Training Weekly: Chicago week 7/16

Week 7, is my biggest week yet. At least it will be if all goes to plan! 800m track intervals, hills, cross training and a casual trail race to top it off. The time to go big, has arrived!


3 miles in 29 mins 01 (Average 9.39mm pace)

30 mins stretching

Okay, so the time to go big is on hold for rest day. 3 easy miles with my husband and a half hour stretching session. I do like Mondays!


8x800m repeats with 90 seconds jog recoveries (9 miles in total)

1 hour body pump class

After seven weeks, this morning at 6am, I finally got my ass back on the track for possibly my toughest interval set this cycle. To be honest, I’m never sure how to measure my track sessions. I tend to set my watch up, but I do think it struggles to hold the GPS when I’m running round in circles, or more specifically, ovals. Most of these reps were around 10-20m longer than 800m, so I’m trying not to be too disappointed that I couldn’t get them all under 3.30. I think I might be better just manually lapping it in future though. Anyone have any advice? On a positive note though, I enjoyed being back on the track. I’m also really proud that I fort to hold onto the final 4 reps when I could have easily given up. Progress!

The good thing about doing an early interval session is that, for once, I didn’t turn up to body pump looking like a total sweaty mess. I’m starting to get a bit bored of doing the same thing in body pump each week though. I’ve actually got the opportunity to do an outdoor boot camp session starting next Tuesday evening, and I’m thinking maybe I should give that a go? I do love circuit training, and I do love being outside, so in theory, it should be right up my street. It’s just whether my legs want to play ball. Hmmmmm…. to be continued.


10.01 miles in 1:28:51 (Average 8.52mm pace)

There’s no hiding from it, I find Wednesday’s tough. Working 8-6.30 makes fitting in 10 miles a real challenge, and I was totally ready to just curl up on the sofa with pizza. Instead, I laced up my trainers and headed out. What saved this run was exploring a new route with some beautiful evening trails. That, and the 500th birthday edition of Marathon Talk. As the miles ticked over my legs actually started to feel better and considering I didn’t push the pace and it was completely organic, I’m fairly happy with an 8.52 average. I had pizza afterwards too.


30 mins grit plyo class

30 mins pilates

As I’ve said before, finishing a 10 miler at 8.30pm and being back at the gym for 6am the following morning is a challenge. Especially when your brain knows what lies ahead! This week though, I walked into the studio to find it totally full, with everyone stood behind a step. Grit strength has become grit plyo. How did I miss that memo?? Sometimes though, ignorance is bliss and it probably did me good to shake up my cross training a bit.

I added in half an hour of rehab style work with a theraband, strengthening them damn glutes!


7.04 miles in 1:05:14 (Average 9.16mm pace) Including 10x 1 minute hill efforts- total 776ft elevation

1 hour body balance class

Good shoes take you good places, and so after almost 1000 miles in my old New Balance 1080’s I decided it was finally time for the changing of the guard. And I think I might be in love. The new model is lighter, springer, more cushioned without bing mushy and most importantly, actually made me enjoy my hill session!

I couldn’t face running up and down the same hill, so I decided to make up some zigzag play on the beach to include 10x 1 min hill efforts. If fartlek is Swedish for speed play, then I’m calling this ‘Sicksacklek’. I’ll let you work out the translation.

The evening was spent doing some much needed stretching at body balance and then eating ALL of the Sushi!


Upton House Parkrun in 24 mins 30 (Average 7:57mm pace)

Continuing my ‘run a different parkrun every Satuday in August’ challenge, I dragged some friends to Upton House in Poole. I’m loving exploring some different events and we’re quite lucky to have 5 or 6 all within a 10 mile radius.

After being touch and go as to whether it would actually go ahead due to severity of the wind, we were quite lucky that the course was unscathed. Despite the hills and hurricanes, I found myself running reasonably fast. Probably too fast, but I’ll save that judgement for tomorrow. I am loving making parkrun a bit more sociable over the last few weeks. And this morning I even got home to pick up some croissants from M’s bakery before they close for a three week holiday. I want to be happy for them having some time off, I really do. But, I’m seriously not sure how I’ll survive!


16 miles including Salisbury54321 half marathon

I don’t even know where to begin. I love this race, but it’s tough. With almost 900 feet of elevation over 5 hills and some really technical trails. I didn’t really have a plan, apart from having run it twice before, I knew I didn’t want to get caught in the walking backlog on the first hill. So being far braver and more ambitious than I felt, I placed myself near the front. Something I’ve never done before. Ever. I’ll probably write a separate race report, but the long and short of it is that I finished third female! Me! I still can’t quite believe it and I’m still on cloud 9. It’ll probably never happen again, but for now, I want to remember this feeling for ever!

What a week! I think this was the week I needed to convince myself that I can actually still run. I loved getting back on the track, I had a great time doing some more parkrun tourism, and as for Sunday’s race…… have I mentioned that?? It’s now Sunday night and to be honest I’m still buzzing. So, I’m going to sign off here and if anyone needs me, I’ll be bouncing around somewhere on cloud 9 with my new fireman bear!

Night all! x

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