training for my first half marathon: week 11 & 12

I hope y’all had a lovely Thanksgiving Day and weekend! We soaked up family time, which was super refreshing. I had good intentions to post this on Friday but there was clearly too much fun to be had. This is my last week of training before the race on Sunday, so I will share all that stuff this time, next week!

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As promised (because I just know you were all waiting on pins and needles), below is how the last two weeks looked in training land. I decided to go ahead and keep a similar format as the first chart, just to make it easier for me to track the main things I want to see.

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And the week that just ended…

 photo week12_zps53165d60.jpg

How I Felt
S-l-o-w. I’m not sure if mentally, I started out week 11 with thinking I was slow due to my long run but it shows in my runs the rest of the week. Granted, my three weekday runs were pushing the stroller but regardless, I had already set myself up for discouragement after Sunday’s run. My feet hurt a bit more than usual this week, but I’m just chalking that up to shoes that need to be replaced soon and not necessarily the mileage. Week 12 was better, in terms of not feeling as slow but I did get out of sorts when I had to shift around my runs a bit although it was definitely worth it, since spending time with family is much more important. It all worked out just fine.

What I Learned
Don’t be so critical of my speeds, especially at this point in training. I’ve got just under 1 week(!) before race day and while I am always trying to improve my speed with each run, at this point I just need to know that finishing without walking will be an accomplishment in itself! Also, I learned that just because I have one “slow” run or even “slow” mile, I shouldn’t let that affect my next run and the ones after that.

Goals for this Week
This is my taper week, meaning that after last night’s long run, I’m done with double digits until race day. At this point, my goals are to run my remaining workouts (I have 3 runs left) anywhere from 30 to 90 seconds faster than the fastest times I’ve had during these past 12 weeks. It may seem like a lofty goal and maybe a bit extreme, seeing as I am tapering but I know if I don’t push myself hard all the way until the very end, that come race day I may be tempted to “take it easy” because I’ve already completed my training. Does that make sense? Finally, mentally I would like to not let external circumstances (i.e. it’s windy and 45 degrees) affect my runs or decisions to go running outside versus on the treadmill. Life does happen (like it did yesterday) and sometimes the treadmill is my only option — that’s fine, just not preferable since race day conditions are simply not like running on the treadmill (hello, hills and colder temps) and spoiler alert, the weather forecast is already looking like it’ll be in the 30’s for race day. Someone hold me.

That’s all for now on the training front. It’s crazy to think that this time next week, I will be able to say that I RAN 13.1 MILES and lived to tell the tale.

 photo photo10_zps0f0b54a8.jpg
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