The Treadmill Track Workout and the Case of the Bruised Bladder

by Carolyn Keene ….or really just Sue

When you have an almost 11-year-old, you have lots of Nancy Drew books laying around your house.

Week #3 of marathon training

Monday: 5 miles outside in 45:48 (9:15+ GP). Another hot one. And there’s nothing like having to make a quick grocery store stop on the way home with soaking wet shorts. And of course, that is the time when you run into everyone you know.

Wednesday: This was supposed to be my first track workout. Embarrassingly, I have never done a track workout. Ever. (Unless you count when we were made to run the track for conditioning for high school gymnastics, when I thought as if I may possibly die right then and there). In order to actually achieve an effective track workout this week, she’s having me run this one on the treadmill. The temps this week in Ohio are in the low 90s with all kinds of heat advisories. Not going to find me arguing with that!

On the schedule:
2M WU
5x800m @7-7:15 w/400m rest intervals
2.5M CD

Well, I won’t lie. This was definitely hard. Perhaps not as bad as I thought it would be though. I felt it in my breathing more than in my legs. My biggest worry? Face planting on the treadmill when running that fast. I will confess, I do occasionally often hang onto the treadmill with a hand here and there. Even though I am NOT supposed to be doing that, I did hold on with one finger every now and then. Totally psychological, I know.

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My cheat sheet for when to change speeds on the treadmill. Who can run that fast and think at the same time? Apparently not me. I gotta say, when the treadmill is set on 8.5, a half mile goes by pretty darn fast.

So I did my 800s at 7:04 pace. 8 miles total in 1:12:52

At the risk of TMI, but I’m just curious, so I’ve got to throw this out there–I had blood in my urine right after this run, which eventually tapered off by the end of the day; but also momentarily freaked me out. Kelly googled it for me and apparently it’s not that uncommon? I guess what can happen, according to one article I read, is if your bladder is empty, it can bounce around during a strenuous run and thus cause bruising and bleeding? Of course there were other potential causes, but this one, to me, seemed the most logical given the circumstances. They suggested going into a run with a not completely empty bladder. Well, who wants to do that? Anyone had this happen to them, or even heard of it?

Thursday: 4 miles outside in 36:42 (9:15+ GP)

Saturday: 4 mile treadmill recovery run in 40:04 (10:00+ GP). Saturday and Sunday’s runs got swapped out this week due to schedules.

Sunday: Long run. I knew going into this one I’d be pretty much solo. 17 miles is a long time to be solo. Kelly was not yet 100%, and Ryan had the lame excuse of having to operate on someone. Really, Ryan? That’s the best you’ve got for me? Just kidding, of course.

The great news? Kelly’s knee was feeling decent, which, by the way, was probably what she wanted most for today, her birthday! We ran a few miles together, then for the rest I was on my own.

And I was soooo not disappointed by yet another, exceptionally humid long run. You’d think I’d be used to it by now. Trying to be consistent with my fueling and hydrating on these early long runs, so I can figure out precisely what works best for me–my coach says I need to have this down to a science. So, every run is a learning experience. It wasn’t the most spectacular, but I pushed through and got it done. What else could I ask for?

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17 miles in 2:42:55 (9:30+ GP)

Next week: hill repeats, a tempo run, and the 20-miler. Should I cry now or later? Wait–I’m supposed to love running, right?

38 miles total for the week.

Marathon Training Week 1-Feeling It?

by Kelly

I planned carefully to make sure my Marine Corp Marathon training was going to get me to a marathon PR.

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I was feeling it…I had my marathon training schedule picked out. Runners world -Your Best Marathon Plan. Five days a week of running, with one day of hill/speed work, one long run and three other days of running.

A week before training started I headed to Dr. G. (My sports medicine doctor) for a shot of cortisone to help relieve my sore and stiff runners knee. He gave me the shot and then advised me
to take a week off running and that five days a week was too much running for my problematic right knee. I adjusted my training schedule to four days and still felt confident.

