Sunday, September 27, 2015

Training and Drop Back Weeks

I feel like this week will be a turning point for me.

I am linking up today with two wonderful ladies HoHoRuns and Misssippipiddlin.com to share my story. 
Join in the fun! Link up and share your week. Check out the etiquette here



There is always a fear, I am going to hit that wall...my breaking point...and end up in a fractured state again. It has been about 8 months since I was diagnosed with a tibial stress fracture, and I would love to leave it behind me, but the fact is I can still feel that spot. It is a very specific pinch, it doesn't usually linger, like it did when I first returned to running, but intermittently I feel it, especially this week. 

My legs were worn out by Friday, I took the whole weekend off running. It has been rainy here since Friday, so it was pretty easy to sleep in some :) 


Monday a.m.10K run, walked a mile, ran 1 more mile
Monday p.m.Cycling 6.55 mi legs lifts & lots of stretching
Tuesday p.m.Treadmill warm up & 75 min. upper body weight training
Wednesday a.m.Bus loop speed work 4.6 mi & stretching
Thursday a.m.4.1 mi run
Thursday p.m.Cycling 6.4 mi & 50 min. weight training back and core
Friday a.m.8 mi run, 1.50 mi walk & stretching
Saturday a.m.Treadmill incline walk 2 mi & 70 min. weight training legs & upper
Sunday Rest! 

   Bus loop speed work was fun for hump day (sorry I shared this last post) 
   My Thursday run wasn't so bad 
   Friday - the unicorns and rainbows left me...struggle from step one. I wanted to quit so many times on this run, but I made it to my  goal. 





My new Ghost 8's are feeling pretty good, my Brooks Ghost 7 had 350 miles on them and the tread was looking thin...trying to stay on top of replacing the shoes! 

Drop back weeks

Run Buddy and I joined the half marathon training team at a novice level. I was happy to add slowly to my long runs, however, the weekly mileage was so low, I wasn't that excited about following the whole plan.
The plan started with mileage at 12, 13, 14, 15, drop back 13,16, 18, etc...
Twenty four miles is the highest mileage week on our plan. The peak is two weeks out from race day.


Since I broke free from my boot, I've been running 3 or 4 days a week, but typically every other day. Every so often I would run two days in a row, but it wasn't my regular practice. It was enough running to keep me happy, but I never felt like I was building much endurance. 

I felt it was important to make the shift to running more back to back days, to get my legs used to pushing through tired again.  I tossed and turned at night wondering if I should go with the novice build up...but you know, I love running and dropping back to 12, 13 miles a week was not that appealing.  I posted last week my training mileage has hovered between 18 to 22 miles. Obviously, my love of running won out over good sense.  I basically did my own thing during the week, and stuck with a slow build for long runs. 


Week 1 - 20.75
Week 2 - 20.30
Week 3 - 20
Week 4 - 24.70
Week 5 - 19
Week 6 - 18.95
Week 7 - 22
Week 8 - 23.94 (that drives me crazy)
Week 9 - in progress :) 

This was the first week I experienced so much fatigue and soreness. Honestly, it was easy to take this weekend off. 

This upcoming week my plan is a drop back week. 

Runs - 3, 4, 3 and 5 miles for the "long run". Just 15 miles for the whole week...

I am feeling I should embrace it, but I really don't want to...

Normally, I would add more miles to my daily runs. Embracing the drop back means breaking my 10K streak...18 weeks strong :(  Seriously, it's going to hurt my  heart a little to do it...

I also have a personal goal of a 1,000 miles for this year. I am behind of course, because I had about 6 weeks off running, so it is a really hard decision to drop my mileage. 

Sometimes I scratch my head and wonder, is 15 miles really so much less impact on my legs than 20 miles for the week? 

What do you think? 
Break the 10K streak? Follow the plan for once? What would you do? 
Do you embrace drop back weeks? 
Do you love sleeping in on rainy days? 

33 comments:

  1. Sounds like a good week to me, my legs would have been tired too! Your body knows when it needs to rest and we should not feel guilty about it! :)

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    1. SO true! Sometimes my body has a way of demanding it lol

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  2. Great week of training! I would listen to my body. If you're feeling sore and sluggish, it might be a good idea to embrace a cut back week. You could always try to continue your 10K streak and decide then how you feel.

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    1. It is so rainy and muggy here this may be a very easy decision!

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  3. As I sit here with a foot that is bothering me, I really shouldn't say anything! LOL. I certainly wouldn't worry about your 1000 miles goal. Focus instead on what will get you the results you want. If that means rest, don't feel bad about resting. Running tired or running just to get a number isn't going to do you any favors. (I'm preaching to the choir here.) In this training cycle, the drop back weeks felt harder because I think I was just so tired. Thanks for linking up with us today!

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    1. I hope your foot feels better Holly! I have been feeling a lot of different niggles the past few days, I think dropping back is going to feel easier than anticipated.
      I would love to match my mileage from last year, but you are right in the end what does it matter...

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  4. My weekly mileage never got to where I would have liked it this training cycle, but I still feeling really good. Or I did until something went on in my inner thigh when I went to sleep sat night!

    Anyhoo, it's such an individual thing. I think 20-24 miles per week seems to be my sweet spot, and over that things seem to go sideways. But that's just me!

