MCM Training Week 1 Recap!

My 16 week training cycle for the Marine Corps Marathon began on Monday, July 6th.  Given that my body is still mildly protesting the agony fun-fest-of-joy that I put it through less than 2 months ago at VCM, I have decided to gently* ease back into marathon training mode rather than jump in head (feet?) first.

* I plead insanity with respect to what happened on Saturday and Sunday.

So now for the official Week 1 Recap!  Note on paces (or lack of thereof) – I find it easy to get sucked into the comparison trap when bloggers post their training paces for every freakin run.  Therefore, I will not post about my training paces unless my pace is somehow crucially important to whatever nonsense I’m blogging about.

Week 1

Monday – Lunch: 4 x 800 + warmup/cool-downs = 3.75 miles / Evening: Legs & Core

Tuesday –  4 miles road/trails (was supposed to be easy, but I found myself huffing and puffing on the hills)  / Arms & Core

Wednesday – 4 X 400 + warmup/cool-downs = 4 miles

Thursday  – 5.39 miles on mostly trails (lots of hills! gah!) / Arms & Core

Friday – 2 miles super easy on the dreadmill / Core

Saturday – Bear Swamp Run!  (Masochistic 5.7 miles) + Warmup = 6.5 miles

Sunday – Stowe 8 Miler!  (distance self-explanatory, no warmup or cool-down because I was already sweating before the race began I planned to run at an easy pace)

Total: 33.64 miles (Trying not to freak out about the .64.)

My mileage was not as high as it was for Week 1 of VCM training, but that’s OK!  I want to do things a bit differently this time around.  My training cycle for MCM will hopefully include:

  • Less junk miles and more meaningful miles.  I actually hate the term “junk” mile so I don’t know why I just used it.  Running is running.  However, when I was training for VCM, I found myself slogging through slow blah miles just to reach my magical weekly mileage number.  This time around, I’d like to run more miles with purpose, even if that means running lower mileage overall.
  • To elaborate on the above bullet-point, more speed-work and tempo runs!  The plan is to do speed-work at least once a week (preferably on the track), and run at tempo speed at least once a week as well (if I have a race, that will likely count as my tempo run).  Equally important, easy/recovery runs will be easy!  No more of this pretending-my-pace-is-easy-when-I-am-clearly-out-of-breath crap.
  • I know I’ve said this before, but more strength training!  I will shoot for legs 3X/weeks, arms 3X/week, and core 5X/week.  No slacking.
This is how I know I will have made progress.

So you may be questioning my life decisions wondering about the two races I ran this past weekend.  The Bear Swamp Run is a Central Vermont Runners race that is 5.7 miles long and SUPER hilly.  Despite its name, I did not see any bears during the race.  😦  I may have seen a swamp, although I cannot be sure because I was mostly on the lookout for bears.  Here is the elevation profile:

Elevation Profile for Bear Swamp.
Just looking at this picture is giving me PTSD.

I checked out the elevation profile ahead of time, but for some reason I did not think it would be that bad.  Well, it was that bad.  I’m sure the heat and humidity didn’t do me any favors as well.  I knew going into the race that I am not in shape to run like the wind, so my plan was to run strong and have fun.  Unfortunately, I felt pretty crappy for the entirety of the race.  My fun level was at about a 2 on the running fun-ness scale (goes from 1-10, obviously), and that was only because I enjoyed chatting/hanging with my fellow runners.  Had I been competing against a bunch of un-fun people such as post apocalyptic zombies I probably would have been at a 1 on the fun-ness scale. 

Previously in the week, I had received an email offering free entry into the Stowe 8 Miler for CVR members also running and/or volunteering at Bear Swamp.  This seemed like a good idea at the time.  [Spoiler alert!  Not a good idea.]  However, I woke up slightly sore on Sunday from the above-mentioned mountain hill.  Nonetheless, I was not too worried because I planned all along to use the Stowe 8 Miler as my long run, therefore running no faster than an 8:45ish pace.  That probably would have been perfectly manageable had the race not taken place in the inner core of the Earth in 85 degree/humid weather.  While I managed to stay under 9:00/mi, I felt like I was going to die from heat stroke the entire time.  It was clear from the carnage around me that I was not the only one on the brink of death.

See that pink and blue blog in the background?  That is me, melting.
See that pink and blue blob in the background?  That is me, melting.  [Also, you’re welcome EORC man.  You are now famous.]
Ah well, what doesn’t kill me makes me want to live in a hole in which the soil is likely cool and dark and there are cute animals such as groundhogs makes me stronger, right?  On to week 2!

2 thoughts on “MCM Training Week 1 Recap!

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