Category: Fitness

Friday Fitness: Intervals, Tempo and Long Runs

I’ve been following a very different training plan for my spring half marathons this year vs. last year.  Last year I followed Hal Higdon’s plan, which was just based on distances.  It didn’t matter what pace you ran, just that you made it to those distances.  I followed it for both my spring half marathon and summer race.  I was stronger and seeing faster training runs during the summer training while still following the same distance plan.  But that was pretty much because I jumped right back into training as soon as I finished the first race.

This year I decided to try a new approach.  I am hoping to PR in Indy, so I needed a little more guidance on how to get there.  I am not a fly by the seat of my pants type of girl. I need a plan.  So I picked up Run Less, Run Faster to see what it had to say.  I really liked the idea of this plan because it has a 3 day a week running schedule with cross training in between, which is what I typically like to do anyway.  And it gives me target paces for all 3 runs.  And I like details, so this makes me super happy.

Though it also meant stepping out of my comfort zone.  But that is something I should be doing anyway.  I’m never going to get faster if I stay in my comfort zone, right?  Interval runs and tempo runs are new for me, but despite my complaints (particularly on interval day) I’m liking what I’m seeing!

Saturday – 10 miles (9:37 min/mile) I had to run alone on Saturday morning because I needed to be done early.  So I set out through the neighborhood to the bike path.  It makes the most sense logistically when I need to log lots of miles to head out to the bike path, but it is hilly.  Even with the hills, though I crushed my goal pace.  If I can maintain that pace for the 3.1 more miles I’ll have myself a shiny new half marathon PR. 

Saturday Long RunSunday – rest

Monday – Group Power.  I’m really enjoying this class.  I upped my weight factor this week and I really felt it both during class and the next day.  Especially in my arms.  I thought my biceps were strong……….

Group PowerTuesday – the dreaded interval day.  The plan said 6 x 800m intervals (4:05) with a 90 second recovery.  I was stroller pushing, so I was a little slower than my target intervals, but I kept all of them under 4:15, so I was pretty happy with that.  And I walked so slow during the recovery for 3.5 total miles.  I also did some plyo when I got home, which was tough on tired legs.

interval run

Wednesday – I dragged my tired legs to the Y for CSI (cardio, strength and intervals) and was tortured with lunges, squats, burpees, squat jumps and all those other things that my tired legs didn’t want to do.  I could barely walk after the 1 hour class.  But that didn’t stop me from going to the Pub Run that night.  I ran 3.65 miles and rewarded myself with a delicious pulled pork sandwich from a food truck and house made cream soda and the brewery.  And had great conversation with friends while enjoying the toasty fire.

Pub Run crewThursday was tempo day.  I had 7 on the schedule (1 easy, 5 at 9:13, 1 easy).  My tired legs weren’t happy and neither was my stroller running buddy (after 5.5 miles she was over it!).  It was snowing and windy but we managed 6.5 miles (10:01, 9:37, 9:10, 9:33, 9:27, 9:50, 9:47).  I only hit the target pace for 1 mile, but I was pretty close for 4 out of 5 and covered it snow, so I patted myself on the back and followed it up with 10 minutes of ab work.

snowy runThis morning we headed out to the Y and I hopped on the elliptical for 30 minutes and then did my ActivTrax exercises.  It was a very tricep focused workout and I’m sure I’ll have a hard time lifting my arms later. 

Overall I’m really happy with the week as far as running and cross/strength training go. Spring half marathons are sneaking up on me, but I’ll be ready for them!!!


Do you have a favorite training plan?

Friday Fitness: Wacky Weather Week

I was really hoping to get some non-fitness posts up this week, but I was really busy with work.  I’m having a hard time finding time for things other than family, exercise and work.  It’s taking me 3 weeks to sew a dress for myself!  I used to be able to whip one up in a day!  I used to be spoiled!

Saturday – 10.5 miles (9:57 min/mile)  We did our usual group run and there were lots of different distances to choose from.  I had to play catch up because my GPS wasn’t working when we started, so I started off way too fast, which left me dragging a bit at the end.  At least it was a gorgeous day!  I was overdressed with long sleeves on!

Saturday run

Sunday – We had a kids fun run!  It was supposed to take place last week, but the path was ice covered, so we postponed it.  The kids had a beautiful day as well.  They were so cute running!  Cupcake ran 1 mile while I pushed Pumpkin in the stroller.  She got out and ran the last .25 miles.  And by run I mean walked.

