Week 13 of training for the Philly Marathon was a good eye opener. For the most part it was an easy week capped off with a half marathon, which was not easy.
My approach to training for the next week is changing a bit. I’ve been doing some preventative work with my physical therapist over at Finish Line PT. So far I’ve been able to avoid injury, but I’m not 100% in the clear.
My lazy left leg basically takes a nap during every long run, which leaves my type A right leg left to do all the work. As you can imagine, my right leg is getting pretty grumpy and tired from carrying the load. It’s been sending me signals all season that it’s unhappy with this situation, so I’ve been working on managing this imbalance.
For the next few weeks I’m taking it one step further and cutting down to three runs a week and including other forms of cardio to make up for the missed runs. My right leg needs more time to recovery between runs. My left leg needs more strength work and needs to learn to do it’s fair share of the work. This means I’m going to do very little strength work on my right side and put all my attention towards waking up my left leg.
The key workout of the week was done at Grete’s Great Gallop. A half marathon in Central Park. It’s the exact same course as the More/Shape Magazine Half Marathon. The goal for the run was to run at marathon effort level, not pace. Marathon effort/pace runs are difficult, but especially challenging on the rolling hills of Central Park. The rolling hills also mean that my mile splits were bit all over the place.
The race was a great chance to practice race day logistics and learn what I need to improve upon. Mostly, I need to work on my race eve food choices and hydrating during the race. I also ran a slight positive split, which by now you know is NOT the goal! Running and drinking water from a cup did not go well, so I need to decide if I want to carry a water bottle or stop for a few seconds to drink water. It feels really free to run without a water bottle attached to my hand, but feeling hydrated might be worth the annoyance.
I have lots of running left to do in this training cycle! I’m excited to see how it goes.