Chicago Marathon Training: Week 7 – My 16 mile redemption!

I did it, 40 miles in a single week AND a rockin’ 16-mile long run! I spent the entire week anxious and nervous about my long run and it couldn’t have gone better. I had never run more than 14 miles and, well, that run didn’t go too well. Going even longer seemed like a stretch, and I was starting to question if a marathon was even possible. After my long run, I actually felt like I could do it.

I was pretty bad about taking pictures this week, so here’s a photo of my perfect cat!

Isn't she adorable?

Isn’t she adorable?

Monday: The usual rest day after a hard week!

Tuesday: Hill repeats (6 miles) in AM + Social run (3.2 miles) in PM

I got up early and ran out to my usual hill and went up and down 6 times before heading home. It felt great. Is it weird that I like hill repeats? It’s one of my favorite workouts. In the PM, I went on a social run with the Running Company. I took it a little fast, given the extreme heat (8:43/mi).

Wednesday: Yoga – no running

I was going to go running in the morning, but a storm came through. It was Frank’s 31st birthday and we were celebrating with some friends in the evening. I just decided to take the day off and just do some yoga. Frank wanted to try a pizza place in town that had a vegan pizza. We are vegetarian, not vegan, but we try to eat vegan when possible. This pizza, however, was SO BAD! Like… the worst. The cheese tasted like gum. Afterwards, we checked out a new brewery in town

Thursday: 7 miles easy (9:49/mi)

I went out in the afternoon, and it was blazing hot outside. It felt good, despite the heat, because I was well hydrated. On my way back, there was a parade going on outside my house. I live in downtown, so whenever anything is up in town, it’s usually happening on my street.

Friday: Hiking – no running

Frank and I went out for a hike at a state park about an hour away. We camped that night and got up early for some trail running the next morning.

Saturday: 8-mile trail run (11:00/mi)

Wilson State Park is about an hour away from Manhattan and is known for some great mountain bike trails. It’s probably the prettiest place I’ve been in Kansas. I hoped on the mountain bike trails and they were tough, but awesome! I passed a few mountain bikers along the way. There were beautiful cliffs along a lake and I saw tortoise!

Sunday: 16-mile LSD (9:34/mi)

I got up early to beat the heat, but it was still about 85 degrees and overcast. There were a few miles here or there that were a struggle, but for the most part, I felt great. I took the first 12 miles at around 10/mi pace, one minute faster than my intended marathon pace. I decided to just go by feel for the last 4 miles and not hold back. I easily hit marathon pace and for the final mile kept an 8:30/mi pace. I needed this run, and it gave me the confidence I needed heading into some of the peak training for Chicago.

This next week is a big cutback for me. I go from running 40 miles to only about 28. I’m basically treating this as a taper week for my half marathon on Saturday. Look out for a post on my goals for my upcoming race, which I am in the process of writing. I’m just not 100% sure what I am looking to get out of the race.

Do you ever find that your confidence wanes? What do you do to fix it?

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12 thoughts on “Chicago Marathon Training: Week 7 – My 16 mile redemption!

  1. AMAZING long run and such a great week!! I find that every few weeks, I have a bad week or two and my confidence takes a hit. Usually I need stretching, an ice bath, some rest, and a good run after the recovery to remind myself why I do this and get it back!

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    • Yeah, bad weeks really take a toll on my confidence. I tend to have a bit of imposter syndrome as it is, so bad weeks can really mess with my head. This run really helped. I’m actually excited for my 20-milers.

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  2. WAY TO GO!!!! I’m so happy for you! 🙂

    40 miles in a week is such a big milestone and so is running a 16-miler! I think one of the most fun things about training for your first marathon are all of the awesome milestones you collect along the way – each one making you feel awesome!

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    • It’s fun hitting these new milestones! I’m going to have a 50-miler in the near-ish future and I’m pretty excited to see that on my training log. You’re doing pretty great too on your training!

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  3. Awesome job on your 16 miles! My training plan calls for 16 this weekend, which is the furthest I will have run yet. I’m not feeling very confident about it, especially since I failed at 15 last week. I’ve really been getting in my own head lately, so I’m trying to psych myself up to kick ass this weekend.

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    • Don’t worry about the last bad run. Just try to think of this as a new adventure! You are gonna PR no matter what, and new distances are always so fun. That’s what I told myself to psych out for my last long run. 😉

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  4. Yeaaaaaaa! 16 is always my sweet spot too! I LOVE that distance. It makes you feel so tough, without really beating yourself up. Awesome week! You’re gonna kill this marathon!

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    • Haha! I hope so! I have moments of clarity when it seems like running a marathon is completely within reach, and then I have moments when I feel like it is an impossible uphill battle. But I think we all feel that way sometimes…

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  5. “Those” runs are amazing. The ones that are 100% confident building, they really get you pumped for the future runs. I have those every time I run trails, it reminds me why I run. The peace that comes with running.

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