    I have a plan, but I added or subtracted to it all summer long. Most important thing is to listen to your body!

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    1. The aches and pains really get to me sometimes, it is just annoying.
      For a very long time I ran 20 miles a week and was very happy(before injury). I am still trying to figure out that sweet spot now, honestly it seems to be about 18 miles now.

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  5. Great week Karen! Personally I'm all about slow buildup and less miles. When I run my best I run only 3x/week. Definitely listen to your body and embrace that cutback....it's part of training.

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    1. I will keep that tucked away for future reference. I may have missed a good chance to slowly build up. I am taking the cut back this week, the weather is cruddy it is making is easier lol

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  6. I say listen to your body! Embrace the cut back week. :)

    Rainy days make me blue and I do want to sleep all day!

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    1. I usually don't mind a rainy day here and there, but we have had rain since Friday, it is starting to give me the blues. It is hot sticky rain too :( Boooo
      I am chilling this week :)

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  7. I think you're doing great. I'd let the streak go and listen to your body.

    I've had 2 stress fractures, in my feet, and occasionally they remind me that they were once broken there....

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    1. I think the streak is over lol
      Did you have them in the same foot? That special pinch I feel scares me. Others have told they felt their spot a long time after, I just wish I knew for sure it wasn't a problem starting! It messes with me for sure.

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    2. I didn't have them in the same foot! One in the right, one in the left. What can I say?

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  8. I get to thinking am I training right, I've never run a marathon before and I really shouldn't be trying to come up with my own plan. But my excuse is going to be, I hope I will be smart enough to know my body and the signs it gives me. I may regret it but I'm going to stick with running 3 days a week, 2 days strength training and build on my long run. You ultimately are going to have to decide what is right for Karen, no one else, make your decision on your streak if you can do it great if you can't so be it. :)

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    1. You are smart enough to build your plan :)
      I am having a time with the weather this week so it is going to be a light week for me :) I need it...sometimes it is just hard to admit it.

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  9. Listen to your body! It didn't seem to like running those back to back days M-F, so maybe you need every other day, and every two days, every once in awhile, like you were doing!

    If a 10K doesn't make you feel sore, I'd still run it, but cut miles else where. Seems you need the cut back week!

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    1. I agree, i do need the cut back.
      Last week was too many days to close together for sure, I am better with two days running, a break, etc...
      Sometimes scheduling and other things make it hard, moving forward I would probably skip a run now instead of too many days in a row...live and learn :)

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  10. I try to run by feel. I don't follow a plan and just try to get out there and run. On the weekend, I increase my mileage each week by 1 mile until I get to 12 and then taper.

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    1. I love your free style :)
      Since I don't race often, I do get to enjoy running whatever feels good, but i felt I needed plan since it has been so long since I ran a race...I do not follow it well though lol

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  11. Oh gosh... I hate to see your 10K streak break but you need to do what feels good for you so no injuries happen.
    Love your new shoes!

    Hey - do you like that Garmin watch? I need a new one - my Nike GPS Sports watch doesn't hold a charge well anymore.

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    1. I think my 10K streak is over :(
      Thank you, the new shoes are feeling pretty good. I do love the Forerunner 110 :)

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  12. It is hard to break streaks but if your body is feeling tired it is so important not to fight it! Maybe on your 5 mile day if you really want to keep the streak alive you could go super easy, but in the end it's your judgement call! I do embrace cut back weeks.

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    1. The weather has made it quite challenging this week,so I think my streak is over...but you are right on my 5 mile run who knows, maybe I will feel great :)

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  13. I always listen to my body. I prefer to keep on running, even if it means shorter distance or fewer miles, rather than push myself to injury. Been there, done that, and recovery is LOOOONNNGGG.

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    1. Mee too with the injury, been there done that, and the sad part is I didn't feel like I was pushing myself, I just got injured :( Recovery is miserable. I don't want to go there again for sure.

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  14. I can only imagine how it's been coming back from your injury, that's in a bad spot for sure!
    I'd say, use your injury/pain to be your guide. It's a hard thing to do, to listen to our bodies, but it's also the smartest thing we can do. So if your body says it's time to break the streak, then break it. If it's responding well to it, then keep it going.
    Or if you need a change of pace, start working on a new type of streak:)
    Good luck with whatever you decide is best!!!

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    1. I know you understand the coming back process, it is touchy!
      I REALLY like that idea, start a new streak, I need to think about that ;)

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  15. Great wk of training. I have a hard time cutting back when I should before races as well. Love the sneakers. I finally got a pair of Brooks this mth and I love them. Thy are the Launch. Lightweight neutral shoe. I never found that the ghost work for me. Glad they are working out for you.

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    1. I have not tried the Launch, but i saw the pretty green ones in the store ;) Great color!
      The weather (rainy) made it a little easier to take the cut back and enjoy it this week.

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  16. I would listen to your body. It is hard to cut back, but rest is a crucial part of training. I LOVE sleeping in on ANY day (doesn't happen), but especially rainy days. I embrace cut back weeks. I have one next week :)
    For years I ran half marathons with my longest run being 9 miles...

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    1. I am sleeper too Cheryl :)
      I am embracing the rest this week. Interesting just 9 miles. I ran 10 miles before my first half, this time it'll be 12. I do think 9 is plenty to keep you in half shape though :)

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