: 7 miles (9:09 pace)
In the spirit digging myself further into the hole of procrastination with the track workout, I ran easy on the treadmill again Friday morning.
Saturday: 10.3 miles (8:42 pace)
Ran with the typical group Saturday morning, but kept it a little shorter than my typical long run mileage (since I still had that darn track workout looming over me). After a good run and coffee conversations with friends, I was feeling much better.
Sunday: 2 mi. WU, 12 X 400 w/ 1:30 recovery jog (80, 80, 81, 85, 85, 86, 87, 86, 90, 89, 91, 88), 2 mi. CD
Clearly I had a mental block against this lovely little workout, so it shouldn’t come as a complete shock that its execution was a bit of a mess. My goal pace was 80 to 83 seconds per lap, which I was able to do for exactly 3 of the 12 repeats. When my fourth repeat went over goal pace and felt incredibly difficult, I *almost* pulled the plug on the workout altogether (as in I clicked stop on my watch and had my finger on the button ready to hit “save,” which would’ve meant that the workout was over).
I had to give myself a bit of a pep talk. If this was a race and I was struggling, I absolutely wouldn’t quit. I only wanted to quit because I knew I wasn’t going to be able to hit the paces that I was supposed to and that made the workout a complete bust (in my head). Sometimes training is as much of a mental struggle as a physical challenge. Today was one of those days for me for sure. The good news is that I finished the workout and I am counting that as a major mental victory.
My biggest takeaway from this week is that I am more than ready for a break from hard workouts. I’m really looking forward to the races that I have coming up. Even so, I am trying to stay in touch with where I am and to make sure that I don’t end up with a major case of burnout (like I did last summer). I recognize that it is really hard for me to work 50+ hours per week and keep a balanced, happy life. I feel kind of stuck with the choices that I made that got me into this position to begin with though and right now, I don’t really have a short-term solution.
Sorry for the downer of a post. Tomorrow brings a new week. Hopefully we can all make it a good one!