Marathon Training: Week 2 

Last week started out as a strong training week. I was feeling good and picking up my pace. I’m still taking it easy and keeping all my runs around 3 miles and running 4 times a week. Coming back from a month off, I want to make sure that I am injury free 10 months down the road when my training will be at its peak.

Sunday was another story. I went for an evening run on the treadmill and it was hard. At 0.63 miles I felt like I couldn’t go on. I had to take a walk, listen to my body and decide if it was a mental thing or if my body just shouldn’t run. I started feeling a chest pain and thought, I’m going to walk some more. The problem is, if there is another runner on a treadmill beside me, I just want to keep going. I’m competitive like that even though they have no idea if that was my easy run, fast run or long run day. I decided to run at an easy pace and just make it to 2 miles and call it a day. At 2 miles, I was still dragging my feet but I could maintain the steady easy pace so I kept pushing until I hit 2.75 miles and I sprinted for the last 0.35 mile. 

Fast forward to Tuesday of this week when my body said, “Speed work, what’s that again?!”


I hit the indoor track for a speed run and that is when I could feel myself out of running shape that I was in during the 2015 racing season. I knew I was going to feel it after taking the month of December really easy, but I didn’t think it would be as hard as I took it. I went into my usual 5:00 min/km pace group and felt strong for the first few laps.


And then it ht me. I really had to go to the bathroom. In all my years of running, this has only happened to me about 3 times.Then I thought – what if I have to go during a marathon? Will I have to go into the bushes like other runners? I couldn’t get my mind away from my busting kidneys. For the first time in my group running history – I sprinted to the bathroom during a run.


I came back feeling relieved and ready to run and determined to get as fast as I once was. I know this is going to take time and it won’t be an overnight process. The next 10 months are going to be filled with running and I don’t regret the break. I’m going to have to work hard but my body will be back to where it was in no time and running longer distances than ever before. Once I started to get a pasty mouth, I knew I also need to get A LOT better at hydrating. This has always been my downfall. You should always finish your runs strong and the last 200m I am happy to say were my strongest thanks to my beauty of a pacer Michelle. She knows when I need that extra kick of motivation and just has to say, “can you dig deeper and go a little faster for this one?” I didn’t even respond and just picked up the pace.


In 5 weeks, I’m determined that this pace will start to feel easier again.

Monday: 2.5 miles @ avg 9:03/mile

Tuesday: Rest

Wednesday: Rest

Thursday:  3.21 miles @ avg 9:05/mile

Friday: 3.2 miles @ avg 10:00/mile

Saturday: Rest

Sunday: 3.1 miles @avg 10:49/mile

Weekly miles: 12.1 miles

January miles: 15.2 miles

Marathon Monday

Monday: OFF

Tuesday: OFF

Wednesday:  3 miles @ 8:22/mile

Thursday: OFF

Friday: OFF

Saturday: 3.2 miles @ 8:17/mile

Sunday: 9.33 miles @8:56/mile

Total miles: 15.53 miles

Last week was a hot one. Running in spicy heat is extremely hard and so important for fall race season. On humid hot days, depending how I’m feeling and if I’m very hydrated, I push myself to run as hard as my training plans tells me. If I can still maintain around an 8 minute/mile pace in the scorching heat, running a race in October  will feel like a breeze! But it’s also important to know when you are pushing yourself too hard.


Some important reminders that I live by when running in the summer:

  1. Stay hydrated before you run. Drinking water is important to hydration but you can also get your water intake through fruits and vegetables. I like to drink NUUN throughout the day to keep my electrolytes balanced.
  2. Plan routes that run past water stations. If you don’t have water stations, you can plant your own water bottles on your route or stop at restaurants along the way that offer free water.
  3. Know when to stop. I’m all about pushing yourself past your comfort zone but in the hot heat, it’s important to check in with yourself. If you are experiencing hot and cold flashes, stop sweating or feel dizzy, it’s time to stop and seek medical help.
  4. Slow down and take frequent walk breaks. When you run on hot days, you risk heat illness. Everyone’s body reacts differently to heat so you really have to listen to your body and know when to slow down. Nothing is worse than being sick after a run.
  5. Wear sunscreen. Sunscreen is so important, especially for runners. When you are exposing yourself to the sun for a long period of time, you will can sun damage. Just because you have tanned skin doesn’t mean that you won’t get burnt or worse develop skin cancer. Throw on some SPF before heading out the door.

This week, instead of focusing on craming in runs, I focused on quality heat runs. On Wednesday’s run, I was ready to stop a few times but instead, I slowed down and kept a steady pace to catch my breath. For the first time in a long time, I hoped for lights to turn red so that I could stop and get a break. Water was my best friend after that run.

Saturday’s run started out cool and progressively got hotter. I did have to take two water breaks during my run. At 3.2 miles, I stopped at Starbucks for some free water and then at 6 miles, I stopped at home. After 9.33 miles and feeling great I decided it was time to officially register for the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Half Marathon.

scotibank toronto waterfront marathon

My goal is to break 2 hours to get a new PR.

My ultimate goal: cross the finish line in 1:50:00.