Monday, 29 April 2013

Half Marathon Training - Week 2 Complete!

 Am still lying in my sweaty running gear, licking the last of my post-exericse Pad See Ew off my lips, and feeling good about finishing my 3rd week of training (including the pre-training week)!

Tips I've learnt from this week:

1. Fiber.
Don't know how to put this delicately, but fiber is great, and very important for healthy bowel movement. However, when you start increasing your jogging distances... well, the natural action of jogging also helps bowel movement. Therefore, when you are running more, it can be advantageous to start eating a little bit less fiber. How do you know if you have too much in your diet? You'll know when you go running :D

2. IT bands.
There is a very good reason I did my last post on illiotibial band syndrome. I haven't gotten to the painful stage, but I can definitely felt them tightening. Therefore, I spent a few minutes before my long run today rolling them out, and am trying to do some strengthening exercises while I'm brushing my teeth so that I do it regularly.

3. Breathing and focus.
So there are two ways to get through a long training session: the first is to try and distract yourself with something else. I, for example, have been watching TV while jogging. Unfortunately, there are a couple of problems with this. Sunday afternoon is full of really bad TV! I ended up watching an hour long ad for the Total Home Gym, which is really, really repetitive, but at least made me feel good that I was working out. So, it's not great when there is nothing to distract you, but it is also pretty bad for your form.
The other option I started trying out today after I got sick of the Total Home Gym ad, was to actually stay focused on my breathing and try to get myself in a meditative state. I've done a little bit of meditation before, and I know that it is supposed to be really good for your mind to give it down time to focus on absolutely nothing. (It's highly recommended for those who suffer from depression or obsessive compulsive thoughts to take up a repetitive sport such as swimming, rowing, cycling or jogging, in case you are wondering, just for this reason along with the added benefits of exercise).
So about 2/3 of the way through my long jog today, I flicked off the TV channel, though did leave it on FM radio for background music, and tried to maintain correct technique while breathing deeply and slowly. Surprisingly, I managed to drop 10 bpm off my heart rate doing this, and felt a while lot better by the end. Am definitely going to keep working on this and developing my ability to do it for longer and longer times.

The training for this week:

I have to admit, I moved all my training sessions around, but did complete them all.

Wednesday (not Tuesday) I did my 40 minute easy jog at 9km/h, though because of the need to go to the bathroom, and then just losing it, I did take two breaks. However, I jogged for a total of 40minutes that session.

Thursday I did my 30 minutes easy, and actually went for a jog along the river, which went for almost 40 minutes, but it was feeling good. However, speed varied quite a bit looking at my RunKeeper afterwards. Might want to work on that.

Friday I took as one of my days off.

Saturday (not Wednesday)I did what was listed as a 50 minute pace piece made up of 15 minutes warm up, 2 minutes race pace and 1 minute easy x 4, and then 14 minutes cool down. So I did all that, and then realised - that doesn't add up to 50 minutes! Even taking into account it might be 'repeat 4 more times', that's still not 50. I went through a few more of the sessions later on on the app, and it appears to do this a number of times. There is the pace session where you do 30 minutes warm up, 10 minutes goal pace and 2 minutes easy x 4, and then 15 minutes cool down, for a total of 1hour and 10 mins. hmm? Really? So, got to keep an eye on that.

Sunday today was a nice long slow jog for an hour. Wore my heart rate monitor for the first time, and started off around 145 which is pretty good, then midway climbed up to around 160 bpm. However, after I started focusing, it was dropping down to 150bpm, which is a great spot for me to stick at. I did wonder if I possibly should have been going a bit faster, but by the end I was still getting a stitch, so maybe it was just right.

Weight wise: My original aim was to lose 0.5 kgs a week. Last week I had gone up just a little bit to 76.9 (I also moved to weighing in pre-run which I think is a good idea). So, not a great start.
But this week pre-run I came in at 75.8! Yah! Not totally on goal, but catching up from last week. Just need to make sure it wasn't because I've dehydrated myself or anything like that. But often weight loss does take a few weeks to show on scales, and I've now increased my mileage quite a bit on what I was doing before training.

My biggest relief is that I'm past the 3 week mark, counting the pre-training week, which I am. I have an awful habit of coming down sick 2 weeks into a new program, and I have to admit that the beginning of this week I was feeling pretty seedy (which is why I moved my first jog to Wednesday, not Tuesday). But I'm now feeling good again.

Next week I'm going to start looking into energising methods such as gels for my longer run, now that I've broached the 1 hour. I'll let you know my research.

(This was meant to be posted on Sunday, but as I accidentally locked myself out of my apartment, you are getting it Monday night. For that full story, check out my post on 100 First Drafts.)

No comments:

Post a Comment