Chicago Marathon Training Week 3

Sunday, June 21: Yoga.
I had no idea that it was International Yoga Day until way after I finished doing yoga, but I’m still more than happy to pretend like I scheduled this on purpose 😛 I did the 45 minute Advanced Yoga from the NTC app (not because I’m so advanced, but because it’s the only yoga practice they have on the app that lasts more than 15 minutes). I definitely can’t do everything, but I’ve found it to be a good way to both stretch and work on strength.

Monday, June 22: Strength/HIIT.
Monday was INSANELY humid, and I was very happy I had scheduled a strength/HIIT workout for that day instead of a run. I followed The Heartbreaker workout on the NTC app (Get Strong: Advanced, in case you use the app and want to find that workout), which is a 30 minute workout featuring a five minute warmup, five circuits of squats + arm curls, froggers (kind of like burpees, but without jumping up), single leg deadlifts, crossover lunges with bicep curls, and v-ups, and a five minute stretching cooldown. I really like this workout, though I honestly should probably bump up my weights, since my five pound dumbbells don’t challenge me at all with these moves.

Tuesday, June 23: Dance.
We started a new session on Tuesday, but the combo my hip hop teacher taught on Tuesday was one he taught us a few months ago as well, so it was more review for me than anything. However, he seemed very enthusiastic about how quickly everyone else picked things up, which makes me hopeful that we’ll have some tough choreography this session. The first class of breakdance each session basically involves my friends and I doing whatever we want to do while my teacher works on foundational moves with the new kids, so I practiced posing on my other hand and worked a little on my headstands and coffee grinders.

Wednesday, June 24: 4 miles in 41:39 for a 10:24 pace.
It really wasn’t *unbearably* hot and humid on this run (though I certainly would not label it “comfortable” either), but my anxiety was not cooperating on Wednesday, so I wanted to take things very, very easy and focus on my breathing more than anything in an attempt to calm down. It worked fairly well, I think, at least in the sense that I felt a lot better as the night wore on. I’ve often used running to keep my anxiety at bay, but I’ve rarely actually had anxiety strike right before I was about to go out for a run. This run definitely became more of a mental exercise than a physical exercise as a result.

Thursday, June 25: 3 miles in 29:01 for a 9:39 pace (one mile warmup, four .25-mile intervals [.25 hard, .25 recover])
My first interval workout of marathon training! Fortunately the weather cooperated, making this slightly less miserable than it could have been. I don’t know if this is really the “right” way to run intervals, but it’s the only way I’ve done it in the past, so I’ll stick with this for now. If it feels ineffective, too easy, too challenging, or otherwise not worth it, I’ll adjust accordingly.

Friday, June 26: Rest.

Saturday, June 27: 5.3 miles in 55:23 for a 10:26 pace.
Yay shortest run of marathon training! This Saturday’s weather reminded me a lot of last Saturday’s in that it was quite chilly at the beginning but got much warmer much faster than I anticipated. Our site coordinator said, “Welcome to CARA’s winter marathon training program,” at the beginning of the run, which is not the first time he’s cracked that joke on a cold summer morning, but I still find it hilarious. The run itself was fine, but the highlight, as it always is on five mile week, was our post-run brunch.


We went to Kanela at Clark and Belmont, per custom, and since one particular member of a running group who has a bit of a healthy eating reputation amongst us was not there, a fair number of us took that as license to order whatever we damn well pleased. For me, that looked like coco crisp chocolate pancakes.


Three enormous chocolate chip pancakes drizzled with chocolate and white chocolate syrups, topped with some rice krispie/chocolate syrup combination, with a side of whipped cream topped with sprinkles. Obviously running all of five miles justified destroying this.


It did almost defeat me, to be fair, but after taking a moment to regroup, I conquered my breakfast like. a. champ. and didn’t even feel sick afterwards. Sorry not sorry.

I’m still struggling a bit on the PT front, and this week did NOT do well with logging eight hours of sleep each night, either. In fact, I don’t know if I got eight hours of sleep any night this past week. With my best friend out of town for two months and a self-imposed moratorium on online dating for the next few weeks (I’ve gone out with way too many boys on way too many nights on way too many first dates that didn’t turn into second dates over the last three weeks, and going out after work is NOT a good way to make sure you’re home in time to go to bed early. It’s been fun, sometimes [also very not-fun sometimes], but it’s also been physically and emotionally exhausting, and I need a break), I should have substantially less of a social life, which hopefully will make sleepytime easier to come by. In regards to PT, I recently downloaded a timing app to my computer, which interrupts me with a “GET UP” message every 58 minutes. When this happens, I get up, as instructed, and have been using my “up time” to try to do at least something PT-related, usually single leg squats or leg raises to get my hips working. It’s not everything, but I figure/hope that something is better than nothing.

4 thoughts on “Chicago Marathon Training Week 3

  1. OKAY THOSE PANCAKES. Add that to the list of places I’m going if/WHEN I visit Chicago (which will hopefully be this fall- we’re talking about making a trip there just because). Proud of you for finishing them. I would have been right there beside you licking my own plate haha

    Side note- I really need to try out this NTC app. So many people use it but I’ve never given it a shot. I should start doing the ab workouts. I’ve heard they’re insanely good.

    • Hahaha true life: I thought of you and some of the breakfasts you’ve posted about when I ordered/took a picture of those pancakes. Great minds, obviously 😉 Also, I love this “when I come to Chicago” talk. Let’s make that happen, because I would be OVER. THE. MOON. 😀 😀 😀 😀

      I’ve been using the NTC app since last December, and I’ve really liked it. They have SO many workouts, and while some of them are tough/impossible for me to do because I don’t have the right equipment, I’ve still found plenty that I can do with what I have. I highly recommend it! Especially since it’s free, you really have nothing to lose.

  2. I’m definitely going to start taking after you and logging my marathon training each week. I think it will hold me more accountable to not skipping runs 😉 how do I get invited to this post-CARA brunch club? Am I eligible? Do I have to be interviewed? Is there hazing?

    Also dating is exhausting. I don’t blame you one bit. Take a breather 🙂

    • They’re not the most exciting posts, but for me personally I’ve found it to be SO helpful to have a record of what I’ve done in the past, and to take the time to reflect on how training went for the week.

      All are welcome to post-CARA brunch! You just have to be a 10:30 Awesome 🙂 (Though I think lots of other groups do brunch as well.) We don’t do it every week, but the weeks we do it are my fave!

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