Columbus Marathon Training – Week Seven: Getting in the Thick of It

Ooooh man, it’s really starting to feel like marathon training now. Between the mileage, starting speed work this week, longer long runs, etc., the fatigue is beginning to set in. On top of that it’s really the peak of the summer so just like everywhere else it. is. HOT. Trying to stay hydrated in the intense humidity has been tough and has caused my hunger to be so all over the place.

Monday’s I usually run 30 seconds faster than my easy pace. Not fast enough to be a tempo or even a solid zone 3 run, but enough to get my legs moving a little faster and getting my heart up a bit. When my alarm went off Monday morning (at 4:30 am) it was still 79 degrees. I decided to just run it at an easy pace and even though my splits were strong, it just felt tough.

Wednesday morning I started speed work. Luckily the humidity broke a little and the temps were a bit cooler. I also only had to do 2×800 so it was a pretty quick workout. Thursday was the best day of the week. Fairly low humidity, cooler temperatures, and just an easy recovery run.

I woke up Friday and was excited to see that the temps were in the mid-60s, but then looked out the window to see a very thick fog that was the result of 100% humidity. I had to get in my easy pace minus 30 second run and I wasn’t excited about it. I felt like I was running at race pace and my heart rate was elevated for the majority of the run. It just plain out sucked.

I’m no different than anyone else and the humidity really takes a toll on me. It makes me a whiny runner so I try to avoid talking about it because I find it a little annoying when runners constantly post about how hot it is when everyone is dealing with it. Almost halfway through my long run on Saturday, I announced that I just “wasn’t feeing it.” My pace coach asked me if I was okay and physically I was perfectly fine, but mentally I was struggling to be motivated to be out there. Besides dehydration and weird hunger, the humidity just drains my energy and I woke up every morning wanting to just go back to sleep. Each morning I got out there and felt fine, but being motivated to do it has been another story.

I was pretty much dreading my run Sunday morning. Even though I look forward to hitting the trail I really just wanted to sleep in before my strength class. On top of that, it was my longest Sunday run of the training cycle. It felt so nice and cool during my 2 warm up miles, but once I got into the woods it was back to humidity. I was glad to be in the woods though because I knew if I had been out on the paved trail I would’ve struggled to finish. I rained a ton Saturday night so the stream was rushing and anytime there was movement in the trees it sounded like it was raining again. I can’t say I enjoyed this run as much as my past Sunday’s, but I got it done and was happy with my splits.

The one place where I am building confidence is my strength class. I continue to see improvements and Sunday morning I was able to do something I wouldn’t have been able to do at the beginning of my training cycle. I can see this translating especially in my Sunday trail runs as I get stronger on hills and am able to take things faster at the same heart rate.

Group selfie after class!
Group selfie after class!

I’m not sad week 7 is over. Looking at the forecast it doesn’t seem like we’re going to have a break anytime soon so I will just have to tough it out for the next few weeks until the humidity breaks.

Something that may give me a mood boost in week 8 is two pairs of new shoes! Our training group upped our discount this past Saturday and I took full advantage of it. I have been needing to replace my shoes and kept putting it off, but with the additional discount it was the perfect opportunity. I got a new pair of my Asics GT 2000s which I adore. I’m super bummed that they’ve narrowed them like they did about 3 years ago, but going up a full size will hopefully make it ok. I also picked up a pair of Nike Structure. I went home with a free pair of Nike’s from the charity fashion show that are super comfortable, but they weren’t right for me to run in. I’m looking forward to getting these shoes broken in. I haven’t decided which shoes I will run the marathon in yet, but I will also replace my Asics Kayano’s soon and then I can make a decision between the three.

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That about wraps it up for the week. I have a few upcoming posts planned that will add a little more variety to my weekly training recaps. Of course, between training and working it’s tough to fit in time to plan and write some other posts.

 

6 thoughts on “Columbus Marathon Training – Week Seven: Getting in the Thick of It

  1. Hanna @ TheMillennialNextDoor

    It’s been a tough week for me too. It’s hard to know how much of it is lost fitness versus the heat, because sometimes it’s hard to believe heat and humidity could slow me down as much as it does some days. I was talking to a runner friend of mine this weekend and she said that she has been feeling the same way all summer too, so I think it is just rough on lots of people. At the race I did yesterday, finish times seemed a little slow across the board, so when I get down about it I just try to remember that it is affecting everyone. But, like you, I am just getting a little sick of it, in running and in general. Then my mind flashes back to 6 months ago when we were all complaining about the sub-freezing temperatures and trying to run with ice on the sidewalks!

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    1. I’m so glad you’re back. I think the heat/humidity is just starting to wear on the running community much like the cold/ice of winter. I will still take the heat over the cold any day because it’s less likely to force me to the treadmill. Plus, I prefer running in my sports bra and sweating like crazy over layers and layers and still feeling cold! It’s just tough I start to hit the thick of training and constantly be slowed down by the heat/humidity. My guess is that most of your slow down IS from the heat/humidity. Depending on how humid, it can cause me to slow down anywhere from 30 seconds to a full minute to stay at the right heart rate. I’m ready to go go go!

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  2. Jennifer @ Dashing in Style

    I don’t think talking about the heat & humidity makes you whiny! It’s a part of training you’re dealing with just like everything else. My coach said do not feel guilty at all if you’re not performing as well as you’d like, that running in the intense heat & humidity is about simply surviving so we can come back strong when the weather’s better. I think you did great given the humidity. We had our most intense humidity Saturday afternoon after raining all day. I don’t think I could have run in those conditions. Just sitting outside I was dying! Also, my standard shoe is GT 2000. I just got the new trail version and thought they were narrower!

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  3. Oh my days, free Nikes are where it’s at! My work did some work with Nike and we hosted a sample sale a few weeks back. I got two pairs of shoes, which I’m thoroughly happy with (as well as a shit ton of clothing I probably didn’t need). Good job on battling through the humidity!

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  4. Your post has made me feel so much better about my tough long run from this past week. The humidity and heat are definitely taking their toll and it stinks that there’s no end in sight. Hopefully it will make running in the crisp, cool fall feel like I’m flying, but it’s definitely been leaving me feel demoralized. Nice work on your strength improvement!

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