I’m still deciding whether to marathon or not to marathon but training as if I am…that means a mid-week mid-length run! I have been fudging my training plan quite a bit over the last several weeks- since I haven’t yet decided whether or not to run the race in 2 months I don’t feel as serious about nor do I feel my runs are as necessary.
This Wednesday was my first time completing the mid-week mid-length run…7 miles! It was also a week where we hit lows in the 40’s after several weeks of mornings in the 50’s and 60’s here in North Florida. Since I try and run my long training runs on Saturdays my mid-week mid-length run falls on a Tuesday morning. I’m currently two weeks away from my first half of the year and am *trying* to qualify for a certain seed for the Gate River Run in March- that means a 7:24 pace…for 13.1 miles (riiiiight!). I’m a decently fast running, averaging 8:15 for 3-5 miles and 8:20 to 8:35 for 6-10 miles so to get down to a 7:24 pace (scares the heck out of me even seeing that in writing!) I decided to run a “double bridges run.” In downtown Jacksonville we have two main bridges- the Main St Bridge and the Acosta Bridge, a “bridges run” or “running the bridges” means you run over one then swing around sort distance (.25 to .50 miles) then run over the second. That means that my ‘double bridges run’ is one loop over the two bridges and ten around for a second loop over the same two bridges! I happen to live near these bridges so I run to and from as well- equaling up to about 7 to 7.20 miles! In the past running inclines like this has resulted in a faster pace for me when running flat courses so I figured WHY NOT?!
Overall the run was a lot better than I expected it to be! The first loop over the bridges was definitely not fun but surprisingly, the second loop was MUCH easier! The training plans I follow for my marathons (well, the only one I’ve done- last year) are the Hal Higdon training plans. Last year I of course used the “Beginner 1” training plan but this year I’m following the “Intermediate 1” plan. The Hal Higdon plans are definitely heavy on the running but since running is what perks me up for the day and gets/keeps me positive I like it! Of course these training plans call for not only a mid-week mid-length run but a mid-length “day before the long run” run! Which means not only an intense workout mid-week, but one on Friday morning as well!