Kids fun run

Monday – Group Power at the Y

Group Power

Tuesday – 3.25 miles of intervals with my girl Susan.  She wanted to run in the afternoon and when the weather was 32 in the morning with a forecast of 50 for the afternoon I decided to join her.  Little did she know I was going to torture her!  The plan was .75 miles at 8:20 min/mile with a 2 minute recovery x 2, then .5 miles at 8:12 min/mile with a 2 minute recovery x 2, but we actually ran a little faster!

Interval run

Wednesday – Pumpkin didn’t want to go to the Y (she was too excited about her new cans of PlayDoh) so we stayed home and I did a dance cardio DVD and found a Total Body Burn video on YouTube. 

Thursday – I joined my good friend Kara for a 3.5 mile run for her 35th birthday.  I had 7 on the schedule and planned to do a second loop until I ran the first loop, pushing the stroller in the wind and snow (remember how I ran in short sleeves earlier in the week?).  But later in the day Cupcake asked to go to the Y, so I got another 3 miles done on the treadmill (9:30, 8:30, 8:00 splits) and ran through some strength training and abs.

Kara's birthday run

I’m taking today off because of yesterday’s double and I want to keep my legs fresh for tomorrow’s long run.  And Cupcake has a full day of school, so Pumpkin and I are going to go have some fun without having to rush back home.  IKEA here we come!!! Someone needs some accessories for her big girl room!!

Have a great weekend!!!!

Friday Fitness

We’re getting used a new normal around here without Oscar.  Sticking to my usual workout schedule helped.  Though I still expect him to come running when we get home from the gym.  It’s very strange not having him around.  I know it’ll take some time to get used to this new normal. 

Saturday we had our Moms Run This Town Winter Virtual race.  We had big plans for signs and distances, but Mother Nature was not kind to us.  The path was snowy and slick and the temperature wasn’t even in the double digits with a negative windchill.  I decided to stick to 10K instead of a half marathon because, well, I couldn’t feel my thighs.  I took it slow and ran the whole thing with a friend.  I enjoyed the company.

MRTT Winter VirtualSunday was a rest day.

Monday I hit the YMCA and did 20 minutes on the elliptical and ran through some weights.  Hubby was home for President’s Day, so I was able to go early, which was nice because it wasn’t very busy and I didn’t have to wait for any machines or weights.

On Tuesdays I run.  So I put Pumpkin in the stroller and we hit the neighborhood.  It was an interval day and I’m pretty happy with my performance considering I was pushing a stroller.  3 miles (9:19 min/mile) 

Tuesday runWednesday I tried a new class with some friends.  It’s called CSI (cardio, strength, intervals).  It was a great class!  We did some tabata (starting out with burpees!), lots of plank variations and some high rep weights.  It was an hour well spent!

On Thursday I hit the pavement again for a 6 mile tempo run.  The target was 9:28 min/mile and I came in at 9:26 min/mile for 6.5 miles.  Again, I was super happy with that especially since I was a stroller pushing.  Thankfully the weather was great.  Almost 30 degrees, sunny and no wind!!!

Thursday tempo runToday we were off to the Y again.  I did a 20 minute warmup on the bike before going through my weight routine.  Today was a back focused workout.  And because I had a little more time before I needed to be at the running store for their clearance sale I ran a quick-ish mile on the treadmill (9:06 min/mile).  Pumpkin and I were twinsies with our gym hair.

Gym hairI’m looking at a double digit run in the morning and it looks like the weather is going to be much nicer than last Saturday!  And then it’s a birthday weekend!!!  We’ll be celebrating hubby’s birthday and spending time with family.

Do you have big weekend plans?

Friday Fitness: A Weird Week

My schedule was way off this week.   There were two big reasons.  Weather and Oscar.  Make that three.  Sickness.

Saturday I really wanted to stay in bed.  It was so warm and cozy.  And I had the whole bed to myself because hubby had fallen asleep watching a movie.  But I dragged myself out of bed for the group long run.  I had 10 easy miles on the schedule.  I figured I’d run at about a 10:30 pace, which aligned with what two of the other gals wanted to do.  The whole group set out together, but as people hit their distances they turned back and then there were just 3.  (Actually there were 5 but the other two were way ahead of us)  We ended up running 11 miles (10:05 min/mile) because two of us ran a little faster than we thought and we kept going back to pick up our third runner.Saturday group run

I usually rest on Sunday, but it was such a gorgeous day!  (50 degrees and sunny)  A local running group was having a race in the afternoon.  Hubby and Cupcake had plans to go to the bookstore, so Pumpkin and I decided to join some friends for the race.  It was the Frostbite 5, but most people were wearing short sleeves!  I had to do lots of weaving because I started in the back with the stroller and I got held up a bit behind people.  Pumpkin slept in the stroller the whole time.  Well, until I hit a speedbump running an 8:00 min/mile pace right before the finish line! 5.12 miles in 46:42 (9:07 min/mile).

