Weekly Running Recap

What a great week and weekend! It's rare that Pittsburgh sees so many nice weekends in a row, but this is our third straight weekend of gorgeous weather. I hope everyone got outside to enjoy it.

Last week:

Coming up:
I am so excited about these next few weeks! This upcoming week will be a taper week, where I'll have only one hard workout and then easy runs all week, before the Man Up Father's Day 10K next Sunday. Then after that I'll be taking a few rest weeks with easy runs while I start putting my next training plan together. In July I'll start training for my fall half marathon, which I've been looking forward to since I finished it last year! I feel like I'm in a really great place physically and mentally for half marathon training.

Last week's running recap:

Monday was my rest day. I did one easy mile.

Easy Run--Distance: 1 mile

Tuesday was a really tough workout--3.5 miles at race pace. Again I used my strategy of 20 seconds slower than race pace for the first mile, cutting down to 10 seconds slower for the second mile, and then running at race pace for the last 1.5 miles. It was very tough, but it helped that the morning was cool. I had brought my handheld water bottle filled with Nuun but felt very depleted after the run. This made me realize that even though I may look silly, I'll need to take an energy gel halfway through my 10K race to keep my energy up.

Race Simulation Run--Distance: 4.51 miles | Time: 47:41 | Pace: Easy warm-up and cool down runs then moderate pace building to very hard race pace
50 minutes yin yoga

Wednesday was an easy run in a gloriously cool morning on the river trail.

Easy Run--Distance: 4.15 miles | Time: 47:57 | Pace: Easy
40 minutes strength training

Thursday were three .75-mile intervals at race pace with .25 miles recovery on another cool morning on the river trail.

Intervals--Distance: 4.07 miles | Time: 44:48 | Pace: Easy warm-up and cool-down runs with very hard intervals

Friday was a non-running day, so I did another short, cool, early-morning run.

Easy Run--Distance: 1.01 mile
30 minutes strength training 

Saturday was my long run day, and I wanted to practice fueling. I got so sick during my first half marathon last September that I have been reluctant to try different fueling options in fear I'll get sick again. For that race, I used Clif Shot Bloks with caffeine and was unsure whether caffeine contributed to my nausea. To test it out Saturday, I took a Clif Shot Energy Gel (Chocolate Cherry) with 100 mg of caffeine before my run and then another with 50 mg of caffeine (Mocha) halfway through my run.
You always hear how bad energy gels taste, but these tasted like dessert. I though they were delicious. But the best part was that I felt absolutely incredible on my run. I had more energy and felt more fantastic than I ever remember feeling on a long run. I'm so happy to know that my stomach isn't sensitive to caffeine, and that these energy gels work well for me.

I went out on the river trail past the casino and back. It was sunny but not too hot, so the sun didn't bother me at all. Maybe I'm building a tolerance? This run called for a strong finish for the last ten minutes, speeding up to a 30-45 seconds faster pace. Not only did I nail that with no problem, but I was able to do a nearly all-out sprint for the past .01 mile and finished without my heart rate being sky high. I felt awesome!

Long Run--Distance: 7 miles | Time: 01:22 | Pace: Easy

By the time I got home, showered, and ate lunch, it had gotten really warm. We like to do a hike or walk with the dog on weekends, but Django is very heat intolerant. So we decided to go to the Beechview-Seldom Seen Greenway, which I'd never been to. Seldom Seen was actually a small village, but nothing remains now except for woods and a creek. The trail is very short, but the creek is perfect for walking through. There are even deeper pool areas that would be ideal for dogs or people who aren't afraid of swimming in creeks (not me!). The water was very clear. Django really liked walking through the creek, though he didn't like the parts where he kept slipping on the muddy rocks. It took us about five minutes to get to the greenway (via West End Bridge--just go south on 51 and the turn-off is just after a big dome where salt is stored), so it was a nice way to get out for just a little bit.

Sign at the entrance to the Beechview-Seldom Seen Greenway
Cool tunnel to get to the trail
Django lies down in the creek to cool off

Butterfly we saw near the trail
Django and me walking by the creek
Django walking in the creek
Django and me by the creek (Note--I'm wearing the Athleta Relay Skort I mentioned in the beginning.
I wear them for nearly every run and everywhere else!)
My handsome boy!

Sunday was an easy run on the river trail, this time going away from the city. It was humid but cloudy and breezy, which felt great.

Easy Run--Distance: 4 miles | Time: 47:26 | Pace: Easy

It was very humid in the afternoon and hot when the sun came out, so we just took Django to West Park in the Northside near us. He got to greet another greyhound we sometimes see, Rudy, but in just a half-hour walk he was absolutely beat from the humidity.
At West Park in the Northside
Happy running this week!

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