Monday morning I did a 5 1/2 treadmill run with some intervals thrown in and I felt great! Tuesday a rest day and Wednesday headed out for a hill run with Ryan. It is a 5 miles of rolling hills that I have run a lot in the past, but hadn’t attempted since my calf/knee injury last year. 2 1/2 miles in and I was feeling great! Started on a downhill and felt something behind my knee really hurt..it stopped me in my tracks. Tried to continue with run but knew there was no way I could finish, so I hobbled home. Diagnosis (by my personal trainer) pulled hamstring. Took two days off and tried to do my 9 miles long run on Saturday and it hurt right away. I made it to a mile and stopped running and walked back to my car.

So I have spent this week cross training on the elliptical, yoga, working out with my trainer, icing, doing a lot of rolling and feeling sorry for myself. I then realized that I can still do this .. I need to cross train hard and let my hamstring heal enough to have quality runs.

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It might not be the way I wanted marathon training to start but my marathon PR is going to happen. I believe that these obstacles will make me stronger.

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And I will. Has anyone else started out training for a race with an injury?

And the Heat Goes On

by Sue

Is it wrong that it’s barely July and I’m wishing for fall temperatures already?

Week #2 of marathon training

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My running schedule is all out of whack this week. When you’re running five days a week, going out of town–even for a couple of days–can make it a challenge to fit all those runs in.

Monday: Here we go again with the tempo run. On the schedule today:
2M WU
4M @8:00
2M CD

My tempo splits: 8:06, 8:08, 8:14, 8:13

Over pace again. NOT ideal for a numbers-obsessed individual like myself; but considering that it felt like I was breathing through soup out there, I will take it. I slowed my WU and CD miles a little bit this time, and it really made a difference.

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The Instagram filter so nicely removed the beet-red color of my face. And turned me into a mannequin. Or someone who is in need of a blood transfusion.

8 miles in 1:09:39

This humidity is doing NOTHING for my self-confidence.

Wednesday: Also known as Developing Mental Toughness Day. So, due to travel this weekend, my long run was scheduled for today. And I knew going in that it was going to have to be done on the treadmill. But really I’m ok with that. The treadmill and I are friends. I feel very comfortable on it. I just put on some Netflix and zoned. For a really, really long time.

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Yep, 15 treadmill miles in 2:23:05 (9:30+ GP). Not my personal treadmill distance record, but pretty darn close.

Thursday: 5 recovery treadmill miles in 50:03 (10:00+ GP)

Friday: 5 treadmill miles in 46:17 (9:15+ GP)

Sunday: 4 easy treadmill miles in 38:11

I made this this week–a delicious, clean-eating, protein-packed recipe suggested by Amanda:

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Clean Eating Cheesy Chicken Quinoa Vegetable Casserole

It was soooo good! Comfort food with none of the guilt. The picture doesn’t exactly do it justice. Or maybe I’m just a bad photographer. In the words of my 8-year-old….”it looks disgusting but it’s actually really good!”

The reason we traveled out of town this weekend was to celebrate my sister-in-law and brother-in-law’s 25th wedding anniversary.

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Congrats Liz & Dave!

Some things are just worth rearranging the ol’ running schedule for. I really do say that in jest. But it’s easy for me to get so caught up in “the schedule” sometimes that I don’t always slow down and fully take in things like this. Because at the end of the day–training plan or no training plan–family is what matters most.

I will be spending the greater part of next week running off the approximately 10,000 calories I consumed in wedding cake. It was so pretty, and I should’ve taken a photo, but I was just too busy stuffing it in my face.

37 miles total for the week.

….and in With the Fast

by Sue

Marine Corps Marathon training has officially begun, and week number one is in the books!

Or, put another way, am I really doing this again??

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New kicks to kick off the start of training!

The focus of my next seven weeks of training is speed work.

Yay! Finally!

I think.

Monday: 5 treadmill miles in 46:15 (9:15+ GP)

Wednesday: Tempo day. I gotta say, I was feeling a little nervous about this. I hadn’t run “fast” (for me) since I did a 5K Memorial Day weekend. And mind you, it was about 40 degrees that morning. I ran with gloves.

The purpose of incorporating tempo runs into your training (again referencing my favorite Runner’s World book), is to “….teach your body to run faster before fatiguing. How? They help you raise your lactate threshold pace, the speed you’re able to run at before lactic acid begins accumulating in your leg muscles more rapidly than they can recycle it into usable fuel. When this happens, your muscles begin to perform less efficiently. The higher you push your lactate threshold through appropriate training, the farther and faster you can run before tiring.”

