Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Half Marathon Update and WIAW

I mentioned yesterday that I would be grateful for a light day today, and I was absolutely right. I felt incredibly sore and was so excited that both boot camp and my half marathon training schedule allowed me to opt for incline walking instead of running or lifting.

I really used my time on the treadmill as an opportunity to stretch my legs and work up a sweat. It felt great to not worry about mileage, and I realized that part of me is excited to be done training for my half marathon so I can go back to my normal workout routine.

Speaking of which, I've had a few conversations lately regarding my "normal" routine. In Colorado a few months ago, another blogger asked if I'm a runner, and I laughed--definitely not! I feel pretty confident that I will be able to finish my half marathon, but running is certainly not my ideal workout. Actually, it's hard to pick a favorite; I love so many different types of exercise. I truly love yoga, jogging (but perhaps only once or twice per week, around a max of four miles), circuit training, water skiing, downhill skiing, strength training, incline walking, dance classes, hiking, and miscellaneous exercise videos at home. I also love any outdoor exercise, like canoeing/kayaking, bike riding, paddle boarding, swimming--I just tend not to do those ones as often.

My ideal fitness week would look something like this:
  • 2 days of circuit training (cardio + strength moves) with one HIIT routine
  • 1 day of running
  • 2 days of yoga with strength 
  • 1 day of outdoor activity (hiking, walking/jogging, etc.)

Meanwhile, I'm still training for the half marathon until Labor Day, and that requires lots of running. Our current plan, Hal Higdon's Novice 1 Program, has us running four days per week, and we've built up to about 20 miles or more per week. Here are my thoughts on the plan so far (I'll provide another review after the half marathon):

  • Steady increase in mileage (about one extra mile per week, with a few exceptions).
  • Inclusion of cross training and strength training days.
  • No speed training because it's a novice program.
  • As the mileage has increased, the time required to do it all increases, so I find it hard to maintain the strength/cross training parts of the plan. 
  • There is no "tapering" at the end (decrease in mileage right before the race), except the last few days before the race, and I'm worried about the lack of rest there.
  • The plan only goes up to 10 miles, and Hal suggests that the adrenaline on race day will carry us through those last three miles. Yikes! That's quite a gamble, so Terry and I have extended our training to incorporate one additional long run (11.5 miles or so).
And here's the REALLY exciting news: my friend Heidi ran her first half marathon in May and was willing to sit down with me for a Q & A about her training and experience. I thought it would be helpful for me to hear her tips, and I certainly wanted to share her wisdom on BLWB for your benefit! I'll have all her advice posted tomorrow, so get excited! Bonus: She's a physical therapist and threw in a few professional tips as well!

For now, let's get to today's eats!

Check out the other WIAWs!

8:45 am - Breakfast

Almond French toast with half of a banana

and some tea

12:30 pm - Lunch

I met up with my former coworkers at Simmzy's, a great little spot in Manhattan Beach. The location is actually known for its burgers and craft beers, but since I had a burger yesterday, I opted to skip the red meat today.
Prosecco while I waited
(unpictured: salad with walnuts, herbed goat cheese, dried cranberries, apples, and a vinaigrette, plus sweet potato fries we all shared)

7:15 pm - Dinner

Terry and I walked to Fresh Corn Grill. I enjoyed a grilled corn bowl with vegetables and an Asian BBQ sauce.

9:00 pm - Dessert

That's it for Wednesday. Hope you had a great day!

What's your go-to exercise or ideal fitness plan? 


  1. Can't wait to hear more about your training as it continues. Way to take it easy with a walking interval routine. Your dessert looks deliciou, what all does it consist of?

    My goal to fitness has and will most likely always be running :)

  2. Dessert was delicious! I totally didn't mention anything about it, but I made a peach cobbler. It was a great way to use up all the peaches I had! :-)

    I wish I was more of a runner, but this plan has definitely showed me that I CAN run, so that's a start!

  3. I have experienced the same problem with upping mileage! How to find the time? I usually end up just sacrificing sleep (which isn't the best solution!).

    1. No kidding! I don't know how full marathoners do it. The longest runs are maybe 75-80 minutes, but I still have trouble fitting it all in!