Frostbite 5Monday was a sort of rest day.  I did a quick cardio dance workout just to rack up some steps on my Fitbit.

Tuesday didn’t go at all like I expected.  Since hubby stayed home from work I was able to sneak out for a bit and head to the Y.  I did a 20 minute warmup on the elliptical and then ran through my strength training program. 

Wednesday was back to school for Cupcake, so Pumpkin and I went to the Y and I did my speedwork run (which I would normally do on Tuesdays).  Oh, and I normally wouldn’t run on the treadmill, but it was snowing again.  And I really didn’t feel like doing a stroller interval run in the snow!  I did 5 x 1000m (8:13 min/mile) with 400m RI (9:30 min/mile) all while watching HGTV.  I almost lost it, though, when a commercial with a dachshund came on.

treadmill runYesterday I wasn’t able to head to the Y in the morning.  We had window guys coming.  And then I couldn’t go when Cupcake came home from school because she came home sick.  Thankfully hubby came home just after 4:00 and I was able to enjoy some sunshine!  3.2 miles (8:52 min/mile)

SunshineI’m taking today as a rest day.  Cupcake doesn’t have school today and she’s still a bit under the weather so I don’t want to put her in child watch at the Y.  And tomorrow I have a race.  It’s the MRTT winter virtual.  I’m either running 10K or 13.1 but I figured I’d wait to see how I feel tomorrow (it’s supposed to be super cold) and see what the rest of the group is doing. 

I kind of slacked on the strength training this week, but hopefully next week things will be a little more normal and I can get back into my routine.


Have a great weekend, everyone!!!

Friday Fitness: Back in Training

I decided this week that maybe I should look at a calendar and figure out a training plan for my spring half marathons.  Turns out I should have started already!  Whoops!  The good news is I’ve kept up the mileage on the weekends so I’m not behind.  But I started reading Run Less, Run Faster and I wanted to try the training plan in it to reach my new PR goal.  So I had to get to work.

On Saturday we had our group run.  Luckily we didn’t get the snow that was predicted, but the snow from earlier in the week hadn’t been cleared or melted.  We had a snow run.  It was a first for some of the girls!  I didn’t really have a running plan, but my girl Kara was looking to make it her longest run ever so I stuck with her for 7 miles.  And she knocked it out of the park!!(10:45 min/mile)

Snow run!

And on Sunday I rest.  And I was super lazy.  My Fitbit step count was pathetic!

Monday I woke up before kiddos and did a HIIT workout and a weight workout.  And I figured out my half marathon training schedule.

And on Tuesdays I run.  I really should have run on Monday because the weather was nicer, but I like to stick to my schedule.  The plan was an interval run.  A 3x1000m interval!  That’s a heck of a way to start!  (I’m already 2 weeks behind)  I was supposed to do 1 warm up mile, followed by 3 9:28min/mile intervals with 60 second recovery.  I was running with the stroller, so I didn’t quite make the mark, but I got pretty darn close!  1 (9:55 min/mile) 2 (8:38 min/mile) 3 (8:34 min/mile) 4 (8:50 min/mile)

Interval runI also chased Cupcake around the skating rink for almost 2 hours that night which was a pretty good cardio workout!

Wednesday I did 25 minutes of HIIT (so many burpees!!!).  And I got 15 minutes on the step machine.

Thursday was my first tempo run.  Again, I was stroller running.  Again is was so windy!  I ran 6 miles on the hilly bike path (9:48 min/mile).  My target pace was 9:36.  Not too bad!!  Especially when I had to push the stroller up a pretty decent hill!

Tempo runI turned off my alarm clock this morning after being up with the toddler 3 times last night.  But after I sent Cupcake off to school I hit the step machine for 30 minutes and I’m off to do some push ups and crunches before I hit the shower. Nothing too strenuous since tomorrow is long run day!!  And it’s supposed to be a nice day!

I hope you had a great week!!!  I’ll see you next week!