The Daily Grind.
These few weeks of training have been a grind. A necessary grind. The day-in-day-out logging of miles. Not a lot of variety in distance or pace. Just getting the miles done. The base built. This coming week I’m starting to add a little “speed” back in with a few workouts, so that’ll mix things up a little bit. As much as my body needs the rest of some easy miles, this past week it was a bit of a struggle to get it done. Mentally. You’ll see some slower-than normal paces because of this. My legs and body, for the most part, feel good. Great, even. Feeling just a little strain from adding back some strength and stability work. Definitely have needed to keep my mantra in mind. This is the “live it” part. Live the daily grin to get where I want to be.
This is a good time to mention the importance of journaling to me. Sure, in this day and age most of us use some sot of technology that tracks everything for us. Distance. Pace. Heart rate. I use Garmin. And, love it. It tracks everything I need, and more. Everything but how I feel. Recording how you feel before, during, and after a workout is important. It’s how lots of early training strategies were developed. It’s how you, as an individual, will know what works for you. And, what doesn’t. The training logs I share here, have a bit of how I feel. In my journal, I occasionally include more details. Sometimes not. Currently, I’m using a journal format where I have my planned workout(s), food (when I’m tracking it), and actual workout. Distance. Pace. Heart Rate. How did I feel? Any other notes. I used to track weather and some other details, but I didn’t find a whole lot of value in that. I, do still make note of “extreme” conditions. Heavy wind. Heat. Cold. It took me a while to find a format that I liked, so if you’ve tried it and abandoned, give it another shot.
Why journal? It gives me a sense of accomplishment. I can see what I have done. Own those miles. That work. Even when it’s not perfect. When it’s not as much as planned. The notes can help me understand why. Garmin doesn’t do that. For example, last week, I took an unplanned day off. Why? I was listening to my body. It said rest. That’s in my journal. Today I took off. Why? I had a touch of an illness this morning. Also in my journal. So, rather than looking back later and wondering why I skipped a planned day, I’ll know. It also helps with confidence. Not sure I’m ready for a race? Look back at those hard workouts I nailed. Definitely ready! It’s also a great tool to learn how to adjust training based on performance trends.
Recently, as I’ve felt the grind setting in, starting to lose motivation. Flip through the old journal. Had a realization. Nutrition matters. I know that. But, looking at my notes from when I went sugar-free (well, free-ish of processed, refined sugar), I felt great. I had been trudging through workouts, feeling heavy and tired. Then, I felt better. Lighter. Quicker. Easier. Cause and effect? Maybe. One data point is not significant (I am a scientist). But, as of today, I’m trying it again. We will see if “eat better, feel better” will help me through the grind.
Training Log May 21-27, 2018: Planned, 60 miles. 54.1 miles for the week.
Paces: BF = by feel; E (easy) = 8:08-8:36
Monday – planned: 8BF
6.1mi @ 9:03. A little tired from the long weekend miles.
Tuesday – planned: 6BF + strength (upper)
6.0mi @ 9:46 in AM. Mentally tough treadmill miles.
2.6mi @ 8:32 in PM. Felt good! A little altitude effect (in New Mexico).
Strength: 2 set of 6 reps each: Incline flys, lateral arm raises, bicep curls
Wednesday – planned: 8E + stability
4.1mi @ 9:13. More mental struggle on the ‘mill.
Stability: 10x leg swings, 10x hip raises, 10x side hip raises, 12x kickbacks, 12x stability ball leg curls, 12x one-legged deadlifts, 12x side lunges
Thursday – planned: 6BF + strength (lower)
6.0mi @ 9:56. Drudging through some treadmill miles.
2.5mi @ 8:33 in PM. Nice to be outside! Skipped the lower strength because a little sore in glutes from yesterday.
Friday – planned: 6E + stability
Saturday – planned: 14BF + stability
12.1mi @ 9:38. Switched with Sunday mileage because got a late start and it was warm!
Stability (from Fri): 12x side lunges, 20x knee crunches, 12x adductor leg raises, 20x leg cross-overs, 10x knee tucks, 10x discus-thrower, 10x standing hurdles
Sunday – planned: 12R
14.8mi @ 9:36. Felt okay. Easy going, but getting it done.
Stability: 10x standing hurdles, 12x side leg raises, 12x firehydrants, 10x jackknives, 20x torso twists, 10x leg swings
Happy Memorial Day to all. Take time to remember the sacrifices of the many.