Listen to the Ali on the Run Show on iTunes!
- July 18, 2017 by AliAli on the Run Show Episode 38: I'm Back!
- June 20, 2017 by AliAn Update on the Crohn's Situation + Things I'm Loving Right Now
- June 15, 2017 by AliAli on the Run Show Episode 37: Lindsey Hein, Host of the I'll Have Another Podcast
- June 13, 2017 by AliAli on the Run Show Episode 36: My Least Favorite Motivational Phrases
- June 9, 2017 by Ali#YOLOCELINE2017
- October 26, 2012 by AliPlease Let Me Make Your Day (That Means A Giveaway!)
- June 15, 2012 by AliMonday. 9 AM. Get Sweaty. (And For Now: A Giveaway!)
- August 10, 2012 by AliTake My Sweat (It's A Giveaway & It's Not Gross)
- May 25, 2012 by AliDo You Want Free Sneakers? (Translation: A Giveaway!)
- July 9, 2013 by AliEmbrace The Sweat (An "I Heart Sweat" Shirt Giveaway!)
Happy Monday and Happy 16 Weeks Until the New York City Marathon!
Today officially kicks off New York City Marathon training for me. I like a 16-week plan because it’s not too long, but it still allows room for a little flexibility. I haven’t run a marathon in almost two years (I ran NYC in 2014, then took a break from the 26.2-mile distance last year), and I think maybe that’s a good thing. My body doesn’t quite remember the pain the marathon can inflict, and I’m excited to increase my mileage and feel that post-long run excitement, exhaustion, pride, and hunger.
Since this was once a running blog, I’m thinking about doing weekly training recaps here. I’ve never done these, but I think it’ll be nice to reflect on my progress each week, and I enjoy reading other peoples’ recaps. So if you’re into that, cool! If not, I’ll probably post them on Sunday nights or Monday mornings, so go ahead and proceed directly to Fridays With Ellie.
I won’t make a more specific race plan or time goal until much later in the training game, but I do already know that I want to go sub-3:50. My marathon PR is from 2012, when I ran the Manchester City Marathon in 3:51:20. I’d like to break that — and then some — and I think I can do it. I want to do it. So right now, my goal is 3:49:59, but hopefully with a few months of training, I can either be more ambitious or more realistic or somewhere in between.
This will be my sixth marathon, and I’m in a place where I feel comfortable with my knowledge of running and training, but also want a rough guide and something to keep me accountable and in line. So I’m using New York Road Runners’ Virtual Trainer as a template, but I plan to tweak it a little. My weekly schedule will look something like this…
Monday: Rest or yoga
Tuesday: Track Tuesday! Interval work on the track or the Bridle Path. Friends make you faster!
Wednesday: Easy run or November Project
Thursday: Tempo Thursday! I haven’t done a tempo run in, oh, years? I need to get comfortable doing longer speed workouts (as opposed to just doing 400m repeats on the track), and this will be my scary, time-to-get-uncomfortable day. I’ll also probably work some hills in on these days. (So one week I’ll do a tempo, the next week a hill workout.)
Friday: Bike, yoga, spin, or rest — whatever cross-training method I’m feeling, or a pre-long run rest day. This also gives me a play day to try new classes or keep riding my bike, which I’ve been pretty into lately.
Saturday: Long run
Sunday: Bike, spin, yoga, or rest
I want to get to the gym to lift and do core stuff twice per week — probably on Tuesdays and Thursdays, since those are already hard workout days, and then I can truly recover on my easier days.
Beyond the training plan and the time goal, I have a few other goals for marathon training this year.
1. Mix up my long runs.
My friend Emily has a rule during training: No two long run routes are the same. In the past, I’ve done almost all of my long runs rounding loops of Central Park. And I don’t hate that, because I love the park and all of its familiar faces every weekend. But now that I’m in a new area, I want to explore it more by foot. So instead of always running south along the water and back (as I’ve been doing), I want to explore the Long Path up in the Palisades, I want to run up and over the George Washington Bridge and into Manhattan, and I want to incorporate workouts and fast finishes into my long runs. I’m a creature of habit, but I want to keep my weekend adventures exciting.
2. Stay strong!
Well, get strong first. Then stay strong. The only injuries or minor aches and pains I’ve ever had have been the result of overuse or muscle imbalances and weaknesses. (Dead Butt Syndrome is no joke.) Squats, push-ups, planks, and all that jazz.
3. Be smart.
If something hurts, rest. A 16-week plan means I have time to work through aches and pains, and I can take extra days off as needed. Easy enough, right?
4. Eat better.
Effective immediately! I was doing well, and then this weekend hit and now I can’t remember the last time I ate a vegetable. Again, easy enough. I don’t want to feel bloated and wishing I’d focused more on my diet come race morning.
5. Let it hurt.
Not like injury hurt. But let the workouts hurt a little. That’s how you get harder, better, faster, stronger.
6. Run with friends more often.
As for the watch…
I’ve loved running and racing without a GPS watch this year, and I think it would be silly to abandon a strategy that seems to be working well. But I also need to keep track of my weekend mileage on long runs, and running my Strava app for three hours straight will drain my phone battery and use up my entire data plan in just one day. So I might bring back my watch for long runs and some workouts. I’m still sort of undecided. I don’t want to get too attached to it.
OK, New York City Marathon! Let’s do this!
ANYONE ELSE ENTERING MARATHON TRAINING MODE? First marathon? Fifteenth marathon? First New York City Marathon? Share share!
I love racing! I love racing short distances! Before yesterday, I had only raced three 5Ks, each a year or more apart. (Turkey Trots FTW.) I know we all (maybe?) get hyped up on marathons and half-marathons and long, endurance-y […]
First, Ellie had surgery. Then I got food poisoning. Now Brian seems to have it. Who wants to come visit West New York?! We’ve been a rotating rough bunch over here lately, but Ellie bounced back from her surgery beautifully, and […]
“Eat salad,” they said. “It’s healthy,” they said. Vegetables are good for you,” they said. “Taste the rainbow!” And so, even though I really wanted a cheesy omelet or an avocado BLT smothered in chipotle mayo, I decided, “You know what? […]
My poor puppy! As I mentioned yesterday, Ellie had some surgery on Tuesday to remove a “kissing wart” and to extract two of her chipped little bottom teeth. “Poor puppy” = she has not been phased in the slightest by this procedure. […]
Ugh. This week. It feels like it’s been one terrible, sad, tragic, heartbreaking news story after another. And with every news story comes outrage, and by outrage I mostly mean rabid debates on social media. (Were people this mean and […]
It feels trivial to write a recap about the 10K I ran this weekend when there are so many more important things in the world to focus on right now. My heart is broken for the people of Orlando and […]
Happy Monday! First, here’s a picture of Ellie. She’s sad that I never got around to a Fridays With Ellie post last week. Now, here’s a bit of life lately… Feeling: Good! Healthy! I’m feeling pretty tired on account of […]
I woke up in a foul mood yesterday. You know when you have a plan for your day and then something immediately doesn’t go according to said plan, and it throws off your entire day and your plan and your life? God […]
What day is it? Friday! What does that mean? Fridays With Ellie! Our little monster has been living her best life these days. She’s been to Washington, D.C., where she got to hang out with her puppy cousin, Ranger, and […]