Hills. This was the theme of the week as we mentally prepare for the week to follow. Hill training will commence on Wednesday from now until god knows when. But, according to my training schedule I began hills two weeks prior, so really I should have nothing to fear. Ya right! Does anyone know how hilly the County Marathon is? Not that it really matters, there is no getting out of hill training with this running group. And not that the hilliness of the route really matters to me, I’m one of those people who will not look at the course route before a race – it’s information I don’t really need. Or rather want to know. I have 42.2k to worry about running, thinking about the route will just add to my reasons to worry.
I did do my hill training during week three – just as my program told me to do – and was very proud of the fact I actually did it. 4 x 600m done. And thank goodness I live so close to Poplar Plains. It makes running hills not feel as bad because knowing I don’t have far to run to get there kind of makes the process seem less daunting. Kind of.
Week 5 was, I think, my first solid week of running. I took Monday completely off from running, but this was not a off day to do nothing. Monday was a full on day at the studio! I taught the morning community class, worked the desk, practiced, then taught the evening 6pm class. It was busy! Tuesday I got the required 6k in during lunch – another day at the office another solid run on my own.
Wednesday I went running with Julie (hi, Julie). Both of us had to miss the evening clinic due to work, so we planned a running date for the morning. It was the perfect day to run. We both felt great, we had a steady tempo going and the hype of the other runners wasn’t there to intimidate us. I think this is why we had so much fun! That and trying to figure out where the heck we were going for the most part made the run that much more interesting. But that’s the thing you have to love about running in Toronto there is so much to see and too many random places you could end up, but you’ll never really get lost. We got our 10k in and I was feeling super good about it. I even ran to meet Julie then ran home, tagging on a few extra kilometres. Even better!
For far at this point in the training, for some strange reason Thursdays are not my day. I’m usually tired, I run slow, and I hate the idea of running each time this particular day rolls around. Thank goodness I had Julie again to get me through – we struggled, but we buckled down and got through it. I hate it when 8k feels long. And just like that it was Friday (my favourite day!). I had zero running to do and an event that evening I was really looking forward to attending. Alice was hosting a Yoga for Runners fundraiser where she and another mentor of mine, Vanessa Montenegro from Flipswitch Studio, tag team taught a kick ass yoga class (literally it kicked our asses!). There were prizes to be won and lots of Vega treats to be consumed, it was a good night in my yoga books.
So I just realized now that week 5 was not a solid week of running. Bummer… I did not run on Saturday. But I went SUPing (or Stand Up Paddleboarding if you will) for almost 2 hours Saturday morning. The water this day was a bit rough for my liking, that combined with my fear of falling in the lake the entire time, made me a timid SUP’er. The water looked cold, and the weather wasn’t the greatest. So I held back, just a bit.
But SUPing is my new love. I really do love it! Interested? Check out Jenn at Big City Boards and she will take you.
Sunday was our long run and my first long run with the clinic. Arriving at the store was anything but relaxing. It was kinda bananas! There were so many people, different coaches pointing people in different directions, I just wanted out of there and fast. 19k was the planned route and because I couldn’t find my pace group nor did I know my pace group leader, I found the 4:00 group and ran with them. Oops. But not really! I really want to run a sub 4 hour race, but I know I should not let that be my focus for my first marathon. So I won’t think about it. The first leg of the run was awful, but getting the kinks out early on meant I left faster and stronger towards the middle and at the end. It was a much better run than I had anticipated that’s for sure. I was feeling very happy afterward.
And to end the week off right, I went to the studio for yin yoga with live music. In my training books I’d say week 5 was a solid training week after all!