I honestly cannot believe how fast July is going. It's already halfway over? I'm one month into marathon training?? I have to take the bar exam in just over two weeks??? AHH!
The weekend was decidedly lowkey since bar review is officially intense. Sourabh and I headed to NJ for the weekend again. We planned on doing a hike on the beach Saturday morning before I'd spend the rest of the day studying, but unfortunately it was a grey, rainy day. Bummer!
Instead, we walked Mason near Rutgers University and Sourabh showed me the area he lived in when he first came to the U.S. (he was born in India and lived there till he was four). Then we went to brunch at The Blue Rooster Bakery & Cafe, a cute little cafe in Cranbury, NJ, which is a quaint historical town a short ride from Sourabh's home.
The rest of the weekend was spent studying, long running, and studying. Oh, and eating, obviously.
I've discovered my new favorite pre-long run meal: chirashi. I had it Saturday night and was very happy with the fueling. It's basically a bowl of sushi rice with sashimi on top, so you're getting your carbs from the rice and your protein from the fish. It worked well with my stomach and kept me well-fueled for Sunday's long run!
Speaking of fueling, I had an exciting discovery. Vega sent me some of their Vega Sport products to try out, and while I am going to wait to do a proper review, I had to immediately tell you all about the Vega Gels. I cannot get down gels normally, especially mid-run, but these don't taste like normal gels -- in fact they taste like real food -- and I felt great using the gel. I'm so relieved to have found a gel that seems to work with me for marathon training!
Chicago Marathon Training Recap - Week 3
Here were the workouts Coach Jess planned for me last week:
√ 1 recovery run (30 mins.)
- 1 yoga class
√ 2 strength workouts (Refine or Uplift Studios strength class and workout with trainer)
√ 1 easy run (55 mins.)
√ 1 hill repeats workout (AHH! So scared about this one)
√ 1 long run (14 miles - will be my longest run ever!)
Since I wasn't in NYC to take a yoga class, I did videos instead and only did 20 minutes, so I can't quite count this workout as "checked off." My legs also felt tighter, so clearly that minimalist approach to yoga did not cut it!
Monday: 30 min. recovery run and 20 min. easy, stretchy yoga.
Slow and easy recovery miles. Felt incredibly hot, despite lower temps than Sunday, because there was a lot of direct sunlight in the local NJ park. I chatted with my mom on the phone while I ran/jogged, which made the 30 minutes pass a lot faster.
Did a Tara Stiles YouTube yoga flow that focused on stretching, then did some more poses that focused on hip-opening and loosening up the calves, quads, and hamstrings.
Tuesday: 55 min. Uplift Strength class taught by Shannon.
Terrific strength class that left my legs feeling like jelly! I can always count on Uplift to make me sore and my hamstrings and outer thighs were definitely feeling this class for a couple days afterwards.
Wednesday: 50 minute easy run (50:45) with Ashley.
Hot and sweaty easy-paced good bye run with Ashley. Ran along the gorgeous High Line, the West Side Highway, and through Chelsea. Legs felt pretty tired after Tuesday night's Uplift class, which is why I stopped at 50 minutes instead of 55 minutes as assigned. And because we were by smoothies.
Thursday: Cat Hill repeats (5.63 miles) with Heather.
My first hill repeats workout - ever! Ran with Heather, which was great because I was really scared of hill repeats and she made me feel much more confident.
Plan was 1.5 mi w/u, 5x up Cat Hill and down slowly for recovery, then 1 mi c/d. Ended up being further from my apartment to Cat Hill than I expected. Total mileage includes recoveries in between. Each repeat was .24-.26 miles, same for recovery.
w/u - (1) 9:40, (2) 9:20
c/d - (1) 9:57, (.39) ~11:00
The hardest part was knowing how hard to push since I'd never done hill repeats before. I definitely could have pushed harder I think, and realized that after the third one, so I went all out for the fifth and could barely breathe by the end of that repeat. But it felt great to see a 7 on my watch!
Friday: 60 min. strength training session with trainer, Amanda.
Tough workout Friday morning after Thursday night's hill repeats! I also stayed up a bit late studying and woke up feeling totally out of it. Of course, Amanda woke me right up! My building's gym now has a Bosu ball and she made full use of it in the workout.
5 minute cycling warm-up.
Lower Body Circuit (2x): Bosu ball burpees, one-legged squats + knee thrust on Bosu ball, dead lifts on Bosu ball, sideways jumping lunges, squat jumps onto and off Bosu ball.
Core Circuit (2x): twist crunches, crunches on Bosu ball, reverse crunches and legs-in-and-out using TRX.
Then stretching, of course! We focused on my hamstrings, hips, and calves since they're seeing so much action these days.
A much-needed rest day. Walking Mason was all the activity that happened and it was kind of glorious.
Sunday: 14 mile long run (2:32:11) with Ruthie and Sean.
New distance PR! This was the furthest I've ever run. I was happy to run with Ruthie and her husband, Sean, again. We hit up the same lovely trail from last week's long run, the Delaware & Raritan Canal Path in the Princeton, NJ area. It was nice and shady for most of it, and despite the mud and puddles from a rainstorm Saturday night, the path was a lot of fun (again). Alternated between 10:25-10:55, in large part based on how clear or dirty the path was, with two 11:20's thrown in on miles 11 and 12 when we were feeling beat and the path was extra muddy and narrow.
Fueled with a Picky Bar and a small smear of peanut butter on top for breakfast, 3 Sport Beans at beginning, Vega endurance gel at mile 6.5, and one Honey Stinger chew at mile 10. Had a glass of nuun before the run and after. I forgot to put it in my bottle, but I preferred the taste of warm regular water to warm nuun, so I think this worked out ok.
Splits - (1) 10:52, (2) 10:26, (3) 10:46, (4) 10:46, (5) 10:58, (6) 10:40, (7) 10:45, (8) 10:53, (9) 10:55, (10) 10:50, (11) 11:31, (12) 11:41, (13) 10:48, (14) 10:20. <--- fastest mile because I was ready to FINISH.
This Week's Training Schedule:
• 3 yoga classes
• Easy run (4 miles)
• 3 strength workouts (30 min. each)
• Long run (15 miles)
• Local WA 5K race!!
Originally, this week was going to be my cutback week to give my legs a break. However, I emailed Coach Jess, telling her I was concerned that running 16 miles two days before the bar exam might leave me exhausted and jeopardize my performance on the test. I asked if we could switch the cutback week and the pre-bar week, so now I'm upping my long run distance again this week. However, the mileage is being cut a bit, and there's going to be a lot of yoga since I'll be home to take my dad's yoga classes, so fingers crossed it works out well!