This week was 65 miles of running, 30 "miles" of pool-running and 3000 yards of swimming -- training log is here.
The week started out cautiously. Though it never seems that hard when I'm doing it, the "4-3-2-1" workout that I did last Sunday always takes a lot out of me the first time I run it. My guess is that it's the combination of a) 10 miles of marathon pace work (a hard effort in itself) with b) the distance - 17 miles won't feel long by the end of the cycle, but at that time it was the longest I've run since last December. (that record has since been eclipsed by this Sunday's long run)
So, I was tired on Sunday. And, frustratingly, I dealt with some insomnia Sunday night - a feeling that my body just could NOT turn off.
I've learned through hard experience that this insomnia is my early warning sign that I'm overreaching. I've also learned (again, the hard way) that when I'm starting to dig a hole, the proper response to to back off, not to fight through it. The quicker I get out of the hole, the better.
So, Monday became even easier than normal. I wore a belt for pool-running, and kept the effort very easy - just wiggling my legs in the water. Thus, what would normally the equivalent of an easy run instead became an extended ice bath.
[why didn't I just take the day off? Because I truly believe that gentle pool-running with the belt works far better for recovery than pure rest. At least for me.]
[and I'll also note here that one benefit of pool-running with the belt is that I can take the off day that I need and still log the "mileage" that my type A personality demands. Ugly, but the truth. Know your weaknesses and work with them.]
I slept far better Monday night, which was a good sign, and felt much better on Tuesday morning, though still a bit tired. To be stay on the safe side, my coach and I agreed that I'd back off of the pace for Tuesday's workout. The prescribed workout was 4-5x1200m. I'd normally run each in 4:2x, but instead I bumped myself back a "group" and let them set the pace - that ended up being a range from 4:40 down to 4:31 for the fourth repeat.
By the fourth repeat, I was feeling pretty darn good, and ready to go for a fifth. However, my coach split that into an 800 and 400 instead, which I ran at my normal effort. End result was that I felt great physically and positive mentally after the workout - unquestionably a far better result than if I had gutted out four repeats at my normal pace.
And the rest of the week went very well, with a solid tempo on Friday, and a good long run on Sunday. All very positive.
I'm clearly in good shape. The trick now, for the next several weeks, is not to get greedy and try to build even more fitness by hammering workouts, but instead to refine and carefully reinforce the fitness I currently have.
Monday: In the morning, foam rolling, yoga and 8 "miles" pool-running with the belt. 2 "miles" pool-running in the evening.
Tuesday: 11.5 miles, including a track workout of 4x1200 plus 800, 400 in 4:40, 4:36, 4:36, 4:32, 2:54, 82. Also did injury prevention work at the gym and 1250 yards of recovery swimming. Foam-rolling at night.
Wednesday: In the morning, 8.5 miles very easy to yoga (8:55), yoga, and then 4 miles very easy (8:40) plus drills and strides. 4 "miles" pool-running and foam rolling in the evening.
Thursday: In the morning, 9 "miles" pool-running and upper body weights and core. Another 3 "miles" of pool-running and foam rolling at night.
Friday: 11 miles, including a 4 mile tempo on the track in 25:16 (6:25/6:22/6:21/6:08). Followed with injury prevention work and 1250 yards recovery swimming. Foam rolling at night.
Saturday: 10 miles easy (8:58) followed by drills and four strides, and upper body weights and core. Foam rolling and 4 "miles" pool-running in afternoon.
Sunday: 21 miles progressive, split as first 7 averaging 8:51 pace, next 6.5 averaging 7:43, last 7.5 averaging 6:52. Followed with injury prevention work and 500 yards recovery swimming. Foam rolling in afternoon.