Sunday, April 17, 2016

Running lessons: Sometimes the best training is rest

I'm having trouble keeping up with everything these days. Between work, social commitments, chores and marathon training, there just aren't enough hours in the day - never mind finding time to write - so tonight's post will be brief.

On the running front, reducing the intensity of my workouts for a week seemed to pay off. After covering a mere 29 kms last weekend (19k on Saturday and 10k on Sunday), I ramped up again this past week and comfortably completed three "quality" workouts - an 8k hill training session Tuesday, a 7.5k tempo workout on Thursday and 30.5k long run yesterday.

I hoped to round out the week with an 8-10k recovery run today but ran out of time and energy. After sleeping in a bit, Husband and I went to church this morning, then cooked and ate a delicious brunch and headed to Risser's Beach for a walk (see photo at the top of this post), before dropping by my sister's place for a quick visit. When we finally arrived back at the house around 5:00, it was so lovely and warm that we opted for a beer on the deck rather than a run.

I'm disappointed I missed today's workout but suspect I needed the extra recovery time in any case. Yesterday's 30.5k felt remarkably good - much better than last weekend's 19k - but I slept for nearly 11 hours last night so it must have taken a toll. By tomorrow, I'll be in better shape to run an easy 7-8k to loosen up in preparation for the more challenging workouts I have on my schedule later in the week.

Looking ahead, I'm planning just two more really long runs before Calgary - a 31k next weekend and a 34k two weeks after that, with a 16-20k run on the weekend in between - hopefully in warmer temperatures. The weather in Calgary has been positively summery lately, which is worrying. If things don't cool off before the end of May, I'm in serious trouble. There's no way I'll be ready to run 42.2k at altitude in temperatures in the 25C range.

Today was the warmest day we've had in awhile but I still had to bundle up in a jacket and wool sweater for our beach walk.

As comparatively cool as the weather was this weekend, it was a big improvement over last Sunday, when we got hit with another blast of winter...

...after a gloriously spring-like day on Saturday, when these little guys dropped by for a visit. I don't recall seeing cedar waxwings on our property before so I was thrilled to spot them and get a few photos before they flew off.

Speaking of photos, I spent more time than usual with my camera last weekend. I had forgotten how much I like my big zoom. The images it captures have much more warmth and depth than those I get with my other lenses - which likely says more about skills as a photographer than the lenses. In any case, I really like how this photo of the last of my birthday flowers turned out. 

In closing, a note to self: Sometimes the "training" I need most (now that I'm a runner of a certain age) is a little more rest to give my body and heart time to catch up with my head. It's a lesson I learned years ago but have trouble remembering sometimes. In any case, it paid off big time this weekend so I'll try to get as much rest as possible in the 6 weeks remaining before race day.

Happy running!

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