Chicago Marathon Training Recap: Week 8

Week 8 finishes out two months of marathon training! Since last week was my first 40+ mile week, I knew I could do it again, and I actually have one more week of high mileage before a much anticipated cutback week.

  • Monday: Rest day
  • Tuesday: 2 mile warm-up to the track, 16 x 400m at 8-10k pace w/45s rest, and a 0.75 mile cool-down back home
  • Wednesday: (am) Pure Barre + (pm) 5 miles easy
  • Thursday: 2 mile warm-up, 3 x 2 miles a little faster than half marathon pace, and a  1 mile cool-down
  • Friday:  Glow yoga – much needed yoga practice under fun black lights!
  • Saturday: 14.3 birthday miles in Pinckney
  • Sunday: 1 easy mile, 5 “steady miles,” and 1.7 easy miles to round up the weekly mileage
  • Weekly mileage = 44

I usually use Friday as my rest day, but since last week’s rest day included 13+ miles of walking around Chicago…I figured a real one was deserved and switched it to Monday.

My cute, 4-legged, running buddy. I’ve started taking him on my cool-down miles over the past couple months, and he and I had our longest run together this week! 2.5 miles on Wednesday

Low of the week was not budgeting enough time on Saturday to get in another 1.7 miles for my schedule 16-miler, but that trail run was tough, and I was out there for about the same time I would’ve for a road 16er. It was actually exactly how I wanted to spend my birthday – trail running long, followed by a giant Cuban burger + margarita at Frita Batido in Ann Arbor.

Chicago Marathon Training Recap: Week 7 (+ a Catch-Up)

Wait, wait, week 7?! Yes, seven! I now owe this blog my three-quarters-of-the-way-written spring half marathon recap, and six whole weeks of marathon training for my upcoming fall race: the Chicago marathon.

Every week I think, “This is it. I’m going to start again,” and then I don’t. I think after spending a whole work day posted in front of a computer, the last thing I want to do when I get home is sit down in front of another one. Despite this, I really enjoy sharing my training, connecting with other runners in this blogosphere, and having something to look back on.

For my first marathon, I was actually more diligent about documenting the first half of training and missed the last few weeks of recaps due a happy storm of wedding/honeymoon/marathon. This time, I’m going to play a little catch-up after this post, perhaps grouping weeks 1-3, and 3-6 in two, brief, separate posts.

The run-down: I entered the Chicago Marathon lottery this past winter – sooner than I expected to have to commit to a marathon so shortly after NYC, but I’d been looking forward to my next marathon even before I finished training for my first. I never published a NYC marathon recap, but I had a really, good experience in New York. I took it very easy in the first half — unafraid to pause for walking breaks (in retrospect, probably more than I actually needed) and soaked in the whole experience. I ran much more of the second half and had enough energy to pick up speed during the last 10k, but I was definitely ready to cross the finish line.

I finished my first marathon in 5:44:XX at a 13:08 pace. I never felt sick, didn’t hit the wall, and completed my only objective: finish happy. It was only until this past spring, training for the Owens Corning Half, that I really started experiment with higher, more consistent weekly mileage and getting an idea of how fast I could run. The first time I actually made and met a time goal. Now, a little more than a year later after beginning training for my first marathon, I have a big goal for Chicago – shaving off a whole lot of time and dipping under 4:30:XX.

Week 7 is actually a cool place to start, if we have to start somewhere in the middle. It was my highest weekly mileage ever: 43 miles. Can I mention how long I’ve wanted to hit 40+ miles?! I vividly remember celebrating 2-mile runs and 10 miles in a week! And frankly, why stop?

  • Monday: Pure Barre
  • Tuesday: 2 mile warm-up to the track, 10 x 800m at 12k pace w/1 minute rest, and a 1 mile cool-down back home
  • Wednesday: 6 miles easy
  • Thursday: 7 miles easy
  • Friday: “Rest” day @ Lollapallooza in Chicago, which actually amounted to ~13 miles walked, according to my Garmin
  • Saturday: 14 miles w/4x60s surges w/5min easy in between along the Chicago Lakefront Trail
  • Sunday: 2 easy miles, 4 “steady miles,” and 1 easy mile
  • Weekly mileage = 43
Oiselle’s very cute stride shorts…matched with my husband’s t-shirt. I could’ve packed better. At least I didn’t forget my shoes.

I was in Chicago Thursday-Saturday this week with my husband and siblings for Lollapalooza, which resulted in a great run to the observatory on Thursday, and a long run along Lake Michigan on Saturday. Lollapalooza didn’t really lend itself to taking it easy on rest day, but all things considered, I did the best I could.

High: braving my first workout on an actual track! There was only one walker there, and I finished right before the college athletes showed up so I’m calling it a big win. I’m sure I could’ve figured out 10x800m somewhere else, but it was nice to shut off the part of my brain that would’ve needed to map a route.

See ya next week!

Did you really do a track workout if you didn’t take a photo of your shoes on the track? 🙂