I was really looking forward to this week because of Daylight Savings Time on Sunday. One extra hour of daylight means I will be able to do more running outside now. Plus, the temperatures have risen pretty suddenly and it feels like spring has sprung in Chicago.
My training plan this week had me running 34 miles (10% more than last week) with the usual tempo workout Monday, speed workout Wednesday and long run on Saturday.
Monday, Mar. 7
I ran a 9-mile tempo run on the treadmill for my workout today. I have been gradually increasing the length of my tempo run each of the last 4 weeks, and will continue to do so throughout my training. I ran the first 3 miles at 8.6 mph, the second 3 miles at 8.7 mph and final 3 miles at 8.8 mph. I felt good at the end and was happy with how the workout went. As much smack as I talk about running on the treadmill, I do appreciate it for the ability to precisely gauge how fast I’m running.
Tuesday, Mar. 8
I ran a 3-mile recovery run on the treadmill after lifting weights. My right knee randomly felt weird, which had me a little concerned.
Wednesday, Mar. 9
I ran a 5-mile speed workout today. My knee felt good today, so I’m not sure what to think about the “weird” feeling I was experiencing yesterday. I switched up my speed workout this week after running the same workout the first 3 weeks of my training. This week, I ran four 1-mile repeats at 9.5 mph (6:18 pace) with 1/4 mile of active recovery in-between hard efforts. I really enjoyed this workout and will probably repeat it next week for my speed workout.
Thursday, Mar. 10
I ran a 3-mile recovery run on the treadmill after weights.
Friday, Mar. 11
Today was an off day. We rented The Martian and made pasta for dinner. The carbs will be good for my long run tomorrow.
Saturday, Mar. 12
My long run was 14 miles this week, which is 1 mile longer than my long run last week. I did a pretty good job keeping it easy the first 2/3 of the run, hitting at or close to 8:00 pace. I could still afford to slow it down even more. The last 1/3 of the distance (about 4.6 miles) I kicked it up to marathon race pace. The final 4 complete miles I was right on track: 7:01, 6:50, 6:45, 6:54.
Today, Chicago celebrated St. Patrick’s Day with its annual parade and river dyeing. After my long run, Megan and I went downtown to see the green river.
We did a TON of walking, a little shopping (I got new boots), met up with Megan’s aunt, Kathy, who is in town for spring break, and topped off the evening with Garrett Popcorn and Shake Shack burgers. I always say, one nice benefit of marathon training is being able to eat pretty much whatever you want!
Sunday, Mar. 13
Today was an off day. It rained a bunch, so I’m thankful I didn’t have to worry about running. I did accomplish one running-related thing today (besides writing this post): I registered for the 2016 Chicago Marathon! Guaranteed registration opened this week, allowing me to register as a time qualifier. For men, the time limit is a verified 3:15 (or faster) marathon before January 1, 2014. Chicago will be my first repeat marathon. I’m obviously looking forward to Fargo; it’s my last chance to improve my Boston qualifying time and lock my entry into the 2017 race, but knowing that I get to run Chicago again is really exciting.