Weekly Recap: May 4 - 10

Happy Sunday and Happy Mother's Day! We are headed to my mom's house to spend the day.

This was a great week with recovering from the Pittsburgh Half Marathon (my legs have never been so sore after a race!) and getting back into a running routine to prepare for the Ghost Town Half Marathon  on Memorial Day. I also incorporated yoga and strength. Training-wise, I did great. Mentally, not so much.

If you follow my blog, you know I struggle with confidence and approach races with much anxiety. Training for the Pittsburgh Half went so well that my confidence skyrocketed and I had no anxiety for the race. With a very disappointing race (recap here if you missed it), my confidence was shattered. The thing is, it's not just this race. It's pretty much all my races. In all the races I've done, I hit my goal exactly one time. I kick ass in training but typically do not do well in races. Thinking of this started a downward spiral: Maybe I'll never do well in races, so why bother doing them? They pretty much just make me feel bad about myself. Maybe I'm too old. Maybe I'm just not good enough. Maybe I'll never get better. Maybe I just should focus on training, which I'm good at and makes me feel good about myself, and not race at all. I managed to stop the negative thoughts and pull myself out of the negativity. I need to remind myself that I have not been running seriously for very long--about 1.5 years. And I have not done many races. I'm not ready to quit just yet. All I can do is keep trying. Maybe it will end up being true that I just don't perform well in races and that I'll be better off not doing them. But I don't think I have enough experience to decide that yet.

After about one week of actual Spring-like weather, we went straight into summer here in Pittsburgh. Ever since last Sunday for the race, it's been hot with daily temps in or near the 80s. I always say that I love cold weather running and hate hot weather running. But I hate to hate anything, so another thing I've been working on is trying to approach hot weather runs with more of a positive attitude. I had some good practice this week! Also this week the baby geese were out on the trail for the first time, and of course I got chased by the parents for daring to run by.

Mileage for the week was 17.22.


I did an 18-minute core workout that left me sore until Saturday. It was tough!


Easy run: 3.22 miles, 38 minutes, 11:54 pace
It was 60F for my early morning run. It felt awesome to be back out running. And it's now light enough that I no longer need to wear my headlamp.
Lululemon Clear Mint Swiftly Short Sleeve & Fringe Fighter Headband,
White Hit Your Stride Skirt

I did yoga in the evening.

20 minutes strength training

Pace run: 6 miles, 1:08
I did 4 miles at race pace (11:00) with warm-up and cool-down. It was 73F when I started at 9 a.m. and 78 when I finished. My next half marathon has a 9 a.m. start, so I wanted to practice starting a bit later and running in the heat and sun to get used to it. The first 2 pace miles felt like they usually do--easy and relaxed--leaving me to wonder why I struggled so much in the race. It all hit me like a wall right when I was starting mile 3--the heat, the sun, the hard effort, the feeling like I needed to stop and walk or die. I started panicking: I can't run in the heat. It's too hard. How am I going to run a half marathon in a few weeks if it feels like this? Why did I sign up for it? Maybe I should just take a DNS. But I recognized the panic for what it was, calmed myself down, and forced myself to just stay in that mile. I just had to hold my pace for that mile. I focused, pushed, and got it done. When I got through it, I did the same thing for the last mile. Splits were 10:46, 10:58, 11:01, and 10:55. I'm really proud of myself for this run. I wanted nothing more than to give up and walk, but I kept at it and held my pace. It was such a struggle, though, that I nearly cut my cool-down mile short. I told myself I only needed to run a half mile as a cool down. I'm glad I didn't give in, because I had an a-ha moment when I felt so much better the second half of my cool down mile. I realized that as bad as I'm feeling, if I just keep running at an easy pace, it should only take me a half mile to feel better. This is something I need to remember when I feel like walking during a race.  Unfortunately, my heart rate monitor wasn't working for this run, so I don't have the data to see what my heart rate was for my pace miles.
Lululemon Electric Coral Pace Rival Skirt, Creamsicle Energy Bra &
Rad Plaid Hat
Athleta Wasabi Green Heather Stripe Chi Tank

Long run: 8 miles, 1:41, 12:41 pace
It was another hot, sunny, cloudless morning, with temps in the 70s when I started and rising to 77 by the time I finished. I ran on the flat river trail since my next race is a flat trail. I have to say that having trained in hilly North Park all winter, I much prefer a route with rolling hills over a flat course now. The hills add interest and challenge and seem to make long runs go quicker. I switched to my old heart rate monitor that still works fine and kept my heart rate in the easy range. I also wore a wide-brim visor I just bought and wet my hair with cold water just before I left the house. I wore a really awesome top with mesh in the back that I got recently when Athleta had a sale on sale (it's still on sale). There was a bit of  a breeze, and with my head wet and open to the air and the mesh in the back of my shirt, it really helped keep me cool. When I did get hot, I forced myself to stay calm and relax and to focus on my form. I must have been doing a good job on my form, because a woman on a bike passed me and said to me, "Looking good!" She must have been a runner and knew what a struggle it is to run a long run in the heat and sun. I felt like I did really well maintaining a good attitude and staying calm and relaxed, and as a result this run never felt awful.
Lululemon Fast Paced Run Visor & Menthol All Sport Bra
Athleta Amethyst Haze Mesh Splice Chi Muscle Tank
Skirt Sports Gym Girl Ultra Skirt in Streak
This shows how wide the brim is. It keeps nearly my
whole face in shade.

Showing the mesh in the back.
All three skirts I wore this week are new, so I'll have a performance review of each of them soon. Happy running and working out this week!

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