August Running Review

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Looking back on the month of August, I have a lot to be thankful for.  First off, I made it through yet another hot and steamy month of marathon training.  It is certainly a lot more difficult training for a Fall Marathon here in NC, than it is training for a Spring or Winter Marathon.  The heat saps my energy, and it takes a lot more will power to just get out everyday, and train.

In total, I ran just over 122 miles during the month of August.  That included 20 runs, all distances from a 5k, all the way up to a 15 miler.  My longest week was 37 miles.  I ran one race during the month.  A Half Marathon, my 5th of the year.  The Tromptown Runs was such a fun race.  It was a nice way to incorporate a race into the middle of my marathon training schedule.

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Sometimes during the month I felt like my pace training was paying off.  The heat is hard to battle, especially during August.  I tried several times to really focus on my pacing.  This is something I don’t do a lot of, unless I am focusing on a shorter distance race.  I felt like I should really try to do this, and should do it to more as a regular part of my training routine.  In general, my training paces average about 8:45 per mile.  I was able to pull two 5 mile runs below 8:30 pace.  One even at 8:20.

Other times during the month I felt sluggish, overtired, just trying to get the miles in.  Image

Have you ever felt like this?  Out of breath, listless, sluggish?  I felt like a hound many times this month.  My legs felt short, but still managed to barrel my way to the end of many training runs.  I have been able to do this because I have maintained focus on how this marathon training cycle will benefit me this Fall.

My September began strong.  Sunday I ran a 4 miler at a pace of 8:32.  I followed that yesterday with my longest training run of the year.  18 miles yesterday on a brutally humid day and about 80 degrees.  The run felt good for the most part, but I find long runs during training so tedious.  I do not enjoy them at all.  When I run long, I would rather do it during a race.  I find it very difficult to get pumped up for a long run during training.  I guess I just need to get used to that.  The body feels good today, post long run, so I know that training is paying off and that I will be ready to race in Asheville.  I am really looking forward to it, now just 25 days away.

The next few weeks will be more relaxed.  Not as many longer runs, allowing my legs to recover a bit.  I find that letting my body recover, and rest, is the best thing for me come race day.

How long do you let your body recover prior to racing?  Do you taper for two or three weeks prior to a marathon?  Suggestions gladly accepted.  Here’s to another great month of running.

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10 thoughts on “August Running Review

  1. I’m impressed that you ran through all the heat and humidity! I really dislike running in the type of weather consequently my running tapers off in August. I haven’t run a marathon but I have run several half marathons and I do taper for two to three weeks before the race. Have a great race in Asheville!

  2. Great job on the 18 miler! The super long runs do get tedious, especially alone, and the heat makes it worse, I think we all have some awesome fall running coming to us!

    I am planning a 3 week taper for my full. I do a two week taper for a half, and for my body find that more rest is better.

  3. I feel the same way as you about long training runs…they are terrible! Doesn’t bother me at all to run long in a race, but doing it by myself on a training run is pure torture. I did a 20 miler about a month ago in preparation for my November marathon, and I need to do another one in the next few weeks, but I really don’t want to!

    As for tapering, I don’t like that either. I used to not taper at all, and seemed to do just fine. Now, I sometimes take it easy the week of the race. I always take off the day right before the race, and sometimes take off 2 days before. Depends on how tired I am that week. Also depends on the race. For a 5k or 10k, I sometimes won’t take any extra days off.
    I think tapering has to vary from person to person; some people need it, some people don’t. I think you have to kind of use trial and error until you figure out what works best for you.

    Good luck!

    • Thanks for the feedback Gretchen. Yeah, long runs, not so much fun, especially in the heat. Two days later now, and I feel good, but not convinced yet that the 18 won’t be my last long run prior to the marathon. I’ll play it by ear. Also, weather permitting.

  4. Pingback: Picking up the Pace – Marathon Training | Mike Love's Tri Blog

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