Updated: Jan 27, 2020
Week 1 of 28 – January 6-12: Total mileage – 41.2
Monday: 7.5 in 58 minutes
Tuesday: 11.5 in 1:45
Wednesday: Off – rock climbing and yoga
Thursday: 4 easy in 35 minutes
Friday: 6 easy in 52 minutes
Sunday: 12 easy and steady in 1:41
Last year I asked Chief Heartbreaker Dan Fitzgerald about doing the NRC Speed workouts instead of the prescribed runs in my marathon training plan, his response has really stuck with me. It essentially was, “if you enjoy doing something, do it” he went on to explain that I should try to find ways to make the NRC work for my plan. The point is, I have taken that to heart and despite creating a plan for myself for 28 weeks to build up to the VT 100, a plan that did not involve running 19 miles total on Monday/Tuesday or a very difficult workout in "the Michigan", I did it anyways. Why? Because while following a plan and sticking to the model can help me get to my goal, I want to make sure I do things that inspire me along the way. So that brings me to Monday. I recently was connected with a group called Back On My Feet (BOMF), an organization that helps individuals who are in sober homeless shelters and are looking to take back control of their lives. There is an incentive system in place to help these individuals get running gear, job placement and housing assistance based on how many runs they attend. There are individuals who run or walk at all different paces and BOMF even gets bibs for a lot of different races/events for members/volunteers. So on Monday January 6th I went to my first group run, they meet at 5:45 am and its about 3.36 miles from my apartment in Cambridge, I somehow managed to get a late start on my run over and so I ended up running a bit of a tempo pace to get there on time in 20 degree temps, not a great warmup.. I ended up walking with two guys and while I did not get to know them or their back story too much what I did walk away with was more of an understanding that we are all just people and they do not want to be treated any differently than I do. A friend from the Hearbreakers, Becky Dobbin, is also a volunteer with BOMF and was at this run so we ran back together and chatted about goals for 2020, she is doing a marathon in a couple weeks in Hawaii simply because she is going on vacation and there also happens to be a marathon.. She logs serious mileage and has a pretty impressive running resume that includes sub 3:00 in the marathon.
The best thing I have gotten from my time with the Heartbreakers is to get to know a ton of awesome people but also run with a lot of super fast people that push me to up my game. Speaking of which, the following morning I took another early run over the BU bridge but this time to the Reggie indoor track for the NRC Speed Run. We did a version of the Michigan. 1600 at 10k pace with 60s rest, 5 laps around outside of track tempo, 1200 @ 10k, 5 laps tempo, 800 @ 5k pace, 5 laps tempo, 400 FAST! This workout certainly makes you realize just how fast 60 seconds is.. I took the tempos pretty easy and focused on the faster reps. Definitely did not want to overdo it on day 2 of training but hard to not compete against a really fast group. Took a much needed day off on Wednesday and did yoga and went rock climbing at Brooklyn Boulders in Somerville. This is a go to form of cross training for me, I love the yoga classes to help me with mobility, flexibility, breathing and mindfulness and the rock climbing is something I really enjoy and a great way for me to workout my upper body a bit. The rest of the week was relatively relaxed on the running front. Took Thursday as an easy 4 recovery run on the Mass Ave Bridge loop, Friday was easy 6, Saturday I took off as we had my Aunt Barb’s Celebration of Life. Was a hard day and a long weekend where things in life were clearly prioritized over my running but was still nice to sneak out for a 12 mile easy long run along the Charles on Sunday before a family brunch. Week 1 of 28 in the books!