Heroes to Hero 5k (18:41)

Last weekend I decided to run the Heroes to Hero 5k.  The race goes to a great cause, and I’ve always wanted to run.  Usually, it’s the same weekend as the Runners World Festival but this year, it worked out I was able to do both.

After a busy couple of days at work, I found myself exhausted.  I woke up Saturday morning extremely unmotivated.  It was spitting rain, and I was tired.  My husband was getting over whatever was going around so equally as unmotivated.  Together we were two excited to race peas in a pod.

We got to the race around 7:30 am.  The race started at 9 am, however, it was a point to point and the last bus left at 8:30.  I’ve never done a point to point bused 5k, so I wasn’t sure even how to warm up.  Ultimately, I ran 3 miles boarded the bus and got to the start.  I can’t say it was my favorite warm-up process, but I made it to the start successfully.  Usually, I like to warm up much closer to the beginning and not sit around for another half an hour.

After getting to the start, I talked to several people including our store owner and another staff member.  By the time I knew it, we were off.

During the first mile, my body felt stiff from waiting.  I didn’t feel bad, but I definitely did not feel good either. The ground was slick, and I just wanted to focus on feeling relaxed.  I went to the race to run as fast as I could for the day.  I wasn’t sure what that was, but I wanted to give it my full effort for the day.  I crossed the first mile in 6:05 which I was pleasantly surprised with.  Definitely one of my faster miles recently.

During the second mile, I continued to focus on progressing through the mile.  I could see the first place woman ahead, but I didn’t think I would be able to pass her.  Around the halfway point, my husband glided by me.  While he wasn’t “all out” racing, he was running harder than usual.  I hit the second mile in 6:04 and was even more pleased.  I couldn’t believe it.

During the third mile, I felt as if I was finally warming up.  I never felt bad. However, I felt relaxed.  Typically in 5ks, I feel like I’m holding on for dear life during the last mile, however, on Saturday I didn’t feel like that.  I wasn’t tired, but I also couldn’t move my legs any faster.

heroes to hero 5k

I ran a 6:01 last mile and finished in 18:41 and as second woman overall.  I was pleasantly surprised with my time.  My huge goal was to progress in the 5k, and I did just that.  I was 19 seconds faster than my previous fastest 5k a few weeks ago.

Progression:

8/20 Run the Runway 5k (20:54)
8/27 Philadelphia Airport 5k (19:45)
9/10 Flying Fish 5k (19:17)
9/23 Cherry Hill Book It 5k (18:59.8)
9/30 Dragon Run (19:06)
10/1
Run for Recovery (19:12)
10/14 Heroes to Hero 5k (18:41)

Question for you:
Do you like to point to point courses?
To be honest, I prefer somewhere I can start/finish near my car.

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Training: Recovering and Racing

Most of last week was spent recovering from the Crawlin’ Crab Half Marathon.  By Wednesday, my legs felt decent.  Which was great because the rest of my week was filled with longer work days.  Nothing I couldn’t handle though.

Monday: Easy 45 minutes
Tuesday: Easy 30 minutes
Wednesday: Easy 60 minutes
Thursday: OFF
Friday: Easy 60 minutes
Saturday: Heroes to Hero 5k (18:41)
Sunday: 6.5-mile tempo run/total miles 14
Total: 44-47

Progression:

Week 7: 40 miles (13.1 miles workout)
Week 8: 43-45 miles (2 workouts: 1 race/1 tempo)
Week 9: 41-43 miles (2 races)
Week 10: 50- 53 miles (13.1 miles workout)

Week 11: 44-47 miles (2 workouts: 1 race/1 tempo)

Easy Runs:

As I mention every week, my easy runs were just that easy.  There was nothing of excitement and most of them were hot and sticky.  You don’t have to be exciting to blog and this is just a classic example.

Heroes to Hero 5k (18:41)

Fastest 5k since April 1st. 18:41 with a progression of splits (6:05, 6:04, 6:01)

A post shared by Hollie (@fueledbylolz) on

I’ll have a full recap of the Heroes to Hero Run in the next few days.   On paper, it’s my fastest 5k since coming back from burnout.

To be honest, I never felt good.  On Saturday morning, I woke up exhausted and tired. While running the race, I felt as though I wasn’t getting any more tired but just running and zoned out.  Even before the race, my good friend said: “woah Hollie, you look exhausted and out of it” and I was.  My splits were 6:05, 6:04, 6:01, so it was definitely a nice progression (which almost never happens).

