Marathon Training Week 1

Hey guys and happy Monday!

As many of you know, last week was my first week of marathon training and because I am completely obsessed with running right now, I thought I’d share my week in training with all of you!

Monday- Rest day after the Naperville Triathlon. As eager as I was to start my running plan, rest is key to preventing injuries.

Tuesday- I had a lactate threshold 8 miler on the schedule with 4 miles at 15k-half marathon pace. I started with a 2 mile warm-up and then increased my speed to complete the tempo portion of the run. My goal was to run between a 7:20 and 7:40 min/mile and I ran a 7:34, 7:19, 7:20, and 7:24. I finished with a 2 mile cool down. This was my first tempo run ever and it was NOT easy. I had a difficult time pacing myself during the tempo miles and it was definitely more difficult to run fast without the adrenaline of being in a race. However, the most difficult part of the tempo run was the cool down. After running 4 fast miles (and 6 miles in total) my legs wanted to shut down. It took a lot of willpower to propel myself forward during the first mile. I felt better during the second mile. In total, the 8 miles took me 1:01.

Wednesday- On Wednesday I woke up with stiff legs, nothing super sore but I definitely had some built up lactic acid. My training plan called for a 4 mile recovery run and it turned out to be just what I needed. Per the Advanced Marathoning training plan, a recovery run should be run so that you feel like you’re saving up energy, this translated to an 8:30 min/mile on Wednesday. However, according to the McMillan Running Calculator, I should be running between an 8:57 and a 9:39 min/mile. This seems really slow for a goal time of 7:40 min/miles but maybe I need to be better about slowing down? Any one have experience with this? Either way, my legs felt muuuch better after the recovery run. I felt re-energized and most of the stiffness had been worked out of my legs. The recovery run took me about 34 minutes.

Thursday- Thursday called for a 9 mile general aerobic run at 15-25% slower than marathon pace. For me this is between a 7:52 and 8:52 min/mile. The weather was absolutely gorgeous later in the week and I didn’t mind taking my time and enjoying the run. I pushed myself a little bit but mostly just ran by feel, my goal was to get in the mileage not run an incredibly fast 9 miles. This mindset was really wonderful and I never cramped up or felt tight during the run, I wasn’t even very sore later on! I ended up averaging an 8:06 min/mile and the run took me 1:13 to complete.

Friday- I had the option of either taking a day off or cross training on Friday so I decided to hit the pool and swim some laps. It was a rainy morning and the gym was pretty empty so I got a lane right away and had enough time to swim 2,000 meters. I felt good in the water but I could tell it had been awhile since I’ve swam laps. Isn’t it crazy how the pool can feel differently after only a week? I enjoyed my swim but honestly, I wish that my schedule had called for running. Later on in the training plan, I’ve given myself the option of cross-training/running on those days- just in case I want to fit in some extra mileage.

Saturday- I was so happy to sleep in and see 60 degree temps… maybe fall is coming after all? With only a recovery 4 miler on my schedule, I really wanted to make sure that I enjoyed my run. I took it nice and slow and enjoyed not sweating buckets and being able to breathe. It was also great to see all of the people out on the lake shore path, it was a perfect morning for running! My legs again felt a little stiff but the recovery run helped wonders. I averaged an 8:27 min/mile and finished in under 34 minutes.

Sunday- After doing a lot of walking on Saturday in sandals (when will I learn?) I wasn’t expecting too much from my 12 miler on Sunday. The plan called for the run to be done at 10-20% slower than marathon pace so I aimed for somewhere in the 7:50-8:20 range. My feet and legs had been hurting on Saturday so I took the run easy and didn’t push too hard. Fortunately, nothing bugged me during my run! The weather was nice again, not too hot but not chilly and it was overcast. I averaged an 8:09 min/mile and the 12 miles took me 1:38.

Total mileage = 37

Overall I’m happy with my first week. I’m not incredibly sore or feeling any unusual pain which is really good and I loved the variety of my runs. I do want my times to be a little faster but I think that will come as my body adjusts to running more mileage. It has been over 6 months since I’ve been in marathon shape!

I’m off to start the work week. Have a good one!

What was your favorite workout last week?