Bare Minimum Half Training Update 6: Back end Loading

I have to admit that I feel a whole lot lighter giving myself a break on Wednesday posts for the next month. That said I didn’t exactly get to training any sooner in the week.

Friday: We’ve been working far from home this week and so we’ve been putting in long days to make the journey more ‘worth it’. Friday the weather forecast and the drizzly fog in the morning made it look like there was no point venturing out just to have to turn around and head home again. It turned out to be the wrong call but a great day off. I did my own thing two days this week work wise so it was nice to spend part of the day chillin’ with honey. In the afternoon the weather cleared and I had a huge block of unscheduled time, sure there were other things I could have done, but I decided to knock out this week’s long run first. I’ve been running in another direction for my long runs this time and that’s sort of made me excited about the process again. Even though these aren’t my longest runs ever like last year it’s a bit exciting that they are the longest ones in that direction now. This run took me by honey’s biggest project ever and year’s later it struck me all over again just how amazing a project it was. This 14 wasn’t easy but it was a whole lot easier than last week’s 13 km.

When you’re training for an endurance event at some point you’ll run out of glycogen stores and have to start working directly from fat for energy. That transition is sometimes referred to as hitting the wall. At some point long runs get long enough for you to start practicing that and I think I’m there. In theory this happens at 16 km but of course that exact point is a little different for every person and probably varies over time. In the past I’ve found that the 13 – 16 km range sucks but after that point in training I feel like I can go forever. Ps this is just realizing the third time I’ve trained for a race this long. I also decided this week to get to 20 km on my longest long run even though the plan only has me going to 18 km.

All in all it was a good run, I did have a bit of trouble keeping the pace down for the first 5km or so. By the last 5 my legs really were burning again which I don’t remember in previous training cycles. But I do remember some miserable runs last year including one where I texted back something bird of witchy with a B to my stepdad when he was only trying to be funny. But by the time I was running 24 km I was feeling great so hopefully that starts soon.

Sunday: There is this favorite route I have around here that is basically a little loop inside a bigger loop that takes me by two beaches and is full of stunning ocean views and breezes save for 1 km of the 10k. Often times in training I’m running out and backs over the same route to get a certain distance, or because the main road has the most streetlights if it’s really early or late. So when a training run distance coincides with one of my favorite routes I get really excited. An interval run was on the schedule but I usually will view those as a fartlek instead matching the number of fast vs slow songs to kinda sorta match the prescribed interval. It’s a lot more fun and in theory involves less looking at your watch. It was a really great run which you can’t always say in training!

Monday: I really do mean to get all this done by Sunday each week but… I got up super early to workout but then I realized that I had a car appointment today. Fitting a run in when you are essentially waiting for something else to happen is a great idea. Dropped off the keys and ran away although I sort of wanted to stay and chat with the desk lady. It was hot muggy and about 14 hours after speed work plus it was in a new area. I love that when I’m not training but when I am working a program I thrive on the familiarity of running the same routes. It was a bit of a tough run and then I almost got hit by a car! It was a really, really close call. I haven’t had one that close since 2015. My really close calls have always been at intersections and this was no different. Usually a car will start to move as you enter the intersection and you almost connect with their passenger side. Those ones aren’t so terrifying. The ones that really scare you is when the car starts to move after you’ve crossed the windshield because just stopping isn’t an option. You have to jump out of the way or you’re getting it. That’s what happened today.

Just in case any non-runners are reading this that really gets a runner’s adrenaline going when this happens. We might yell, swear, pound the hood of your car or otherwise let you know just how unhappy we are. You have to understand that it’s pretty much the ultimate fight or flight moment and we’re not always totally in control of our response. But to be fair you did almost just hit us. This driver was a young kid, although everyone under 25 is starting to look that way to me now and he was really sorry. He yelled it at me twice as I was taking the lord’s name in vein and once more when I looked back. You could tell he was really shaken up too. For runners science says it’s best to jump out of the way even if you are hit as it causes less damage to you. In that moment times slows down and your natural instinct is to do just that. Rather than take a picture or gesture rudely when I looked back he was still saying sorry and I knew that this driver at least got it. 

This coming week is my last week of 3 runs for a couple of weeks and I have a 10k race coming up. Next week I’ll let you all know how this week’s training went and post in the comments if you’re doing you’re 1/2 or full or whatever training along with me! You can download my bare minimum 1/2 marathon training plan here!

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