My coach told me tempo should feel “comfortably hard”. Ummm….do those two words even go together? Anyway, the pace she set for me was slightly faster than my half marathon pace.

On the schedule:
2M warmup
4M @7:45
2M cool down

OK, seriously, how many more times can I use the heat and humidity excuse? Apparently another one, cause I’m going to use it again right here.

My splits for the tempo miles:
7:46
7:48
7:54
7:56

I couldn’t quite hold onto it those last two tempo miles–actually I wasn’t even close–which felt like one giant fail because I couldn’t hit my paces. I really think, no–I KNOW–I could’ve if it hadn’t been so ridiculously humid. I felt horrible, like I was in a fog the last four miles. And in hindsight, I ran the warmup and cool down miles way too fast. Lesson learned. Again.

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8 miles in 1:06:34

I came home 3 lbs. lighter than when I left in the morning. It was that kind of a run.

Thursday: 5 treadmill miles in 46:14 (9:15+ GP)

Saturday: Long run–a very humid but doable 13 miles in 2:02:07 (9:30+ GP) on the trail with Kelly and Ryan.

Sunday: 4 recovery treadmill miles in 40:04 (10:00+ GP)

My new during-the-week go-to meal:

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Crockpot Rotisserie Chicken from theleangreenbean.com. One whole chicken, 5 minutes to throw together seasonings and olive oil to make a paste, 5 hours to cook. Crazy simple and delicious. 4 out of 4 satisfied customers at my house.

And with that I leave you, so that I can go start obsessing over tomorrow morning’s tempo run.

35 miles total for the week.

Out With the Slow….

by Sue

So this past week concluded my month of “slowing-it-down”. It took a lot of adjusting to, but now that we’ve gotten to know each other, I have a feeling I’m going to miss it.

Last week was also a drop-back week for me–way less miles than I’ve been used to running lately and a long run that didn’t really seem long.

All fine and good til I realized I’m staring down a 20-miler exactly four weeks from now.

Yep. OK, then. Wow.

Perhaps I’m beginning to see the reasoning behind my slow-it-down month. And it’s making itself very clear to me….in the form of the aforementioned 20-miler four weeks from now.

Last week’s runs went like this (I’m finally up-to-date!):

Monday: Hill repeat day. A 1-mile warm-up followed by 8 hill repeats and a cool-down for the remainder, for a total of 8 miles. Goal pace 9:00-9:15. And so, the hills and I meet again. This time, Kelly found me a nice hill in her neighborhood. The HRs went well I thought. As fine as they could go for 85ish degrees and full sun. I was definitely working for them, which was fine, as that was the whole point of this workout.

A breakdown of the numbers:

Average pace: 9:30ish, if I was lucky. But good considering the conditions.

Water stops: 3

Periods during which I thought it quite probable that I was going to throw up: one, prolonged.

Times I wanted to quit: not quantifiable.

Times I thought of calling Kelly to see if there was a key to her house stashed somewhere so that I could go inside and lay down on her kitchen floor: 37

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8 hill repeats on an already hilly route was HARD. Probably the hardest run I’ve had in quite some time. Still trying to work through my hill hatred. Am I the only one who has hill issues?

8 miles in 1:16:20

Wednesday: 5 treadmill miles in 45:10 (9:00-9:15 GP)

Thursday: 5 treadmill miles in 45:13 (9:00-9:15 GP)

Saturday: Met Kelly on the trail. 8 miles in 1:14:21 (9:30 GP–ended up under). It’s a good day when 8 miles feels like nothing.

Sunday: 5 recovery miles in 50:04 (10:00 GP)

In keeping with the theme of the last couple of posts (i.e. running in insane heat and humidity), Kelly and I had read about the benefits of drinking a slushie-type beverage prior to running in these types of conditions in order to preemptively bring down body temperature. And then I just saw this in last month’s Runner’s World:

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OK, so I actually made them on a random afternoon and not prior to a hot run, but oh well.

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I thought they were pretty good. Definitely not super-sweet by any means, which probably explains why my children did not particularly care for them:) I’d make them again though, next time maybe with strawberries or raspberries.

And….there’s nothing like seeing THIS on your Facebook news feed for a little motivation:

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Marine Corps Marathon 2013, here we come!

31 miles total for the week.