January 15, 2018

Getting in Shape for a Half

I feel like I have not had anything worth writing about lately! Running has been on my mind a lot, and I have several drafts of posts about it... but I don't want to bombard my blog with them all at once.

Speaking of running, though, today was Day 1 to start the next 13 weeks of half-marathon training. Funnily enough, it was a rest day, hahaha. So, I did very well! I even enjoyed it ;)

I'm going to be following my First Timer's Half-Marathon Plan. While I am clearly not a first timer, it's been a long time since I've run a half. I walked the Indy Mini in 2017, and I walked-ran the Detroit Free Press International Half in 2015. But the last half that I actually ran was the Santa Hustle Half in December 2014 with my brother. A little over three years ago! Crazy, right?

That race was terrible, because it was when I got my stress fracture that caused me so many problems in 2015. I stupidly refused to rest long enough to let it heal, and running was miserable for the entire year.

Then, in late 2015, I focused on speed instead of distance, with a goal to PR my 10K. After that race in April 2016, I was just burnt out. I didn't want to run long distances anymore, but I also didn't want to focus on speed. I couldn't think of any goals that excited me, so I really had no drive or motivation to run.

In 2017, I finally decided to focus on my mental health, doing what makes me happy. And running was not making me happy, so I quit for... what, 10 months?

Now, in 2018, I feel ready (excited, even) to pick it back up and set some goals. My first goal is to run the Martian Half in April. I have no time goal--I can be slow as molasses for all I care--but I want to be able to run the whole distance.

And, since it's been so long since I've run that distance, I chose to do the beginner plan. I will be running four days a week: Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday. Tuesdays are for speed work (it's very minimal speed work, mainly just for variety); Wednesdays and Fridays are easy runs; and Sundays are for long runs.

Several people have asked if I'm going to do heart rate training again (the 80/20 method I used to PR my 10K). I don't think I'm going to do that, at least not for the first month or so. Right now, I just want to focus on making running a priority again, and getting in the habit of running four days a week. I have no idea what my heart rate is going to be when I run at an easy pace, but I plan to run at a VERY easy pace, so hopefully it will fall into the range I'd like anyway.

I'll likely be doing a lot of my runs on the treadmill. The roads here in the neighborhoods are terrible! There is a very thick layer of ice across the road, topped with about an inch and a half of snow. The main roads are better, but the shoulders aren't clear, so it's not very safe.

Also, I'm excited to get some use out of the new treadmill!

The kids and I took Joey for a walk around the neighborhood tonight, and the boys had a blast sliding on the ice. I nearly fell and broke my neck several times; it didn't help that Joey was dragging me along with his leash! Actually, he saved me from one slip, when I started to go down backwards. He pulled forward on his leash, and I was able to upright myself. The last thing I need is to get injured before I even start training for the half!

The weather has been really crazy for the last month or so. It went from being SUPER cold (single digits) to being rather warm (40 degrees). There have been a couple of incidents on the lake because of it. Last week, a man was riding a four-wheeler on the ice when the ice broke and he went under. The conditions were too dangerous for a rescue attempt (and now, tragically, a body recovery).

Just a few days later, there were several fishermen who were standing on the ice when it broke and took them out farther into the lake (they were still on top of the ice, but they were on a large section of it that was drifting outward). Thankfully, they were able to be rescued by helicopter.

Anyway, I'm still hopeful that we'll have a mild winter--so far it's not looking good. I'm grateful to have a treadmill to train on! I'm curious how tomorrow's "speed" work will go ;)



  1. I’m with you...the weather has been nuts this winter thus far!!!! You bombard this blog with whatever is on your mind!! If that is running every post than that’s fine...we will still read!!! And even if someone isn’t a runner it could still touch them and spark something! But ultimately you wrote what is in your heart!!!

    Sooooo...are you dressing as a Martian for your Martian run????? Happy training!!!

  2. I am registered to run the Yosemite National Park 1/2 in May and I entered the drawing for the NYC marathon in November! I guess I should maybe do something? Lol I only did 4 training runs for the Paris marathon last year (proof you can do anything with determination even if the course closes LOL) but I’d prefer to do better than that!

  3. Hi Katie - I've been away from your blog for a little while but I wanted to come back and read about your renewed interest in running. It's easy to understand why you are loving being a 'beginner' again, with no pressure! Glad that you got the treadmill. Looking forward to following your journey back into running.


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