Chicago Marathon Training: Weeks 5-9

Wow. Have I really finished nine weeks of Chicago Marathon training? It must be a dream. Good thing I’ve been keeping up with all of my training diary entries and taking the occasional frequent running pictures. Otherwise, this blog post would not exist!

As I mentioned in my blog recap here detailing marathon training weeks 1-4, I’ve been following the Hansons Marathon Method which focuses on the concept of “cumulative fatigue.” This plan is structured around 6 days of running with one rest day on Wednesday. On top of this training, I’ve been going to CrossFit (though finding it difficult to have the energy to go as frequently as before) and incorporating JasYoga into the routine.

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My thoughts on the plan after completing 9 weeks?

  • I would say that this plan is not for the beginner. I would recommend it to someone who has a few or at least one marathon under their belt and are ready to push their training to the next level. In comparing this to the Hal Higdon plans that I have done for my previous two full marathons, this plan has more mileage (especially on days immediately leading up to and after the long run), incorporates speedwork, tempo work, and has more focused runs as opposed to run x mileage on x day. The purpose, from my perspective, is not only to finish the marathon but to PR. I have hopes that Chicago will be good to me.
  • Strength training or any other form of cross training will be difficult to fit in BUT it is valuable and should be incorporated into the routine. Since February, I’ve been going to CrossFit 3x/week. The purpose of this was to get in shape for our wedding in May and to transform my body to build more strength. The results I’ve had from doing CrossFit has been tremendous both from a strength and appearance standpoint. On top of this, I highly recommend strength training to all runners. Not only does it push you to a different training threshold, building your strength to push further than you thought possible, but it works out other core muscle groups that you may be lacking by just doing cardio/running. I so believe in cross training. BUT! With the Hansons Marathon Method plan, since your training focuses on extreme fatigue, you’re already fatigued with marathon training itself. It’s been very difficult to continue going to CrossFit 3x/week. I’ve had to scale and adjust down to 2x/week or even 1x/week on some weeks. Do what works for you.
  • The “cumulative fatigue” process works. I was a bit weary when I planned my training and realized how much mileage I’d be putting in. Not just the mileage, but the less rest days and more consecutive running days leading up to the Sunday long run. My body has definitely felt fatigued from the training (and more so from the additional cross training I’ve put it through) but my legs have stayed fresh. Think about it this way: Monday easy run, Tuesday track workout, Wednesday rest day, Thursday tempo, Friday easy run, Saturday easy run, Sunday long run, REPEAT. Umm. Since I’m not hobbling around at all, I think this is a success.
  • Just completed my longest long run so far – 15 miles. And I felt good! Although, I developed a summer cold just the day before so didn’t feel at my best. Despite this, I still hit ~9:15 min/mi which is around the range I had in mind for a slow long run. The fact that it did not completely wipe me out even while being under the weather was good. Thanks LFries for running part of this with me! <—- she is always up for running on a whim, Seattle runners. Hit her up! :)
  • Always ensure that rest days are taken. On Monday, I realized that I had trained every single day from August 1st through August 11th. This included 10 days of running, two sessions of CrossFit, and a yoga session. Rest is essential and since I have Wednesday as my only running day off, doing CrossFit that same day doesn’t equate to rest. Far from it. So, I’ll need to adjust my running schedule to take an additional rest day, or something to accommodate the lack of rest.

Here’s a recap of the training that I completed in weeks 5-9.

Note: race training was not on the normal schedule during weeks 8-9 due to a family emergency.

July 2013

Sunday

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

7/7

7/8

7/9

7/10

7/11

7/12

7/13

Week 5:

24 mi

Run: Easy 5 mi

Boise Trip

Run: Easy 4.6 mi

CrossFit

Run: Easy 4 mi

CrossFit

Run: Easy 4 miles

Run: Easy 6.35 mi

14

15

16

17

18

19

20

Week 6:

29 mi

Run: Easy 5 mi

Run: Easy 5.25 mi

Run: Speed

1 mi WU, 12×400, 1 min rest, 0.25 recovery = 4.87 mi

CrossFit

Ragnar PNW

Actuals: 5.89 mi leg #1, 8.15 leg #2, Total: 14.04 mi

Ragnar PNW

Actuals: 4.58 mi leg #3

21

22

23

24

25

26

27

Week 7:

19.2 mi

JasYoga + GL Walk

Easy 4 mi

Run: Tempo 6.1 mi

CrossFit

Run: Easy 3 mi

Run: Easy 6.1 mi

28

29

30

31

Week 8:

33.3 mi

Run: Easy 6 mi

August 2013

Sunday

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

1

2

3

Week 8:

33.3 mi

Run: Tempo 5.16 mi

CrossFit

Run: Easy 5 mi

Run: Easy 6.1 mi

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

Week 9:

41.64 mi

Run: Long 11 mi

CrossFit

Run: Easy 5 mi

Run: Speed

Actual: 0.5 mi WU, 5 x 1K, 2 min rest, 0.5 mi recovery = 4.84 mi

CrossFit

Run: Tempo 7.15 mi

CrossFit

Run: Easy 6.35 mi

Run: Easy 3 mi + yoga

11

12

13

14

15

16

17

Run: Long 15.3 mi

Here’s a compilation of some random pictures I’ve taken on my runs, running-related, or Oiselle-related during these weeks of training. Enjoy!

My ‘hood:

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JasYoga outdoor session at Green Lake with Rebecca and Lauren.

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Me and Mrs. CEO of JasYoga, Erin. :)

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How gorgeous is Green lake? This is not filtered.

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First track workout — still smiling after 12 x 400 repeats.

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Chugging some delicious Nuun Cherry Limeade. Ready to rock with the caffeine.

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Getting in some plank action.

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Origami girl at the top of the Eastlake Bridge. All about the PEACE.

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Showing off the new Oiselle Flyte Tank. It’s anti-microbial, seamless, and looks great running or wearing out! Lola likes it too.

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Some cool dragonboat racing action that I saw after an early morning run.

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Gotta do the legs up the wall dashboard action.

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Mount Vernon’s Kulshan Trail. Lovely.

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The soon-to-be-released (?) addition to the Oiselle Flyte collection.

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Always be grateful for your loved ones around you.

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Same day as news of the new Oiselle team athletes announcement! Check out the new additions to the team here.

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Nice scenic point with my hubby and pup.

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I swear I found this. It was fate.

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Admiring the new Oiselle Flyte Shorts paired with the Winona Tank in Begonia! My favorite tank. I wear them all the time.

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Could this be a Oiselle Sleepytime advertisement? Joe snapped this as we slept peacefully.

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Another run through the Kulshan Trail.

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Enjoying a Ninkasi beer. Yum!

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Unfiltered sunset:

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With 9 weeks left until Chicago Marathon, I am feeling pretty good! The only thing nagging me is this summer cold that’s left me a bit exhausted coughing all the time.

However, I’ve listened to my body and am taking the necessary rest days. Always do this.

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One thought on “Chicago Marathon Training: Weeks 5-9

  1. I really believe in strength training for all endurance athletes. I think you will be VERY pleasantly surprised at the marathon- you will be SO much stronger for it. And you look great!

    That plan seems really effective! I bet that combined with the strength will give you a great time.

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