Sunday, February 2, 2014

Boston 2014 Training: Week 7 Recap

This training cycle feels so different from the last two cycles, so much so, that I don't actually feel like I'm training for something.

I absolutely love summer running. Give me 90 degree running weather any day over 30 degree weather. I'm serious. Training in winter is absolute torture for me. I have only done 1 track workout, and haven't gotten in over 40 miles for a week yet.

The worst part about this training cycle is that my heart isn't in it. It hasn't been from the start. There are days when I just can't talk myself into getting out the door. Maybe I need a training buddy. When I lived in Vermont I almost always had a weekly run with a friend or two during the winter. I couldn't stay home. I had to go run. We had made plans and those plans got me out the door on Sunday mornings or cold nights. And  I always had fun on them. Running with a friend was the only way I seem to tolerate winter.

On Thursday of this week I had a bad run. Mentally, it was the worse since college. I kept thinking of Jerry's (from Ben and Jerry) quote, "If it's not fun, why do it?" I was not having fun. In fact, it felt as bad as the day I quit track my sophomore year. I vowed not to go out the door unless I knew there was a chance I would enjoy the run. It was in the 20's, the wind was blowing, and I hated every moment.

The next night I went out. And it was 10 degrees warmer. And I enjoyed it slightly more. And right now it is 56 degrees. Today was so much better than Thursday all around. I love running, but only when I want to do it.

Total Weekly Mileage: 38 miles

Monday: 40 minutes circuit videos and 1.2 mile run
The morning started off gorgeous (goodbye gloves and mittens) but it was drastically colder when I got home. I stayed inside and did two videos: a dance video for a cardio warm up and then a 30 minute circuit training video. After that, I made my wobbly body go for a brief run.

Tuesday: Day off. It was 17 degrees, not including the windchill. You know the drill.

Wednesday: Day off. Too busy at work and didn't get home until 7:30.

Thursday: 7 miles at 7:18 pace
Started out fine. Even raced with a guy who left at the same time as me (I lost him at some point), but when I got to the 3 mile mark my mind gave up. I was done with running.

Friday: 7 miles at 7:43 pace
Warmer weather (30's) made it bearable. Took it slower and it felt like torture. I know I need to run slower on easy days. But get this - I actually fell! I tripped over my own feet because I was too slow in the beginning. GAH! I got super excited at one point because I could actually smell MUD! I didn't realize that I actually haven't smelled anything on a run in months thanks to the coldness. Bring on spring and the blossoms!

Saturday: 8 miles at 7:33 pace
Sun! Warmth! A happier run this time.

Sunday: 14.3 miles at 8:12 pace
Ran the same route I tried out a couple weekends back and was constantly reminded of all of the past springs when I was training for track or for Boston. Snow was on the ground but it was warm enough (56) to go in a t-shirt. I enjoyed this run much more than Thursday's, especially when I got to pockets of warm air.

Some random thoughts from today's run:
  • I discovered that I really don't like seeing runners with ipods. I don't know why it bothers me so much. Something about them being tangled in the wires and having to carry something around with them. You might be able to guess that I don't own a portable music-playing device. Running is about freedom for me. 
  • People who have more spring in their step than movement forward make me tired to watch.
  • I actually get a pain in my stomach when I see someone running to catch a city bus. I have to turn away when I know that they aren't going to get it. I hate to see the look of failure on their face, especially when they put in so much effort to run after it. 
  • Every time I run by a squirrel I am afraid it is going to run in the road and get hit by a car - all because of me. Thankfully, it hasn't happened yet (*knockonwood*).
  • Every day I count how many Punch Buggies I see while running. I got up to 4 today, which is pretty low considering I ran 14 miles. Normally I come back and try to punch Tom but he argues that he has to be with me at the time in order for them to count.


  1. Hey lady, my heart hasn't been in running at all this winter either. My dumb self was like, "Hey, sign up for another half! That will be motivation!" The half is in a month and a half, and here I am struggling to finish a 6 mile loop. CRAP. It's just been SO cold. I wasn't expecting it to be in the low teens for most of January.

    I can't believe you run 14 miles without listening to music!! I have to have it to fight boredom and those evil mental bugs. I got a shuffle, which is so tiny I barely notice I'm carrying it, and I don't feel the need to fuss around with the screen or anything. The one thing I regretted from my first half was not bringing any music to listen to--the sound of my own breath and feet hitting the ground became maddening after 2 hours.

    1. Hi Mongie! This winter has been tough. Hopefully it'll start to warm up so you can get some good runs in. You still have some time to build up your long run before the race. Is the half in Boston?

      I don't blame you for listening to music. I know a lot of people do, but I guess I get too lazy and don't like to think about it. Most of the time I have a song going in my head so that's enough to keep me entertained (right now its Katy Perry or Will Farrel's Tight Pants song!)

  2. This winter has been incredibly trying on the motivation scale for training, you are not alone on that part. Hopefully we can get a break soon and start have more consistency with weather (and I don't mean more consistently frozen!)

    I definitely agree on the people who bounce up more than forward while running... makes me tired just thinking about it!