After last week’s missed workout, I was ready to get back to work on Monday. I had a good workout on the treadmill with still icy roads to avoid to start the week and solid workouts on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Friday things wrapped up with tough long run.
After an easy run Thursday my legs were feeling beat up. I hadn’t slept well for three days and was struggling with the choice to do a workout I knew would be hard on Friday or Saturday. Saturday’s forecast was chilly, rainy and windy while Friday’s was warmer, sunnier and less windy. The downside for Friday was I’d half to run after biking to and from work and coaching for several hours. I really did not want to get wet. My legs felt heavy and the day off would have been nice. I chose pain over wet and did my tough long run Friday mid-morning through the afternoon.
The tough long run was not just going out for a finish fast or middle marathon pace miles event. It was meant to be a threshold workout and a challenge. Starting with a 2 mile warm-up, it was on to 3×2 mile (rest 3 min) repeats at marathon pace minus 15 seconds, then 8 miles easy, 2 miles back at MP-15 and a 2 mile cool down. I almost bailed during the warm up but I started to feel better 2k in. It was one ugly run.
I settled into a groove during the 2 mile repeats that was 10 seconds too fast. Slowing down for the easy 8 was also challenging. I gave the final 2 mile push all I had to finish on a up note and cut my cool down short. The weather was much warmer than predicted without the expected cloud cover. I battled dehydration, hard trouble keeping my heart rate down and dealt with foot cramps toward the end. Not the run I wanted it to be, it was still a decent workout that helped me work on my mental game. They can’t all be great or we’d never get better. I’m looking forward to next week’s 18 mile progression as another tough long run to improve on this week’s mess.
I’m also excited to try out my brand new SPI Belt this weekend! I participated in the winter edition of RunChat‘s RunChat Hunt for the second year and was lucky enough to win. The challenge works like this: the RunChat community picks ten items for you to photograph while on the run. Each time you snap one, share it on social media with #runchathunt for an entry to win a variety of prizes from awesome sponsors like SPI Belt.
I typically don’t run with anything other than a house key and, if needed, gels. Yes, I like to have my peace and quiet but if I could easily carry something else with me I might. Stay tuned for a review in the next few weeks!
How do you handle a tough long run? Cope with a no so good workout?