Other than the race, nothing too exciting last week.  This week I’m tapering down for the Runners World Half Marathon Race series.  It will be a busy weekend, and I’ll be racing both the 5k and the 13.1.  I will be honest, that I don’t feel as prepared for the race as I would like but I would rather be undertrained than overtrained.

The festival is a lot of fun and this year, my dad, is running the half which will make it even more enjoyable!

Running Posts from the Week:
Crawlin’ Crab Half Marathon
Who Cares Where You Run?
Hoka Clifton 4 Shoe Review

Questions for you:
What was your best workout last week?
How long does it take you to recover from races?

Training: Traveling and Hot Half Marathon

Last week was quite the interesting week.  Yay for some sort of excitement of training right?

As most people know from Instagram, I ran the Crawlin Crab half marathon.  I’ll go into more detail, but it wasn’t on my radar this year until last week.  I’ve always wanted to do it.

Monday: Easy 60 minutes
Tuesday: Easy 60 minutes
Wednesday: Easy 60 minutes
Thursday: Easy 60 minutes
Friday: Rest
Saturday: East 45 minutes
Sunday: Crawlin’ Crab 13.1 (1:32.30)+2 miles

Total: 50-53 miles

My weekday runs were just that, easy, and uneventful.  If I had known that I would be running a half that Sunday, I would have probably run less each day or had an extra rest day because the half added a lot more mileage to my week.

Crawlin’ Crab 13.1: 1:32.30

On paper, this looks like a personal worst.  It’s over 5 minutes slower than what I ran just three weeks ago at the Air Force Half on an easier course.  However, at the start, the weather was 75 degrees and 95% humidity.  I felt as though I was swimming.

As I mentioned, I didn’t plan to run the Crawlin’ Crab, but when my husband’s plans changed, I was left with a weekend with nothing to do so I drove back to hometown to see my parents.  I had always wanted to do Crawlin’ Crab, so I toed the line of the half.  Having the hardest week, thus far in my training, plus the weather, made it easy to determine it wouldn’t be a fast race for me.  Everyone suffered from the weather, and even though I was swimming, I placed 4th female and 9th overall.

In all, I’m happy with the week of training.  It’s not what I expected, but the Crawlin Crab felt more like a workout versus a hard race.   I was more happy to meet my goal of having fun and seeing several friends.

Progression (I’ve decided to just keep the last 5 weeks to keep it less cluttered):
Week 6: 45 miles (1 workout)
Week 7: 40 miles (13.1 miles workout)
Week 8: 43-45 miles (2 workouts: 1 race/1 tempo)
Week 9: 41-43 miles (2 races)
Week 10: 50- 53 miles (13.1 miles workout)

Posts of the Week:
September Training
Why I Don’t Post Paces Online

Questions for you:
Did you race this weekend?  There were a lot of good ones!
What was your best workout?

September Workouts: I am Actually Training

September was the first month in a long time I felt like “running me”.  Not me in peak shape, or me ready to conquer a goal race, but just LOLZ that actually runs.

The other day, I had a conversation with someone on base and they said: “wow Hollie I’ve never seen you in running clothes before”.  But, the blogging world says the complete opposite or: “wow, Hollie do you ever comb your hair”.

It’s a funny thing, priorities change and running is always there.  With that, here is my log for the month:

Miles Run: 150-160
Paces: 5:55-10:30-mostly untimed
Shortest Run: 2 mile cooldown
Longest Run: Air Force Half Marathon
Rest Days: 4
Workouts: 1 (45-minute tempo run)

Races:
Flying Fish 5k (19:17)
Air Force Half Marathon (1:27.28)
Cherry Hill Book It 5k (18:59.8)
Dragon Run (19:06)
Favorite Race:
Air Force Half Marathon

Thoughts:

I’m slowly building up my mileage.  Most older readers know me as someone as who typically runs anywhere from 60-80 miles when I’m in peak shape and primed for a PR.  I’ve been working my way up there but have stayed in the 40s for the last month.  It’s been a good spot for me right now to balance everything between life and running.  If everything progresses as it has, I do plan to continue increasing my mileage into the 50s next month.

Air force half marathon dayton ohio me running

Other than that, I’m feeling good about my mileage.  Knock on wood, I’m healthy and injury free.  My plan for October is simple: to continue building my mileage and frequently racing as workouts.

dragon run kingsway swedesboro nj me cupcake

Running Posts from the Month:
Why a Running Streak Does Not Work for Me
Techniques to Help Recover Faster
Staying Fit During the Off Season
How to Build a Running Base and Stay Healthy
Altra Escalante Shoe Review

Questions for you:
How was your month of September?

