A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Via Marathon Training: Week 2

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Week 2 of Hansons is the first week that incorporates speed workouts. Other than that, it was a bunch of 6 milers, an 8 miler, and the sacred rest day! I didn't get much lifting in because Hansons doesn't know about my need to be swole. I will have to talk to them about that...

Most of my runs were supposed to be "easy"... no faster than an 8:51 pace. The speed work, well, I ran it too fast. More about that in the re-cap.

On to the workouts!

Monday- 6 easy miles. I was very tired- maybe from my mountain run the day before? I was able to stay right at the prescribed easy pace. Avg Pace: 8:53

Tuesday- Today was the first speed work day of my training. I woke up at the ass crack of dawn and did 12x400 with 400 recoveries in between. Adding a 1.5 mile w/u and c/d brought me to 9 miles. 

My pace for the 400s were to be 6:53-7:10, but that seemed like a little slow to me. I felt like 400s should be sprints. I did them a lot faster than Hansons told me too, but the same pace I did them when I was training in Feb/Mar on the treadmill.

Intervals: 1:38, 1:36, 1:34, 1:35, 1:34, 1:35, 1:35, 1:34, 1:34, 1:34, 1:36, 1:33.

The result? I had a PIMA on the way to work, which pissed me off! I felt really strong after the workout and then the PIMA knocked me right off my high horse.

After posting about this workout on my blog and reading everyone's comments, as well as consulting with Kristina and Allison, I determined that I should stick to the speed paces. Kristina sent me something from the book that stuck in my mind: "We cannot stress enough that workouts are designed to spur specific physiological adaptations; they are not to be run as hard as you can."

Got it.

So unless I am willing to make my marathon goal time faster (which I'm not willing to do, I have a hard time thinking I am capable of a 3:25, so anything faster seems like a dream), I should stick to the pace Hansons says for everything- even the speed.

Oh, I also bought the marathon and half marathon book so I don't have to keep asking Kristina to send me quotes!

I stretched and foam rolled and the PIMA was almost gone by that night and gone the next day. (But it wasn't for long, stay tuned!)

Wednesday- Rest! I slept until 7:15am and it was glorious!!! But I was barely hungry at all. I had a small bowl of cereal at 10, lunch at 12:30, and then dinner wasn't until 7:30. I didn't even eat any snacks. Very strange. I love to eat and I was sad I wasn't hungry! What I am very happy about is that I truly didn't mind the rest day. I didn't feel "fat" or anything like that. It was truly fine resting completely for a day. I am glad I am in a place where I can do that without going crazy!

Thursday- Easy 6 miles. I started a little fast but slowed it down. I was really close to the prescribed pace! I had an awesome podcast to listen to, so that always makes a run more fun. Unfortunately, the PIMA cropped up around mile 3. It didn't hurt a lot or anything, but it was there. FUCK!!! Avg Pace: 8:50.

Friday- Another easy 6 miles. Last week when I was running easy, I felt so sluggish. This week, I felt a lot better while running slow. I did two of the miles a tiny bit too fast and two a tad bit slow. The other two miles were *just right* but my average pace ended up about 10 seconds too fast. But there is bad news... the PIMA flared up at mile 3 again. It was no better and no worse than the day before, but it was there. I was panicking. What should I do?? Take a few days off? I knew it would be better to take the days off now and nip whatever this is in the bud. This really weighted heavily on my mind.... Avg Pace: 8:39.

Saturday- We went to the gym and I lifted back. I got done before Paul, so I started my easy 6 miler on the treadmill. I alternated the pace between 8:49-8:57. I messed with the incline as well. I got 2.25 miles done before Paul was done. I was hyper aware of any weird butt pain. Luckily, there was none! Woo!!! Then I went home, tested out a Honey Stinger waffle (yummy!) and did 3.75 miles out in the rain. I was very close to pace- just a few seconds under. And there was no ass pain! This was a good sign.

