myRUNweek (4) SD Half Training

1/25 to 1/31 Week 4:

Another awesome week of training behind me.  6 weeks to go until the San Diego Half Marathon.

Monday:  Backyard workout with a Rock

Say what?!…Yes I did a workout using a rock literally.  I was hanging out with my 2 year old in our backyard, doing a little bit of yard work when I started moving a few heavy rocks around to spruce up the landscape.  Right then, I recalled hearing a podcast about exercises you can do with a rock.  It was by Ben Greenfield of the Quick and Dirty tips Get Fit Guy podcast.  He was in the mountains of Colorado elk hunting when he thought of using rocks around his campsite to do a strength workout so he came up with 10 Exercises You can do with a Rock.  I know I wasn’t stuck in the woods and could have used the kettlebells or dumbbells I have sitting in my house but thought it would be more interesting to do a workout the non-conventional way.  Plus my daughter was intrigued and entertained at the same time.  She loves to mimic so she grabbed a much smaller rock and copied what I was doing.


Tuesday: San Diego Track Club workout – Ladders – 400m/800m/1000m/20minSteady/1000m/800m/400m

This was one tough, yet exhilarating workout.  I decided to run with the FAST group since I needed the extra mileage.  The marathon/half marathon training program is divided into 3 groups: A group are the fast runners, B group are the intermediate, mid-pack runners, and C group are the beginners.  Scheduled for the B and C group was a 20min threshold run followed by a 10min fartlek run, which meant if I ran with the B group I would run the most 4 miles.  I scheduled 7 miles total for the day, so I knew I had to join the A group if I wanted to get those miles in.

I was nervous as this was my first time running with them and didn’t want to be left in the dust.  I know I should always run my own pace without concern as to what the others around me are doing but there’s always a certain amount of anxiety no matter what.  Well, I managed to stay with the group but in the back of the pack.  And as to my pace, I ran much faster than I had intended, yet still felt pretty good by the end of the workout.

Here are my splits:  400m (1:45), 800m (3:22), 1000m (4:11), 20minthreshold (7:33/mi), 1000m (4:20), 800m (3:27), 400m (1:36).  My pacing strategy needs tweaking as I feel my splits are not very consistent.  I did a cooldown afterwards and ended up running 6 mi, a mile short than planned.  Not a big deal.  I did a few quick stretches and hurried home to eat dinner and tuck the kids in to bed.

Wednesday: 5 mi (10:00/mi) treadmill recovery + core cable exercises

Listening to a podcast while watching HGTV’s Love It or List It show made my easy run go quickly.  While I don’t mind running on a treadmill, I prefer an interval-type of run rather than shuffling along slowly.  Afterwards, I spent about 10min with rotations, wood chops and standing lifts using the Kinesis cable machine.

Thursday: Off

I usually run on Thursdays but moved it to Friday to avoid running 3 days in a row.  With a dental appointment and several errands, it worked out perfectly for me to take the day off.

Friday: 5 mi (9:48/mi) easy + Form Drills

My route covered miles 4 to 7 of the San Diego Half Marathon course from Harbor Island to Liberty Station in Point Loma.  However, I started in Point Loma and ran on the dirt trail rather than on the road.  It was another beautiful San Diego day, sunny blue skies and in the 60s – perfect running weather.

Downtown view from Harbor Island
Saturday: 12 mi (warmup 2mi – 9:27/mi, 10mi – 8:33/mi) with SDTC Rockin n’ Runnin group

Our Saturday training starts at 7am but I wanted to finish earlier so I arrived 20min early and warmed up with a 2 mile run.  Weather was cold, dreary and slightly drizzled towards the end of the run.  That really didn’t matter as I was in the company of 3 strong female runners – 2 who had babies only 8 months ago and 1 who has 2 kids a year older than mine – and we all stuck together until the end of the run.  Again, our pace was a tad quicker than planned but we were engaged in conversation and didn’t need to catch our breath.  Coach did say to run at a conversational pace!

The after-run seminar was presented by Rehab United, a Physical Therapy and Sports Performance center with Strength Training for Runners as the topic.  What great timing as we are kicking off our StrongBody Streak on Monday!  Main take-away for those who are time-constrained and don’t think you can squeeze in a strength training session.  A short 20min workout using your own bodyweight twice a week can make a big difference in preventing injury and building strength by choosing the right type of exercises for the sport, in our case Running, performing the exercises in different planes of motion (sagittal, frontal, transverse) and doing as many reps as possible (AMRAP).  Let’s take a lunge, for example.  The most common exercise for a lunge is a front lunge which is in the sagittal plane.  We can start with doing a front lunge for AMRAP, then proceed with clockwork lunges, performing lunges in various dimensions.  They provided many more examples and was definitely an informative seminar.

Sunday:  Power Yoga DVD for 40min

“Deep Breath and Calm Minds”  I hear the yoga teacher says as I work through one of the yoga poses.  That’s all I wanted from my practice today was to take deep breaths.  Unfortunately, I found it difficult at times especially when my head was upside down since I’m currently battling a stuffed nose.  Still a great workout.

Weekly Total: Mileage 28/Strength 1:20

Any strength-training advice for runners?  If you live in the same area as the race you’re training for, how often do you run the race course?