Mixing things up and setting new records

Six weeks to go until race day (three weeks to taper time!)

This was a pull back week for marathon training, meaning that instead of increasing my long run mileage from the 15 I did the week prior, I pulled back and ran 13. I’ll increase to 17 miles next week.

It was also a week of modifying schedules, and pulling back in other ways. I had a busy week at work so I left the office late a couple of nights getting me home too late (and hungry) to run. And at least two of the nights I came home on time, I spent the evening working.

Trying to make up for missed workouts, two of the nights I did run, I combined running with strength training in the same night. I also switched up my long run from my usual Saturday morning to Sunday evening. Lisa and I planned to return to Badwater (aka the Palos/Sag Harbor Forest Preserve) but she had a change of plans and couldn’t run Saturday morning. Brian was leaving Sunday afternoon, so I wanted to spend time with him Sunday morning so … we decided to go crazy and run Sunday evening.

It ended up working out on many levels, including the fact that I got to spend a few hours with my college friend and sorority little sister, Carrie, Saturday afternoon. She was in town with her husband and son (whom I met for the first time Saturday!) and they were kind enough to share her for a few hours. We had a great time lunching and shopping on Michigan Ave.

Sunday afternoon turned out to be ideal for running Badwater. The temperatures, in the low 50’s, were perfect for a long run. It wasn’t as muddy as the last visit, but I managed to record my first (and, hopefully, only) fall of the running season.

Lisa and I split up for the first eight miles. She’s not training, so she hiked while I ran and we met back up to run the last five together. We were basically running opposite directions in the same loop. I made my way around the loop and had about another mile and a half to go. I headed down a side trail, this one way less developed than others. As I hurdled over several downed trees and ducked under low-hanging branches, I saw Lisa heading toward me.

“This is THE Badwater of the Badwater trail,” Lisa said.

Me: “Yeah, I know. I’m jumping through an obstacle course.”

Well, I had no idea it was going to get much worse. About 30 seconds after passing her, I was down in this narrow, muddy ravine trying to navigate through a maze of tree roots sticking up from below, and branches hanging down from above on a trail wide enough to only run with one foot directly in front of the other. All of a sudden, I was flying face first into the mud.

A loop from my shoe laces got caught on a tree root and when I pulled my foot forward, not realizing it was caught, it was like someone pulled my leg out from under me. Luckily, I broke my fall with my left knee before I got a mouth full of mud.

Also, lucky for me, it was mud and not rocks or concrete so I was able to hop back up and continue on. I got a little dirty, but nothing was broken and I didn’t even tear my pants!

I knew I couldn’t make it though training without at least one epic fall. 🙂

BUT (!!!) despite my fall, and the rough terrain in general, I knocked another minute off my personal best half marathon time, set only a week ago! We got back to the car with about 0.3 miles to hit 13. I looked at the time and realized I was two minutes under my best 13.10 run. With energy left to sprint, I went for it and succeeded. Another record-setting run for the books.

Week totals:
Total miles: 22 miles
Number of runs: 3
Longest run: 13 miles
Cross-training: 3 strength-training sessions
Weight: I know I said last week I wasn’t going to continue monitoring it, but my clothes were definitely looser so I had to know. I am four pounds down from last week!


About travelerontherun

I am a chronic adventurer who loves to see and experience new places. What I really love most is experiencing those places after parking my RV and lacing up my running shoes.
This entry was posted in exercise, Fitness, Marathon training, Running, Stuff that would only happen to me, Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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