I’m one week from my 16th half marathon. I’ve been following the gist of the Hanson’s [Half] Marathon Method. By that I mean doing the prescribed substance workouts (speed/strength and tempo) and long runs, when I can. Even using the word “following” is too much; I should say I’m loosely following. I’ve had an exciting and busy fall already and I didn’t want to make training my top priority. That was partly my attitude about the Brooksie Way half marathon last month – whatever happens, happens.

My fall has been filled with:

  • A fast 5k at the Detroit Zoo

    Can you tell I’m cold?
  • Detroit Lions game
  • Glow yoga (complete with Bluetooth headphones, glowsticks, and a really good DJ’s playlist)

    Glow Yoga – SO MUCH FUN
  • Yoga in the outfield at Comerica Park
  • Went to my first work [fun] golf outing

    Golf cart selfie
  • Went to the Star Wars Costume Exhibit at the Detroit Institute of Arts
  • Wanderlust on Belle Isle on the Detroit River (a mindful triathlon of sorts: an untimed 5k run, yoga, and meditation – which we left in the middle of the meditation part because it was too cold)
  • And even crafty events like a fall birch tree painting on pottery class (I can’t wait to get it back all glazed)

Over the last 12 weeks of training I’ve been averaging 25 miles/week. My original plan when I started training was to keep my weekly mileage in the low 40s, at a max. My max was in week 5, about two weeks before the Brooksie Way, when I reached 35 miles for the week. Going overboard hasn’t been an issue…

I’ve been keeping up with yoga at least once a week. And many of my weeks have had 2-3 rest days. This resorts back to my pre-Charlevoix marathon weeks when I always took rest days. My focus has been on quality over quantity. If I’m going to fall short on my goal miles for the week, so be it, I’m not going to go out for that seven mile run to get there (maybeee for two or three miles). I learned in marathon training that that was important to go out for the filler miles, get time on your feet, run it easy. If you haven’t picked up yet, I’m not stressing about this.

Now, after I said all this, you might be thinking, “What?! How unfair! How did she get that PR last month!? It must be so easy for her; she’s not even trying!” Ummm, it was hard. My finishing picture has my arms up over my head to help me breathe at end.

You can tell I’m smiling at the end!

I went to group speed sessions. When it was 88 F and humid, I ran almost 8 miles in a 10 x 400m workout and my goal was 1:50 (1:51, 51, 50, 49, 47, 47, 47, 48, 47, 47). I nailed a couple of workouts with the aid of fellow runners to help push when I could have easily quit after six.

Or instead of my weekend long run, I did a 6-mile tempo run that was the same distance with warmup and cooldown that my long run was supposed to be (10 miles-ish).

The week of my Brooksie Way race I only ran four times, none of which were more than 3.25 miles (no workouts). They were practically REST days. These are my examples of quality over quantity. Guess how many miles I ran the week after Brooksie Way? 12 miles! Aside from being sore the following two days, I wanted to take it easy after a well-earned PR and I didn’t really feel like running more.

Since the Brooksie Way, I’ve gotten in two more tempo runs in. The temps have been in the low 40s. It feels harder and harder to keep the pace up.

Yesterday’s tempo run averaged out to 8:28 and although it didn’t start very fast, I’m very happy with the negative splits. I did have to stop talking to Emily and let her do most of the talking as it was getting tough.

Now, I just have easy runs left and to plan my trip to Indianapolis. Do you have any must-do-in-Indy advice or Monumental race tips?