living in the now

Still rambling about running. Sometimes other things.

Filtering by Tag: long runs

About that next long run ...

These past few summers have been, well, pretty bad when it comes to running.

It’s gone a little like this:

2016: Injured

2017: Injured

2018: I got my long run back to 7 miles in July, but was miserable after. Instead of ramping up my mileage, I pretty much got stuck in a rut and didn’t run anything longer than 3-4 miles until later in the year.

That leads me to what should happen this coming Saturday: A run longer than 7 miles.

I ran 7 miles this weekend and didn’t feel horrible in the heat and humidity. I simply slowed to a pace that was incredibly slow and focused on getting it done. I also didn’t feel bad the rest of the day as I got rehydrated.

Summer running feels new again to me - it used to just be a thing I complained about, but now I’m looking forward to the challenges it brings.

While I hit a lot of my “longest since” milestones this past winter, my “longest since” marks this summer feel like they’re more important. After all, the last time I ran 10 miles or more in the heat was the summer of 2012.

I’ve got plans to build my long runs back up gradually this summer to distances that I admittedly struggled with in the winter and early spring … and then go even farther.

My body feels much more ready this time around …

Crossing off a big goal

It's been a mostly uneventful few weeks with my 26 goals to finishing another marathon, so I was due to finally cross off the next one that's really important to me -- running for an hour nonstop. 

As training for the Blue Ridge Marathon kicked off this week, my first long run called for 6 miles -- the perfect opportunity to just go ahead and run for an hour to stretch the distance a tiny bit farther. 

As I hit an hour and then another minute, I really wanted to keep going. It's the first time I've felt like that in a while, so I really can't wait to run MUCH more in the next four months.

Also late last month, I crossed off an important nutrition-related goal of not eating any potato chips for a month. That streak has continued into December.  

I'm really pleased with where things are right now with everything. Running, eating a little better and no pains. LET'S DO THIS! 

  1. DONE - OCT. 23: Run 3 miles non stop
  2. DONE - NOV. 3: Run 3 miles at a pace under 10 minutes a mile
  3. DONE - OCT. 30Run 4 miles nonstop
  4. DONE - DEC. 10: Run for an hour nonstop
  5. Run a 5k race under an 8-minute mile pace
  6. Run a 10k at under an 8-minute mile pace
  7. Run a half marathon
  8. Run hill repeats
  9. DONE - OCT 8Run in the rain again
  10. Run on a trail that's new to me (or one I haven't run in a year+)
  11. Sign up/run in a race that's new to me
  12. Do a track workout
  13. DONE - NOV. 3: Do a progressive run
  14. Run 100 miles in a month (this has changed from my original goal of riding my bike 100+ miles; the running goal is something more important to me right now)
  15. DONE in late October/November: Go a month without potato chips 
  16. Eat a salad every day at work for 2 straight weeks
  17. Lose 5 pounds
  18. Lose 10 pounds
  19. Lose 15 pounds
  20. Lift weights twice a week for 4 straight weeks
  21. Hold a plank for 2 minutes straight
  22. Hold a plank for 3 minutes
  23. Do 25 consecutive push-ups
  24. Do 50 consecutive push-ups
  25. Blog about my progress at least once a week for 4 straight weeks
  26. Run a marathon

Disclaimer: I am receiving a free race entry to the Blue Ridge Marathon as an "official blogger" for the race. for more information about the race in Roanoke, Virginia, and use code BRMFRIENDS to get 15% off. 

Three Things Thursday: October goals

A day after I wrote about my somewhat successful September, I was ready to write down my goals for October. I vowed to set realistic goals.

Then my sons both got sick, and my realistic goals were made even more realistic as I knew that life was going to immediately going to impact running. Then I didn't feel so well either, which led me to taking a few Halls and getting some wrapper inspiration.

I want to end the year on a high note with a strong third quarter, but I'm keeping things tame as we creep into fall. My goals this month are simple and achievable, but challenging enough to keep me focused and do bigger things in November. 

1. Increase my long run to 8 miles. I was initially going to put 10 miles, but I am running the Wicked 10K at the end of the month in Virginia Beach. 8 is more realistic without over-doing it. It's also only a little more than a mile off my current "long" run distance. 

This summer I focused on my long runs being an hour or 6 miles -- whichever felt right. It's a good time and distance to not let myself get completely off track, and long enough that increasing my distance wouldn't be a big deal. 

2. Run at least 1 mile in 7:30. I'm pulling this number out of nowhere. I've run miles faster than that this year, but I've done very little in the way of speedwork since the end of July. This will force me to do some speedwork as running "fast" by myself is never an easy task. 

3. Cross train twice a week. This doesn't mean it has to be a full-on crossing training workout, but doing something (planks or push-ups or jumping jacks ... anything for a few minutes) other than running. A sore shoulder that I dealt with this summer has stopped bothering me, so I'm out of excuses. 


3 goals set, 3 goals met.

In June and July I fell so short of so many goals that I was setting for myself that I knew things had to change in August. I didn't document things this month as much as I thought I would, but that doesn't mean things weren't going well. In fact, I'm ending August very happy. It wasn't perfect, but it wasn't a disaster. I set my mind to 3 goals and I hit every single one. I immediately want to talk about how I could have done even more, but I think that's just a natural thing when actually hitting every goal. Here's a look at how they all played out.

1,000 push-ups Enlisting the help of friends on Facebook and a shared document was key to keeping me focused on this. There were times in the month that I thought my arms were going to fall off, but now that it's done, I'm ready to do it again in September with more variety. I feel stronger and I can see the difference in the mirror.

All told I did 1,039 push-ups, hitting 1,000 with a couple of days to spare. The 10 of us who did the challenge did more than 10,500 total push-ups, with a few people needing to log the final few days. The women pretty much kicked everyone's asses, but that's one of the many fun aspects of this.

10 mile run, Richmond, August 2013

10 miles for a long run It's weird to have such low running miles for a month (61), but have my long run re-established at 10 miles (officially 10.1).

I normally wouldn't recommend this approach, but having so many miles on my feet from the past few years and being injury free for a while now, it was worth the risk to increase my long run to double digits.

I knocked that out on Aug. 24, so that feels like a nice bonus to not have waited until the last possible day. Plus the weather was amazing that day for August.

Bike more than I run I did 10 miles this morning to get to 67 for the month, beating out running by 6 miles. By running less in the past two months, I really got an urge to start running more in the second half of this month, and I debated on whether to drop this goal. After thinking about it the past couple of days I opted to forgo a long run today and close it out on the bike to mark all of these goals as DONE.

On to September I have a few goals in mind for next month, but with a new baby coming SOMETIME during the month, I'm not quite sure yet how much I want to push myself. I had such a good time hitting August's goals, that September may carry a similar theme.