The First Three Weeks

I can’t believe the first three weeks of training for the Ottawa Half Marathon have already come and gone. I’m not really sure how I feel about this training cycle or what the exact approach will be. As I’ve said before, only time will tell. For now, Coach is giving me a weekly mileage and a breakdown of about how many miles each run should be. I’m sure she has more in store for me but we’re taking things super easy to start.

Week 1

Monday: Refine Method
Tuesday: 4 miles
Wednesday: Rest (read: lazy)
Thursday: 4 miles
Friday: Refine Method
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: 5 miles

I woke up Saturday morning at 6am and my phone told me it was 11 degrees feels like two. I’m not usually one to shy away from running in cold temperatures but I don’t think I was mentally ready for 6:30am runs quite yet. Especially when it feels like two degrees. We have a whole summer of those early runs ahead of us. So I decided, very uncharacteristically, to go back to sleep and push my long run to Sunday. And I’m so glad I did. It was 39 degrees. Plus, wearing really high heels for the first time in a long time and dancing at my cousin’s Bat Mitzvah on Saturday counts as cross training, right?

Weekly mileage=13 miles

First sunrise miles of spring training!

First sunrise miles of spring training!

Week 2

Week two kicked my butt. I know what you’re thinking. It’s only week two! I’ve been pushing myself to get stronger and the 5:15-5:30am alarms that this entails have kicked my butt. I hadn’t woken up this early, this many days in a row, in a really long time. I suppose it will take some getting used to again.

Getting out of bed is the hardest part!

Getting out of bed is the hardest part!

Monday: Refine Method
Tuesday: 5 miles
Wednesday: Refine Method
Thursday: 4 miles
Friday: 6 miles *longest run since November*
Saturday: 60 minute Flywheel
Sunday: 3 miles inspired by the NYC Half Marathon

I decided to do my long run on Friday this week so I could go to spin with my friend Dara on Saturday. We wanted to take a class together, she had never taken a class with Ryan, and he was teaching at the Upper West Side studio. Perfect, since we both live there, right? Of course, the class he was teaching was 60 minutes. 60 minutes!?! I’ll admit, I was terrified for 60 minute Flywheel. Yes, I’ve been going regularly again but I am more than ready to be done after 45 minutes. But they say nothing good ever happens inside your comfort zone so I was ready for the challenge. The class was AH-MAZING! I felt like a million dollars after that class. And sweaty. Very, very sweaty. After months of patience, physical therapy, and hard work, I was so proud of my what my body was able to do that day. I loved this hour class with Ryan and will definitely be back for more. If you haven’t taken a class with him yet, what are you waiting for?

Sunday, I met up with some of the best NYC cheerleaders to cheer for the NYC Half Marathon. I met Susan (and her super nice boyfriend, Eric) by my apartment and walked down to our cheer spot at 53rd Street and 7th Avenue together; obviously grabbing some coffee along the way (it was very early). We met up with Jess, Christine (who looks amazing after just having shoulder surgery like a week before; I definitely did not look that good last year when the wing and I cheered), Abby, Leticia, Nicole, and Michele. We had a blast cheering for everyone. Collectively, we probably knew like 30 people running which made it even more fun. It is so inspiring cheering at a race. So much so that I was inspired to go run a few extra miles for the week after we finished cheering. Coach approved; don’t worry!

Thanks for the picture, Leticia!

Have cowbells, will travel! Thanks for the picture, Leticia!

Weekly mileage=18 miles

*highest mileage week since November*

Week 3

Monday: 6 miles

The sunrise was outstanding Monday morning! Susan nailed it though, go look at her picture!

The sunrise was outstanding Monday morning! Susan nailed it though, go look at her picture!

I was so exhausted on Monday morning that I accidentally ran six miles instead of the planned five. I know what you’re thinking. Who accidentally runs six miles instead of five? My plan, upon going to sleep, was to run the inner four-mile loop in Central Park. I suppose, on autopilot, from being so exhausted, I ran the lower loop of the park. Somewhere around mile three, I wondered why it was so much lighter than it had been a few days earlier. I know it doesn’t get lighter in the mornings that quickly. As I began making my way from the 102nd Street transverse to the West Side of the park my watch hit four miles. Four miles!?! How did I already run four miles when the goal was five and I was way more than a mile from home!?! And then it hit me. I was running the lower five-mile loop; not the inner four. I wasn’t going to run five miles and take a cab home so I just sucked it up and ran the extra mile. I figured it would make for a shorter run later in the week. Or so I thought…

Tuesday: sick
Wednesday: sick
Thursday: sick
Friday: sick
Saturday: sick
Sunday: 3 miles

The crisp, cold air felt amazing after being inside for days!

The crisp, cold air felt amazing after being inside for days!

After five days in bed, it felt amazing to move my legs and breathe in some fresh air. The sun felt incredible. While the run didn’t feel as incredible, understandably, I was happy to finally be back in Central Park and outside the four walls of my apartment.

Weekly mileage=9 miles

The things half marathons were made of!?!

I think, by now, I’ve learned to take setbacks in stride. Just as I was finally feeling stronger, and like I was making some progress, I was hit with a nasty virus and found myself sicker than I’ve been in six or seven years; since I had the flu. I tested negative for the flu but this was in no way the common cold. This virus knocked me off my feet. Literally. I don’t think I’ve ever, in my adult life, missed four days of work because I was too sick to get out of bed. I guess there’s a first time for everything. I must admit, missing an entire week of training is much easier to deal with when you have little to no expectations and are simply going with the flow and seeing where the training cycle takes you. I’m finally feeling better and ready to slowly get back to training. I might even be itching for Coach to give me some workouts. I have been doing all of my runs at an easy pace and feeling good. Maybe it’s time to let go of some fear and put Coach back in charge; more than just how many miles I should run each week. Like I said before, only time will tell.

I’m honored, and humbled, to share that I was featured in the April issue of Women’s Running Magazine. If you haven’t seen it yet, go grab one and check it out. I may have bought four or five copies!

Tell Me.

Have you ever been knocked out for a whole week with a virus?

How did you know when it was time to push yourself again?

Are you tired of my sunrise pictures? I’m going to keep taking them but I was just curious.




One thought on “The First Three Weeks

  1. Pingback: Ottawa Half Marathon “Training” Week 4 | Once in a Mile

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