Asst. Pull Ups (wide grip)- 1x8, 4x6 (10lb asst.)
Cable Row- 5x15x50lb
Asst. Pull Ups (neutral grip)- 2x8, 3x6 (10lb asst.)
Bicep Curls- 3x10x17.5lb (I couldn't squeak out the very last rep!)
Bicycles- 5x40
Capt. Chair- 3x20
Hip/Glute stuff and lots of stretching!

I was sore the next day from this lifting workout. That is strange. I rarely ever get sore! But it is nice to know I pushed myself.

Sunday- 8 easy miles. I was nervous. Would my butt pain crop up? I did 5.16 miles, gave Paul a ride somewhere, then finished up the last 2.84. Why does 2.84 sound like a lot less then 3? NO BUTT PAIN GUYS. I am cautiously optimistic, but I know as soon as I get all cocky that it's gone, it will pop up again. I am not superstitious unless it has to do with running injuries/niggles. I was almost exactly on pace this whole run and I didn't even have to keep looking at my Garmin. I think my body is just sliding into this whole 8:51 pace at this point.

Here is how I would grade myself on my training goals this week...

Training Goals:

1. Rest days = complete rest! A
2. Walk 1 min per mile run. A
3. Stretch after each run. A
4. Foam roll when needed. A
5. Glute/hip exercises 5 days per week. B- I skipped the PIMA days because doing these exercises can aggravate the PIMA. It doesn't cause it, but if I already have the pain, it doesn't help it go away any faster.
6. Stick to the prescribed paces. B- My goal is to have an A for this one next week!
7. Practice proper hydration and fueling. Read as much as I can on the topic. D- I actually bought Nuun and Gus so while I didn't use them yet, I at least purchased them!
8. Alter training if I feel potential for injury. N/A

I will be honest, the only day I felt like I worked out at all or pushed myself was Tuesday. All these easy running days... when I am done, I feel like I could just keep running forever. I didn't feel like I did anything. I know that's the point, and after several weeks of training I will develop cumulative fatigue and I will be tired. Don't worry- I get that. I am just being honest now in that I don't feel like I am doing much. That's a good sign though! If in Week 2 I was tired and burnt out... that would be a bad sign! Plus, I counted it up and realized I ran over 40 miles! Not a bad volume! Next week will  incorporate a MP run and a weekly mileage total of 47. I think that will be my highest mileage in a long time!


PS. I have a feeling in a couple weeks I will look back at this post and wish I felt as fresh as I do now!
How were your workouts this week?


  1. Oh man! I hope that PIYA goes away and never comes back. I hate little things like that because they can really keep me from enjoying a workout. It sounds like your training is going great, though!! I am laying low for a while until I start Hanson's Marathon Training with ya! Last week I ran 15 miles and I slept a ton (I don't mean to brag or anything...).

    Have you looked up stuff about your pain? I know butt pain is often Piraformis Syndrome. You might want to look at some stretches for that.

    1. I was going to ask the same thing about PS! When I had PS the stretches I did would feel like they were aggravating it but in the long run they were relieving it. Do you ever feel the pain in your lower back as well as deep in your butt cheeks?

    2. It is all good to brag about excellent recovery methods! :) I am excited you decided to do Hansons.

      I didn't really look up much about PS because I have had this butt pain before and it always mysteriously goes away with stretching/rolling. I do pigeon pose which really seems to help. Kristina, I don't feel it in my back or anything and it doesn't go down my leg. When I feel it, it's just in my glute.

  2. Ugh, that damn PIYA. I hope it mellows out as training continues.

    Hanson's seems to counterintuitive. We're told not to run junk miles, that each run has a purpose, and yet so many easy miles usually the definition of junk! But, the plan says the runs are planned for specific benefits, so I guess they're not junk...even if on the surface they seem that way?! IDK.

    12 repeats sound INTENSE by the way. Nice job on your week!!

    1. Thank you Ali! It was intense for like the very first one! Normally when I start speed training after a week off, I start with 6-8 repeats of something.

      I know exactly what you mean about the junk miles. I am a firm believer of NO JUNK MILES- mainly because I was addicted to cardio and used to do 2 hours of it a day. Talk about junk miles.

