Chicago Marathon Training: Week 5 Recap

Hi all!! I hope everyone had a good weekend as we enter MID JULY!! Where has the time gone??

I know what I’ve been doing–running!! And this week was a pretty good week in that department.

Last Monday I spent my usual 45 minutes on the bike and did a few core strengthening videos at home. Nothing too exciting.

Tuesday morning I had all the intentions of doing some strength training videos but I had my monthly lady visitor (sorry guys, tmi) and I was not in the mood for anything at all. In fact, I pretty much laid in bed all day until it was time for me to run.

I made it out to my run club at 6 and had 5 miles on the plan. It was super hot–nothing new–and I wasn’t feeling well. I think that’s why I ran so fast, 9:17/mile–I wanted to get it over with lol!

Hot run.

Hot run.

I still wasn’t myself Wednesday and continued to rest until it was time for me to run. Wednesdays are speed work days with my run club so I made it out to the track with the hopes I could muster the energy for a good run.

On the plan were 6x800s. My coach asked me what my goal pace was (4:00-05) and he said he’d pace me. This was both a good and bad thing. Good because it would hold me accountable, bad because it would hold me accountable.

I nailed the first 800 at 4:04 and the second at 4:02. Things were getting speedy with the third one at 3:58 and the fourth one was back at 4:03.

I was loving the consistency; I was on a roll!!

And then my hands started to itch….

here we go again. 😦 I let my coach know I was feeling an allergy attack coming and that I was going to have to cut the workout short.

I was super bummed.

Thursday morning I managed to crawl myself out of bed to run with the 5 at 5 crew. I was still feeling the effects of the previous night’s Benedryl so I took the 5 miles nice and easy, 10:09/average.

Friday was a rest day I took full advantage of.

My long run schedule for Saturday had 14 miles and I knew I would have to have an early start. I woke up before my alarm (at 3:15!!) and in my still half asleep brain, forgot to pack fuel in my water pack! I didn’t realize this until I had already met up with my friend crazy enough to run with me at 4 in the morning. She had extra fuel I could use but I was worried as it was not anything I had tried before.

The plan was to run 6 miles and then meet up with the rest of our run club at 5 a.m. Our friends we were meeting up with had 8 miles on their schedule so it worked out perfectly in that I’d have company for my entire run.

My splits for this run were all over the place. From the start, I just couldn’t get into a good rhythm.

Nowhere near as consistent as my 800s on Wednesday lol!

Nowhere near as consistent as my 800s on Wednesday lol!

When we finally met up with my 5 a.m. friends, my 4 a.m. buddy needed a potty break so I hung out with the other gals. While I waited, I took the unfamiliar Gu and knew it was not going to work (Mocha is not my go-to flavor). My other friend had some Honey Stinger chews (which are super yummy) but I think with the combination of that and mocha, my stomach was just not feeling it. I had to stop to use the restroom when I got to mile 8.

And it was just hard to get going. I couldn’t maintain a steady pace and the whole run just felt uncomfortable. When we got to the bridge that signaled one mile left, I did some quick math in my head and saw that I was near to averaging my goal LSD pace of 10:00/mile. I’d have to pull off a pretty fast mile 14 to help pad the average but I’ve been liking finishing strong anyway so I went for it. Mile 14 was 9:06!

Splits still all over the place but yay last mile!

Splits still all over the place but yay last mile!

It was a tough run but I was still very pleased that I got it done. Plus, it’s these tough ones that make us mentally stronger, right?

Total mileage for the week: 26

–How do you get yourself into a nice rhythm when you just feel off?
–Do you have a preferred flavor/type of fuel?

I hope everyone has a Happy Monday!! ❀ , helly



32 responses

  1. Great week! The heat is killer right now… it’s slowing be down a lot but we just gotta push through until fall! When I’m feeling off I just tell myself I have to hold on for the first 2 miles and then I’ll be fine. When I’m doing long runs it always takes my body about 2 miles to get into a rhythm and then I can usually finish strong.

  2. Way to push it on your long run. I just started back with the GU’s on the weekend and went for Salted Watermelon – it wasn’t too bad but I forgo to bring my water so I was force to taste it for a while.
    The heat is starting to increase here (not like there) but it makes it harder to run.

    • I haven’t tried Salted watermelon but have friends who like that flavor. And yeah, not having water to down it with makes it tough! I seriously just squeeze half in and gulp water and squeeze the other half in and gulp and go!

  3. WOW. 3:15… I can’t even imagine. I used to get up at 4:20 to run on my treadmill when I was commuting.. but holy moly I can’t fathom being up before then! Best and only fuel I use – espresso love Gu. Hope you’re feeling better and have a fabulous day!

    • I’m a Strawberry Banana and Raspberry Gu girl lol! And yeah, I wake up at crazy o’clock for long runs so that I’m not away from my kids for too long. Sometimes I make it back before they wake and it’s like mommy was there all along πŸ™‚

  4. Major high five for running in such high temperatures!! You are awesome. This is week 1 of half marathon training for me. I have a link-up going today through Wednesday.. you should stop by and share a post!

  5. Great job this week, allergy attack, lady visitor and all! Wow! When I can’t get into a rhythm I try to focus on my music or something other than running. If I know I’m going to have an off day, I’ll bring my phone and take pictures of the pretty things I miss on my speedier days to make the time pass by more quickly!

  6. Ok so hang on. Triple digit heat. Your goddamn period. An ALLERGIC REACTION. A 3:15am wake-up call. (Girl, That’s middle of the night.) And your 14th mile was your fastest. BOOM. *drops iPad*

    You killed it, Helly. Xoxo

  7. The side effects of Benadryl are real haha! One of my dogs has to take it on a daily basis because he has bad allergies and it was recommended by the vet, but if he’s having an extra bad day, the vet said he could have a couple extra and boy, is he wiped out on those days ha. I have to drag him into his crate because he’s so tired by the end of the day!

    On those off days, I just try to stay in the mile I’m in and not think about how many I have left. Even if the pace ends up being not so good, it’s usually better than it would be if I think about how many miles I still have left feeling like doo doo haha. But your last mile!!! That is amazing that you were able to pull off such a fast finish after not feeling the whole entire run, way to kick butt, Helly!

    And I love Honey Stinger Chews! I’ve only experienced with fueling a couple of times, the summer before last, and I liked those.I’ve never used fuel in a race before, so I’m going to try it out for my long runs and then for a half, but I have no idea what to get! What’s your favorite fuel option(s)!?:)

  8. Gu and my stomach just don’t get along! The maltodextrin in them is disastrous for me. I have been doing well fueling with medjool dates! They are my go-to for long runs, and I like that they are a whole food.

  9. I’m so glad i found your blog! I’m training for chicago also, and I’m currently in week 6. This whole week has been off for me and i always tell myself the phrase that marines use: “embrace the suck”! Just acknowledge that it stinks and push through πŸ™‚

  10. I’m so glad i found your blog! I’m training for chicago as well, I’m on week 6 of training though. This whole week has felt off for me, so i always tell myself the phrase that marines use: “embrace the suck” Haha you just acknowledge that it sinks and push through!

    • Love it! Yeah, I definitely don’t try and cover up the suck, I mean, how can I tell myself “You’re not in pain, Helly” when I very much am lol!! Good luck to you and am looking forward to following your journey! πŸ™‚