Run for Recovery (19:12)

A few weeks ago, I heard of the Run for Recovery which benefited a local drug treatment center.  As many readers know, my parked car was recently rear-ended by someone who was passed out at the wheel under the influence of opioids. Even before that incident, drug addiction has been an issue close to home.

After running the Dragon Run the day before, I had no time goals for the race.  I wanted to support something that meant so much to me.  To be honest, I would walk the race before not doing it.  If anything, it would serve as a good workout.  I’ve run many miles around the Cooper River Park, so I knew the area well.

I got to the race around 8 am.  It was scheduled to start around 9 but ended up starting closer to 9:15.

They made several announcements and a speech at the beginning which ultimately brought a few tears to my eyes.  Drug addiction can happen to anyone, no matter the family situation, age, or gender.  They asked everyone who had lost someone to addiction to stand at the front with the organization for a moment of silence, and that is when my tears began flowing. After that, we walked to the starting line.

Races at Cooper River involve about a half mile walk to the starting line.  I talked with a few people during the walk, and before we knew it, the race was off.  Immediately, I found myself in fourth place overall, which is where I stayed the entire time.

Since I raced the day before, I wasn’t sure what to expect.  When I am in shape, I typically feel good the second day of racing, but I am not in peak shape right now.  The first mile goes over a small bridge and heads toward the opposite side of the river.

Since it’s a well-known park, there are plenty of people walking and running who aren’t racing.  There was a bit of weaving involved, but I shocked myself and hit the first mile in 6:02.  (Which was faster than every mile I ran the day before).

I have run one other race at Cooper River in which I call my ultimate regression run.  I ran something like 6:0X, 6:30 and then 7:00.  I thought surely that would happen here, but I attempted to hold on for dear life.

The next two miles went on without much excitement.  I ran a 6:03 followed by a 6:13. It was a beautiful day and ideal conditions, but I still shocked myself.  I wasn’t sure what I was expecting to run but it wasn’t faster miles than the day before.

For the entire race, I ran alone and chased the three guys in front of me (chase being relative as they were a couple of minutes ahead).  I weaved around people using the park for their Sunday morning runs.  I high-fived a little kid who was walking around the lake with his mom.  For me, it felt more like a workout that I was supporting a cause. I was at a race, but with everyone not racing around, as well as the race being more meaningful, it didn’t feel like it.

When I hit the third mile and saw it was longer than .1 to the finish, I wasn’t disappointed.  I knew I would have been under 19 on a perfectly accurate course, but I’ll save that for another day.  I have a love/hate with racing at Cooper River.

You can see me around 19 minutes finishing. 

I like it because it’s easy to park and normally cheap.  I don’t because the course is notoriously long and unlike this weekend, it can get extremely crowded on the trail.

I’m happy I was able to combine two things I’m passionate about: public health and running.  Very few races can do both, with the last being the Lake Effect Half Marathon.

me run for recovery cooper river

I feel happy with my progress so far in 5ks.  My next major goal is to consistently be under 19 minutes, which I hope is by the end of October or November.

Progression:

8/20 Run the Runway 5k (20:54)
8/27 Philadelphia Airport 5k (19:45)
9/10 Flying Fish 5k (19:17)
9/23 Cherry Hill Book It 5k (18:59.8)
9/30 Dragon Run (19:06)
10/1 Run for Recovery (19:12)

Questions for you:
What is a cause that means a lot to you?
Is there a local park that holds a lot of races near you? 

 

Workouts: Double Races

Another week of training is now in the books and I have no complaints.  As it has been for the last nearly, 10 weeks, my weekday runs were boring and easy.  Then I ran not only 1, but 2 races this weekend.  For different reasons, both races were equally important to me nso after debating whether I want to run 1 or both, I decided to run both.

Monday: 60 minutes easy
Tuesday: 60 minutes easy
Wednesday: 90 minutes easy
Thursday: OFF
Friday: 60 minutes easy
Saturday: Dragon Run 5k (19:06) Total miles: 10
Sunday: Run for Recovery 5k: 19:12 Total miles: 10

Total: 40-43

As I mentioned, my weekday easy runs were just that…easy.  There wasn’t a lot to note and most of them were alone and in the early morning.  Running in the dark isn’t my favorite but that is how fall goes and I’m glad to be running again.