      HOWEVER, this is the main thing the mentioned about junk miles in the book and it really spoke to me:

      “Cumulative fatigue is designed to make you tired, but running paces faster than prescribed will put you beyond the point of being able to recover sufficiently. That really is junk mileage."

      Of course, every plan is not for every BODY and I am sure after a month or so I will really know if this Hansons thing is for ME. Right now it is too early to tell. But I do like having a solid training plan and checking off workouts. This is the first marathon I've ever had a SET plan for.

  3. Holy cow! I forgot that the advanced plan has you running such high mileage right from the beginning. I am really glad to hear that you still feel fresh after 40+ miles, I think that means you made the right decision by going with the adv. plan! Now you just need to kick that PIYA out!

    Great week!!! :) I am almost done with Meb for Mortals. Last night I read a chapter where he talks about keeping his speedwork in check and how he believes we should always finish each session feeling like we could have done more. I was going to text the quote to you but I thought that might be super annoying! I don't even know why I'm telling you now except just to say I thought of you! Also I was excited that Meb basically advocates for a plan very similar to Hansons throughout his book, except he incorporates more cross training than Hansons does. Which could just be because ElliptiGO is one of his sponsors.. Hm!

    1. Getting a text w/ a Meb quote from my friend Kristina would be far from annoying! I think I would really like to read his book.

      As far as Meb/sponsor/Elliptigo... He is an "older" runner so I can understand how he could be a firm advocate of doing some of his easy mileage on the elliptigo as to lessen the pounding on his body but still get that fatigue. Is that what he says? How many miles does he run a week? HOW FAST DOES MEB RUN 400S????? Considering he can run a full marathon at a faster pace than I can run one 400.... wow, I just thought a lot about that statement and my mouth is on the floor!!! These elites are like robots!!!

      Yeah I really think the only reason I feel fine running 40+ miles right now is that 5 out of the 6 runs are nothing crazy. However I just did my week 3 speed work this am, tomorrow is rest, then thurs is TEMPO so now it's like 2/6 workouts are going to be challenging!! I had 3 days in a row of no butt pain so I continue to be cautiously optimistic.

    2. I would give the book **** stars. Some parts are really interesting and insightful and some are a little bit boring. The last couple of chapters I skimmed everything, and Ali said she found it a little bit boring by the end. It's cool to see what stretches he does before/after and to hear more detail on his thoughts when it comes to training for a big race. He talks about his training and nutrition leading into his Boston win some.

      He follows a 9 day cycle, which I remember you did before as well! You two are the only ones I know who have done that :)! I think he said he covers about 80-90 mpw these days. He used to do 120-130 I think, but now he only runs once a day and does cross training once a day instead of doing two runs per day. He did mention that he uses the ElliptiGO to be gentler on his body now that he's older. He tracks his heart rate and knows he's still getting the effort in.

      Meb doesn't go into detail about his repeats from what I remember. I know he said he goes off of effort rather than pace in a lot of instances. I don't think he focuses on 400s/800s too much anymore, and instead focuses on marathon and half marathon pace tempos.

    3. OMG I did use a 9 day cycle! I feel so en vogue. But mine was so I could lift, I wonder if he lifts?? I guess that makes sense that he wouldn't do 400s and 800s. Well I generally don't like reading running books but this one I would like to give a try. Thanks for all the deets!

  4. A couple things...Fueling. For Boston (and a couple of long runs prior) I switched to a fuel called "Untapped". (It is local right now, started by Ted King a TDF cyclist). It is PURE maple syrup in a Gu-type packet. It was GREAT. Instead of a glob of GU in your mouth, when you squeeze it in, it just disappears. Surprisingly, it wasn't strong tasting either. Pure maple syrup has minerals (K), etc.
    and to piggy back on Kristina's comment, Meb is a strong sponsor of Elliptigo, but I think his age also has something to do with it (speaking from experience here... ;) ).
    I have a hard time reeling in my speed work too!

