This is the week I go back and repeat weeks 7-11 of the Hal Higdon Half-Marathon plan, finishing with week 12 at the end of April. And the most eventful difference I tried to make is to go up the mile stretch with the hills instead of going down it. Within one mile, it goes up 100 feet and it doesn’t really go down. It is just one long big hill.
Ok, this is small potatoes, right? But you have to understand something about me. I grew up in a pancake flat town where I once did a twenty mile run and I think the elevation changed only 12 feet. For twenty miles. When I moved here I thought my runs were so hard, because ah! hills! Now when I go home, my runs are guaranteed 30 – 60 seconds faster (per mile) than what they are here. So the big, scary, hilly road is a big deal. For me.
Also, if running up the same hill over and over again is good enough for Kaci Lickteig, then it is good enough for me.
So yes, the week of the hill. Mostly I felt good. I’ve done this before, so the confidence was there. I was not worried I would not be able to do the mileage. It felt so routine. And that feeling, that beautiful routine feeling, was exactly what I have been wanting to reach.
3 / 20 : 3 miles, easy. IT Band & Core. Clamshells, fire hydrants, a million bridges.
3 / 21 : 5 miles. This felt like such a good run. Plus, I went about a minute faster on my fifth mile than I did on my fourth mile, just because I felt that good. 9:18/mile average. Lifted weights after: 3 x 10 kettle bell swings @ 20 lbs., 3 x 10 single-leg Romanian dead-lifts — no weight, balance first; 3 x 10 assisted pull-ups (about 72 lbs. assistance?), 3 x 10 push-ups. IT Band & Core. .4 mile run back to the house.
3 / 22 : SICK
3 / 23 : SICK
3 / 24 : I was sick for like a good two hours for this run, but I still did it. I felt good actually. 9 miles. My only goal was to stay under 10 minute pace for the most part, and I did, averaging 9:52 pace. It felt like it went by quickly. Ain’t no thang. Only nine miles.
3 / 25 : Still not feeling the best, but feeling better. 3 miles. Here’s something weird about running. Double-digit miles can fly by. Three miles are my least favorite runs. They feel so slow. Like, I just want to get it done and out of the way. Come on three milers, we need to make peace. Related: Shauna Niequist on three mile runs and rough drafts.
Total : 20ish happy miles.