Thursday started off in an unexpected way...SNOW! We got over a foot of snow by Friday evening (thankfully it's almost all melted as of tonight).
It was not fun to clean off my car again, have freezing fingers since I had put away all my winter essentials, and wear boots instead of cute spring shoes to work.
Since it was so cold out, I took my easy 4-mile run on the treadmill at a super conservative pace. When it gets this close to race day (3 WEEKS!), I try to take my easy runs slower than I may usually to recover and try to get more sleep. I was also still pretty sore from my speed workout on Tuesday & strength training session Wednesday morning- lots of stretching & foam rolling for me post-run!
I started carbo-loading for my 20-mile run on Thursday night with a delicious pizza from Against the Grain Gourmet (the pesto one is AMAZING)
Friday was Alex's birthday (HAPPY BIRTHDAY BAE)! So, I started our morning with some cinnamon rolls & bacon (best of both sweet & salty worlds). We met-up for a lunch date at our favorite lunch spot in Steamboat- Winona's (seriously the most amazing Buffalo Chicken Salad EVER) and a walk with Stella.
The Cherry Blossoms with the snow and blue skies made for a perfect backdrop on our walk! I made my Meditteranean Pasta Dish for dinner & a homemade cookie skillet (topped with vanilla ice cream) for Bday dessert! YUM! I was in bed by 9 and ready to wake up at 4:45 to tackle my last 20 mile training run!
I like to start out the mornings of my longer runs with Nuun Energy to give me that extra caffeine boost (along with the cup of coffee I have). I also had a half of a banana and some oatmeal before starting my run by 5:45. It was still cold when I started (32 degrees) and overcast. I planned to mix-up my run with atleast half outside and the remaining middle miles on the treadmill to utilize the decline (to mimic the Downhill at Revel Rockies) at goal marathon pace.
My plan for this run included:
- 7 miles outside at an easy pace (10:00min/mi)
- actual: 7 miles outside at 9:23 min/mi pace
- 10 miles treadmill at goal marathon pace (9:05-9:09min/mi) varying decline (-1% to -3%)
- actual: 10 miles at 9:00min/mi ; -1% 25 minutes ; -2% 25 minutes ; -3% 25 minutes ; remaining 15 minutes spent climbing the ladder up from -3 to -1 % (each 5 minute intervals)
- 3-5 miles outside at an easy cool-down pace (10:00 min/mi)
- actual: 4.01 miles at 9:20 min/mi
TOTAL: 21.01 miles at 9:10 min/mi pace
Overall, this run felt so strong and I have no doubt that I could've pushed through the last five miles at just above goal marathon pace. I finished it just a hare off my goal marathon pace and really feel like finishing in under 4 hours is definitely within reach at this race!
The feeling that you get when you really nail a workout and finish strong is like nothing else.
I finished the week with 39.01 miles and spent the rest of Saturday napping, recovery with my favorite fuels and foods, grocery shopping, and doing an endless amount of laundry (I honestly feel like it never ends). When I have a family- I can't even imagine when I'll have time to run with the heaps of laundry there will surely be!
Happy Saturday friends! Off to enjoy some dessert and to bed early :)