Half Marathon Training: Weather can make or break a long run!

WEATHER can make or break a long run.

Newtons and Camelbak. You guessed it- its long run time!

Yesterday, I went on a 10 mile run with L. It was a really good long run. I never thought weather would effect me so much, but ever since I started running five years ago I remember how cold past winters have been and when we have had a heat wave summer. As for yesterday morning… it was sunny and around 50 degrees, perfect running weather. It is officially time to swap out my running shorts for running pants and tanks for long sleeve shirts.

Yesterday, I ran in my adidas running capris and my brooks MCM long sleeve running shirt, (no lululemon- shocking I know)  but I felt perfect, never too hot, never too cold.

MENTAL

I remember telling L that I thought this was going to be a really good run… so mentally I was in the zone. Have you ever tried that before? In the beginning, of your next run, just say it out loud, “This is going to be a good run, I can feel it.” Trust me, by saying positive words like this, you are setting yourself up mentally for a really great run.

PREPARATION

Running can be the most simple minimalist sport ever. You can do it anywhere and all you need is a really good pair of shoes – or according to some runners, shoes aren’t even necessary. But when it comes to a run longer than eight miles I always bring my stuff. For this 10 miler, I was prepared in many ways . As I said above, I was dressed appropriately, and mentally set myself up for a success. Along with both of those things, I also had my Camelbak filled with two liters of water, my Jelly Belly Sports beans ( for fuel,) my iPod, my Garmin, keys, phone, money, and pepper spray. ¬†I was ready and feeling good.

THE RUN

So L and I hit the MVT trail and headed south towards Old Town.  Because it was around 9:00 am, the trail was pretty empty, only a few walkers.  This was very relaxing, and heading towards Old Town is always very pretty, right along the Potomac. I was trying to run between a 9:30 Р9:00 minute mile for the first half hoping I could run the second half faster. I was sipping water every two miles, and fueled up with sports beans twice, once at mile 4, a second time at mile 8.

The first half felt really good. I did have to stop two times to make sure L, who was right behind me, knew her way. We made it to Old Town and then turned back. On the way back, I felt really good, except for around mile 8, I really started to feel the ground in my Newtons. I believe this feeling is just a friction feeling of sweat, skin, and the ground all mingling. This sensation made it harder for me to maintain anything faster than a 9 minute mile, so I kept my pace at around 9:15. L and I ended up finishing in 1:40, and we both felt like we could have kept going farther – which I am pleased with.

THE PLAN

I am following the Hal Higdon Intermediate Half Marathon Plan. I love Hal. I was fortunate to meet him at the Chicago Marathon Expo! Although, I have never followed a plan for a half marathon, I have followed Hal’s plans for my marathon training and felt successful. So hopefully his half marathon plan will also bring me success. This week’s long run is a 15k, but depending on how I feel I might just do another 10 miler.

The plan also includes shorter daily runs, speed work, and strength training. Durning my shorter training runs I am trying to run between a 8:30 and 9:00 minute mile. As for speed work, I might actually do some drills on the treadmill at the gym- even though I hate the treadmill.

STRENGTH TRAIN

Yesterday, after my 10 miler, I did some strength training. Because I have changed my stride to a more natural running stride, it is very important for me to strength train. I have to mainly focus on my upper body and core.

I did all my strength training using a stability ball, which works abs as long as shoulders and back. I also used dumbbells, and kettle bell.

seated dumbbells lateral raises¬†–¬†3 sets (10 reps) 5 lb dumbbells

seated arnold press Р 3 sets (10 reps) 5 lb dumbbells

seated dumbbell rear deltoid raises¬†–¬†3 sets (10 reps) 5 lb dumbbells

seated dumbbell front raise¬†–¬†3 sets (10 reps) 5 lb dumbbells – this was my favorite one and this one intensely works your abs.

seated dumbbell press¬†–¬†3 sets (10 reps) 5 lb dumbbells

seated alternate dumbbell press¬†–¬†3 sets (10 reps) 5 lb dumbbells – for a more advanced move try this with one leg crossed over the other.

weighted crunch on stability ball¬†–¬†3 sets (10 reps) 5 lb dumbbells

plank on forearms while balancing on the stability ball Р3 sets 1 minute each

wide leg squat¬†–¬†3 sets(10 reps) 25 lb kettle bell

stability ball squat¬†–¬†3 sets (10 reps) 5 lb dumbbells

All of these work outs I found in Oxygen Magazine

In the end, I was really happy with my 10 mile run and my strength training. I still need to pick the pace up and work on cadence, but besides that I am feeling pretty confident and excited about my half marathon scheduled for December 1st. Although, I have done four ten mile races since April, I never felt like I was running far or training for a long distance race. For some reason this felt like a long run for me. So let me tell ya- it feels really good to run long and hard again. I really missed going the distance. I need to continue to make time, at least once a week, to run long and hard.

Questions for You

  1. Do you bring pepper spray with you when you do a long run?
  2. How do you mentally get in the zone?

© 2012 sweatdaily

0 Comments

  1. slwebb November 8, 2012

    Probably not the pepper spray you are talking about, but when I used to live in Glacier National Park for every long run I would carry a bottle of water in one hand and a can of bear spray (huge can of pepper spray) in the other. Ran into plenty of bears but never had to spray one.


    • dorseyml November 9, 2012

      Oh my god… that is crazy that you ran into bears. Over the summer, here in DC, we had three different sexual assaults on two different trails. So when I run longer runs at an odd hour I just bring the pepper spray along.