Dragon Run 5k (19:06)

The Dragon Run is one of my favorite fall races.  Last year it was the first race I broke 19 minutes again.  While I didn’t do that this year, I did have a strong race.  I’ve begun increasing my mileage, and my legs are more fatigued.  My splits were 6:11, 6:10 and 6:03 so I can’t complain about a negative split race.  Plus, the overall winners get cupcakes and my time was good enough for second place this year.

Run for Recovery: (19:12)

If you count feet per each race, I suspect the Run for Recovery was a little longer of a race than the Dragon Run and I actually ran a bit faster the second day.  Albeit, the course was flat around Cooper River Park.  Does it matter?  No.  I did the race for the cause meant a lot to me and I wasn’t running for time.  The race itself benefited a local drug treatment center. Even before my car was hit by someone under the influence, drug treatment and addiction is a cause that is both meaningful and personal to me.

I felt surprisingly decent for the race and ran a 6:02. 6:04, 6:11.  The race itself was uneventful and I ran most of it alone.

In all I’m happy with my progression in running.  While my streak of continuing to improve in 5ks this training cycle has stopped, that had to happen at some point.  I suspected it would be this weekend either Saturday or Sunday.

Progression:
I wonder how long I should keep including this.  It’s getting lengthy.
Week 1: 31-33 miles
Week 2: 33-35 miles
Week 3: 33-35 miles (1 workout)
Week 4: 35-37 miles (1 workout)
Week 5: 29-31 miles
Week 6: 45 miles (1 workout)
Week 7: 40 miles (13.1 miles workout)
Week 8: 43-45 miles (2 workouts: 1 race/1 tempo)
Week 9: 41-43 miles (2 races)

Posts of the week:
Altra Escalante Shoe Review
Why a Running Streak Does Not Work for Me

Questions for you:
Is there a health topic close to your heart?
I haven’t talked much about health topics recently but I did graduate and work in the community health field (with drug studies, sexual assault, and eating disorders) for a while. I also do some volunteering in the field. On a personal level, drug addiction is a big one and not because my car was recently hit by someone who overdosed on opioids.

Workouts: 5ks and Tempos

Training last week continued to progress well.  I recovered moderately well from the Air Force Half and was able to get in both a race and a workout over the weekend.

My next bigger race is the Runners World Festival 5k and 13.1.  While I could add the 10k and complete the hat trick, I’m too injury prone for that to be a smart idea.  The 5k and 13.1 has worked well in previous years, so like running shoes if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.

Monday: Easy 30 minutes
Tuesday: Easy 30 minutes/core
Wednesday: Easy 45 minutes/core
Thursday: OFF
Friday: Easy 60 minutes
Saturday: 5k (18:59.8) Total miles: 8
Sunday: 6.5 mile tempo (average 7:03 pace) total miles: 14/core

Total: 43-45

Thoughts:

My easy runs were just that, easy and recovery.  I don’t have anything to note about them, but boring isn’t a bad thing.

Saturday: Cherry Hill Book It 5k (18:59.8)

There were several 5ks in the area but to be honest, I didn’t make a decision to do any of them until Friday.  I ran by myself for the week, so I was kind of getting tired of it.  I knew I was going to run before work anyway and thought a hard effort would be good.  Plus, I use the Cherry Hill Library periodically (get it…).  I ended up taking over the lead around halfway and never looking back.  I’m happy with how the race went, I didn’t feel loose or fresh but I shouldn’t a week after my long run either.

Sunday: 2 mile warmup/6.5 mile tempo (7:03 average)/5.5 cool down

As I mentioned on Instagram, my next big race is the Runners World Festival where I’ll run the 5k and 13.1.  I’ll do a few 5ks before, but I’ll taper down for the Festival.  That being said, I need to train my body to race back to back days.  Last year around this time, I trained similarly, and it was when I felt the fittest.  7:03 is far from where I would like to be, but the first workout is always humbling.

Progression: 
Week 1: 31-33 miles
Week 2: 33-35 miles
Week 3: 33-35 miles (1 workout)
Week 4: 35-37 miles (1 workout)
Week 5: 29-31 miles
Week 6: 45 miles (1 workout)
Week 7: 40 miles (13.1 miles workout)
Week 8: 43-45 miles (2 workouts: 1 race/1 tempo)

I’m happy with my progression, I do believe it’s going well.  

Posts from the Week:
Air Force Half Marathon (1:27.28)
Techniques to Help Recover Faster

Questions for you:
Have you run multiple races in a weekend? 
When I’m fit, I seem to have some of my best races while doing 2 races in a weekend and running easy the rest of the week.  I’m not there just yet.
What was your best workout last week?