Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Pittsburgh Marathon Training: Week 18

One of my favorite times of the year has finally arrived - race week!  Runners will begin to descend on the city of bridges for all the different race adventures that await them.  As this week begins, it's still a little crazy to think that 18 weeks ago, the process had just begun.

Monday: 3 Miles - Today started a very hectic week with lots of things happening around the house.  The wife needed some time to finish up the cake for her cousin's wedding (the cake turned out amazing!) meaning I had the peanut for my run.  As we started out, the sky above looked pretty ominous mirroring the forecast of rain for the day.  And as you can expect, we were about a half mile into the warm-up when the heavens let loose.  While peanut stayed perfectly dry in her stroller, dad was not so lucky.  I decided to head back home accepting that this run may just have to be on the treadmill.  Lo and behold, by the time I climbed the hill and reached the driveway, the rain had stopped.  Go figure!  In already being wet and the little one still sound asleep, we headed back out to finish the workout.  With my knee still tender, we kept a very conservative pace as we enjoyed the smell of spring after a fresh rain.

Someone was clearly not bothered by the rain

At least we got a rainbow!
Tuesday: Rest Day

Wednesday: 4 Miles - Today was my last run before race weekend.  Maybe it was only having one rest day since the last workout, but my knee just wasn't having any of it.  Tight and sore, I hobbled along the miles attempting to just finish them as best as possible.  I knew that the next few days would be all about rest and I was gambling on that being just what I needed.

Thursday: Rest Day

Friday: Expo Volunteering - I can think of no better way to get into the spirit of race weekend than spending it volunteering at the Expo.  While I had spent last year assisting with packet pick-up, this year I wanted a more active role of helping runners get ready for the weekend - race info table it was!  I felt like I was really helping people to ease their nerves and prepare them for all the fun to come. For the record, the most popular question of the night: So where is the best place to park?

Saturday: Pittsburgh Marathon 5K - In being one of those crazy people who thinks the Steel Challenge (running a 5K today and another race tomorrow) sounds like fun, I headed downtown to meet up with friends for the race.  I planned to keep things easy knowing that 26.2 miles awaited me tomorrow.  In the end, I decided to run with my friend Mike, helping him to reach a new PR for the distance.  Afterward, we headed to the Expo to walk around for a while more before parting ways.  

Sunday: Pittsburgh Marathon - Check out my race recap for all the gritty details!

Wow, still hard to believe it's all over.  Going forward, I'll be spending a few weeks recovering and giving some thought to what I want to accomplish next.  Thank you for following along on this journey!

Happy running!

Pittsburgh Marathon Training: Week 17

The clock just keeps ticking bringing us closer and closer to race day.  Going into this week, I still had a good bit of trepidation as my body just wasn't healing like the taper was suppose to accomplish.  I had a feeling that more days of rest days were ahead than mileage.

Monday: 4 Miles - After Saturday's run and taking yesterday off, that internal struggle of whether or no a I should run has been playing havoc with my head.  Since my knee seems to get just as tight from sitting around as it does while working out, I hoped that putting a few miles wouldn't do more harm than good.  Taking things relatively easy after lots of foam rolling and stretching, the soreness only developed during the final half mile or so.  I'd call that improvement.

Tuesday: Rest Day

Wednesday: 6 Miles - Following a rest day, I was feeling decently well going into today's workout.  In having an event at school in the evening, I brought my running gear with me so I could squeeze in the run between the work day and when things got rolling at night.  Between the ascents, downhills, and uneven sidewalks, I was hurting by the end.  "Overdoing it" would be an understatement.  I resolved to take the next few days off to get myself back to where I had been on Monday.

Thursday: Rest Day

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday: 8 Miles - Over the past few weeks, our group has been slowly shrinking as each person runs his or her goal race.  At this point, the only people left were those of us taking on Pittsburgh next weekend.  We kept a relatively gentle pace talking strategy for the race as well as just joking around.  Before leaving, a few of us made plans to run the marathon together, since we are shooting for the same goal time.  It will be nice to have the support when the miles get tough.

Sunday: Rest Day

Well, my prediction at the beginning of the week came try.  Most of the time this cycle was spent just trying to keep further damage from occurring.  With only a week to go, my confidence level for hitting my goal had greatly dwindled.  But at this point, there is not much more that can be done than just to do my best - that's all that can be asked.

Happy running!