    1. I replied to Kristina before I read your comment here, but yah I have a feeling it may have to do with age??? Hopefully I can afford and elliptigo when I am "old" like Meb. ;) Hmmm I need to google how old Meb is now.

      That Untapped sounds interesting!! I am glad you found something you liked. I didn't try the Gu yet, but from what I remember from the last time I had it (10 yrs ago) it was so thick and gross.

  5. I am completely intrigued with following along on Hanson's Method. I am constantly trying to do an easy run each week but I can never get myself to slow down. Oh well, running at my normal pace for 3 miles about 4 times per week just seems to work OK. Good thing I am not training for a race! I hope your PITA gets better. I have it but it's not in my butt. It's high hamstring attachment. I have a name for it but I will message that to you :) Just watching athletes sprint causes me to cringe. Speed is not in my life and I am OK as long as I can run (and swim and bike).

    1. I don't think there is anything wrong with just running whatever pace you enjoy Susan, because like you said, you're not training for a race! If I wasn't training for anything right now I'd just be running whatever I felt like.

      I am interested in learning the name for your PITA! :)

  6. This is all so great! Well, not the PIMA part, but I'm glad that went away. The mileage, the paces, I love it!!! Super excited for you.

    1. Thanks Suzy! I am trying hard to follow all the rules. :)

  7. It sounds like your training is going really well!! I'm very happy for you!

    I have to keep reminding myself that you do this before you go to work... which makes it more impressive to me. Before I go to work, I can barely put a set of clothes together.

    1. I just love getting it done and out of the way. There are some days I *could* do it after work but I just don't want to. Although today's 5am alarm was suckyyyyy! Hansons has you doing 9 milers twice during the week, so for me to have time to run that, cool down, stretch... adds time. :(

  8. Thank you Karen! Yes annoying little niggles are the worst.

    Yeah we like our 400s FAST!! 7:45- that's awesome! I had speed work today and stuck to the paces. They were 600s and they were hard because I was sick this morning and felt like a zombie runner. :( I feel better now though.

  9. Nice job with your training, and I'm glad that the pain went away! It sounds like it was the speed work that aggravated it and it just took a few days to go away? Did you do the 400s on a track? I'm just wondering because I know people say that running in circles can cause weird muscle imbalances. Your 400 paces are impressive considering you did 12 of them! (Even though you went too fast:))

    1. Yes, I think it was definitely the speed work and I am *cautiously* happy that it did take a few days but it did disappear. Today I did speed work at the prescribed pace and with stretching and foam rolling I was able to not feel any pain so I am super *cautiously* happy about that. I am so superstitious when it comes to niggles.

      And I will admit I am mad. I wish my body would freaking hold up when I try to push it hard. But I will just have to get over that and be happy that I can do what I can do right now.

      I did not to the 400s on a track because I realized it would require getting up at 4:30am rather than 5am! What I did was used mapmyrun and found a stretch in my neighborhood that was very, very flat. I ran out and back on that stretch 12 times.

      Today I did 600s and used my .35 mile loop to do those! It wasn't completely flat BUT since I slowed my pace down I didn't really care. I stuck to the prescribed paces today. I was sick though and felt like a zombie so it was definitely not as enjoyable as my first speed session.

      Thank you! I was nervous to see if I could run FAST again considering I haven't run anything with even a 7 in front of it since my half marathon!

      From now on I am going to trust Hanson and do what they say. Silly for me to think I know more than they do. :) But hey we're runners so we're all "experts" right? ;)

    2. At least you figured it out early on rather than burning out or getting seriously injured later in training!

    3. For sure! And you know that is one of the benefits of having a blog- I am forced to reflect on my workouts because I am going to write about them. And I also have runners reading who can give me their two cents when needed OR call me out when I am doing something I shouldn't!

  10. Sounds like a great week to me! I get that same PIMA whenever I do speedwork. It vanishes as soon as I drop the speed. I'm glad you're keeping your strength work in there.

    1. In the summer I will be able to fit more in because I can run in the morning and lift in the PM. Until then I can only do it once or twice a week! :(