Pittsburgh Half Training: Week 14

Happy Boston Marathon Monday! Good luck to everyone running. I'll be tracking the two people I know running it, Mike K. and my friend Krista.

Last week was peak week for me, resulting in a weekly mileage PR of 40.1! This was a really great week to end the intense training cycle and begin tapering. The fatigue that I experienced two weeks ago has stayed away, and I feel great.

This week also brought blossoms to Pittsburgh! I have a cherry tree in my backyard and on Wednesday was surprised to come home to a tree full of pretty blossoms. After that I started to notice blossoms everywhere. And I wore a tank top running for the first time. It finally feels like Spring is here!  

After reading so many great reviews, I bought Yurbuds. Wow! Everyone is right. One of the reasons I don't listen to music is because my earphones hurt and they always fall out. Yurbuds are so comfortable that I didn't even feel them, and they truly don't fall out. Love them!

Week 14 Grade: A

I did 45 minutes of strength training in the morning and 50 minutes of yin yoga in the evening.

Easy run: 6 miles, 1:13, 12:12 pace
It was 54F, cool, and windy, and I'm still learning how to dress. My hands were freezing the whole run. Otherwise, no problems on this run.
Athleta Coral Sizzle Chi Top & Asphalt Relay Capris
VSX Knockout Bra
Lululemon Beachscape Bangbuster

Pace run: 6 miles, 1:08
When I saw it was 48F, I wasn't messing around and wore my gloves. Even though I ended up pushing my sleeves up when I got warm, I still wore my gloves. I don't care if I look silly; they really help keep me comfortable. I had four miles at race pace (11:00). As with other pre-work pace runs, this was tougher than my weekend pace runs. The inclines especially were tough. I had to work for it, but I came in with good paces: 10:51, 10:30, 10:53, 10:32.
48F and not messing around. Winter gear again.
Lululemon Heathered Slate Speed Tights,
Rulu Long Sleeve, Ear Warmer

Easy run: 7 miles, 1:27, 12:25 pace
54F again, wore gloves, and again was comfortable. It's funny that 7 miles used to be my weekend long run, and now I'm doing it before work. It doesn't seem long anymore.
Athleta Coral Sizzle Half Zip
Lulu Clear Mint CRB & Fringe Fighter
Black Chase Me Crops

Rest day! I did a 30-minute hip-opening sequence from Yoga Journal.

Pace run: 8 miles, 1:30
I had 6 miles at race pace (11:00) on the schedule. I decided to go later so that I could avoid the Pirates 5K that was on the river trail and to run when it was warmer since I haven't run in warm temps all year. I also wanted to try running in the capris and tank that I might wear on race day. When I went out it was 54, but the sun was intense and it felt much warmer. Almost as soon as I started my warm-up mile, I knew I was in trouble. I immediately got hot, and my heart rate was sky high. Since I was struggling on just my warm-up mile, I told myself I could take .25-mile rests between my pace miles. That first mile at race pace, which included three bridge climbs, was super tough. When I looked at my heart rate after the run, I was surprised to see it was up to 202, when I thought my max was 184. I bet my monitor was acting up, but that first mile was tough! But then, somehow, someway, my heart rate settled and I got into a groove. I listened to music, and I think that helped me get my mind off the heat. I didn't have to take rests, but I did have to work at keeping my pace. The last mile got really tough. It was over 70 at that point and extremely hot. My stomach got really upset, and I felt awful. I actually stopped several times in that last mile. I know I have a really hard time running in the heat, and this run confirmed that. Splits were 10:54, 10:33, 10:39, 10:47, 10:51, and 10:46. It's really a miracle that I hit my race pace so well, but I think I paid for it with feeling so bad in that last mile.
I like these crops much better with a green top so the
focus is on green, not blue. I think this is a contender for
my race day outfit!
Athleta Dress Blue Splatter Be Free Knicker
Lululemon Bali Breeze CRB & Purple Fog Energy Bra

Long run: 13.1 miles, 2:38, 12:06 pace
Peak week finished with 13 miles, but I tacked on .1 to make it a half marathon distance. I met Amanda at North Park, and we got started while it was still on the cool side. Construction is finally over, so we were able to do the standard five-mile lake loop, which was nice! It got warmer later on, so I shed my long sleeve top and wore just my tank after that. It was sunny, breezy, and a really nice morning. It was a great run to end peak week.
Forgot to take a picture at North Park. This is after
the run in front of my cherry tree.
Athleta Asphalt Be Free Knicker & Heather Stripe White Chi Tank
Lululemon Menthol All Sport Bra & Bangbuster

After the run I did about 15 minutes of gentle yoga.

In the afternoon we attended the annual reunion for Three Rivers Greyhounds (TRG), the adoption group that Django came from. Different greyhound adoption groups use different strategies. Some groups place greyhounds right off the track in foster homes before they're adopted. Some groups, like TRG, keep greyhounds in a kennel so that the first home they go to is their adopted homes. It's been almost three years since we adopted Django, and he still remembers the people from the adoption group and the kennel where he went after the track, and he goes crazy when he sees them! He also got to see my friend who he stays with when we go out of town and her two greyhounds, who are his buddies, since my friend was selling her collars there. And, of course, he got to see a bunch of other greyhounds. So it was excitement overload for him. He was, as he usually is, the only greyhound to spaz out and get super excited. The only other greyhound who gets excited like that is one of my friend's greyhounds--one of Django's buddies--so it is always a circus when the two of them get together. One of the events at the reunion was a fun run where they clocked greyhounds running with a radar gun. Django clocked in at 31 mph! We also got to meet some of the adoptables. There were three small females up for adoption, and one of them was so super sweet and affectionate. She just wanted to be petted and petted. I tried to take a picture of her and Django. After all the excitement at the reunion, Django slept all night long. He didn't even wake up to go outside to do his business! He must have been really beat and was growling in his sleep like he does when he's zonked out.
Django at the greyhound reunion

Right of Django is the female for adoption we loved (name is something like Thea).
She's so sweet and pretty!
You can see how much smaller females are.

Race day is just two weeks away. I'm ready, and I'm excited. But for now, I'm going to enjoy these next two weeks of taper.

Happy running and working out this week!

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