Hot Runs and Half Effort

I know, I know. Friday posts two weeks in a row? Don’t get too used to it — I want to devote all of tomorrow’s post to my BTN Big 10K recap, so your weekly half marathon update is coming a day early this time.

On Monday, I headed out for a four-miler as soon as I got home from work. It was pretty toasty on Monday: the heat index was 100 when I left for my run. Oof. While I won’t say I was thrilled to run in that kind of heat, I also had a much better attitude about it than the last time I dealt with insane heat business. As hokey as it sounds, the Runner’s World article I read about training in heat completely changed my attitude on hot runs. I don’t necessarily want to run in hot weather, but knowing that it’ll make cooler weather runs better gives me a much better attitude about the whole situation.

Anyway, I think I was the only runner in Chicago who saw the 100 degree index and thought it would still be a good idea to go for an afternoon run. I could not believe how few runners I encountered! I saw a decent number of bikers, but I’d be surprised if I saw more than 15 other runners during my four miles, which is not the norm at all. Maybe everyone ran Rock ‘n’ Roll on Sunday? I don’t know, but it was really weird and kind of made me feel like that awkward loner at a party…except the party wasn’t happening haha.

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Regardless, I had a really solid, consistent run. 10:30 average pace with all four of my mile times falling between 10:29 and 10:39 even when it feels like 100 outside? Yes please.

On Tuesday my volleyball team took to the sand again for our second game of the season. I’m proud to announce that we actually won a set this time around, so we no longer have a goose egg in our record. We did lose the second two sets BUT our  loss in the second set really shouldn’t count. You’re supposed to have a two-point lead to win, and the other team “beat” us 21-20. That’s not to say we necessarily would’ve won, but it could’ve happened. The most amusing aspect of the game to me was how the team members who missed our first game were all, “Guys. This is bad. We need to be better,” while those of us who were there last week were like, “Right on! We actually put up a fight this time!” Haha.

Still worst in the league, mind you, but making progress!

As it turns out, Monday’s heat was nothing compared to Wednesday’s. Not only was it actually 99 degrees instead of simply feeling like 99 degrees (the heat index Wednesday was closer to 104), but the sun was out as well. Double oof. I had a 4.5 mile run on my calendar (technically I had a 5 mile run on my “official” calendar, but I didn’t want to jump into five miles after having only run two weekday four milers), but as soon as I got outside I had a feeling I wouldn’t make it the whole way. I really wanted to run the full 4.5, but I promised myself I’d listen to my body and kind of take the run as it went.

Originally, I planned on running 1.25 miles in one direction, turning around, and then running one additional mile beyond my starting point. As I ran, I decided I’d rather do 1.5 in one direction, turn around, and then only go .75 miles past the my starting point. Eventually, that turned into “run 1.5 miles in one direction and then about .5 miles back before walking to the starting point and calling it a day.” Sigh.

Could I have run the full 4.5 miles? Possibly. Like I said, it was hotter than blazes, so it would’ve been really tough. Ultimately, I decided to quit running so early because of the BTN Big 10K tomorrow. My legs hadn’t felt great after Monday’s run and my hip had been bothering me all day on Wednesday, so I decided that instead of pushing myself too far on a training run, it’d be better to save my legs for Saturday. This, of course, is not to suggest that I have any wild expectations for running a fast race on Saturday, but rather that I want to be able to run on Saturday.

Cross training, unfortunately, got kicked off the schedule this week. Boo. Between regular work and an event we had yesterday, I was out of my apartment working from about 7:30 a.m. until 9 p.m. Since our event was outside and it was Florida humid here yesterday, my only priorities after arriving home were 1) showering in the coldest water possible and 2) sleeping.

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Part of me feels like I’m not taking this half marathon training seriously enough. I feel like I keep making excuses for putting in half-effort workouts, shortening workouts, or skipping workouts all together. Granted, most of what I skip/shorten is cross training rather than running, but still. It was one thing when I was doing this at the beginning of my training. I’m more than halfway through the schedule now. I have about six weeks until the race. Now is probably not the time to cheat myself on training.

If you’ve run a half marathon before, how much effort did you put into cross training?
How do you shake workout regrets? Though it may not sound this way, I think I’m doing a lot better with this than I was a month or so ago.

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6 thoughts on “Hot Runs and Half Effort

  1. cross training is a pretty big deal to me, but that’s more because all my workouts were “cross training” before I got into running, so I still love my strength training workouts and don’t want to sacrifice them too much for my race training. It’s really hard to get it all in, don’t get down on yourself!

  2. Now would probably not be a good time to admit to disliking running.
    But, oddly, my biigest workout regret is that I no longer can run. Or at leasted not supposed to. Running is great for the intensity in the time, but it also is hard on the knees.

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