Time is flying! It’s hard to believe that in 9 weeks I will have finished my fourth Boston Marathon. It’s hard to believe it especially considering we just had a Nor’Easter blow through New Hampshire dumping loads of snow on us! Even though there are still 9 more weeks, one can only begin to wonder what the weather will be like on race day. If it’s snowy and cold I will be prepared! But know the New England weather swings and what often happens on race day it will probably hot and humid! I love all of the snow but training in it can be quite tricky and last winter we were spoiled with mild temperatures and clear roads making training for a spring marathon a breeze. This year routes must be planned based on the prevalence of slow plows, narrowed roads and general safety issues due to the wintry conditions.
I did luck out and squeeze in my long run on Sunday. The first half of my 16 miler was snowflake free. There was already quite a bit of snow on the ground from snow earlier in the week but the roads weren’t too bad. I got a bit of a late start due to having a lazy Sunday morning with the kids in our PJ’s celebrating Valentine’s Day a little earlier and eating a big family breakfast. The bonus about starting late is that the Boston Marathon start times are about mid-morning so this is a good way to acclimate myself to the eating schedule for race day. It can be a tough change to have to run through lunch time. So, we’ll just call this race day prep! It was only around 12 degrees out but there wasn’t much wind so windchill was not an issue today! Even still with 12 degree temps I didn’t dare make the mistake of a few weeks ago when I froze my a$$ off due to under-layering. For this run I wore my Skirt Sports Heartbreaker Skirt, Smart Wool Ski Socks, Hoka One One Challenger ATR, and 3 layers on top (not including sports bra) to include a fleecy lined shirt, a thin pull over from New Balance with a hood and a North Face light thermoball layer (Thanks TNFLOCALS!). To top it off I wore my SmashFest Queen beanie which is thin but fleece lined. The only thing I wished I had brought along were some clear lensed glasses to protect my eyes once the snow started to fly.
One issue that did crop up during the run was that the tubing for my hydration pack and the mouth piece froze. Despite filling my pouch with warm water within 3 miles I couldn’t drink from my hydration pack without stopping to open my pack and drink from the bladder itself while attempting to not spill water all over myself. I am guessing I should have made the water hotter. I am also going to try to retrofit my pack with a neoprene sleeve that I have on another hydration pack that is winter specific. Have you ever encountered this issue. What have you done to remedy it? Another thing that often happens when running in this kind of cold is that any energy gels such as GU will change consistency and become very thick. I actually enjoy them a bit more when they are cold like this. The Skratch Labs Hydration mix that I was carrying in an extra bottle also turned into a cold slushy and was frozen by the time I got home.
As the run progressed I knew that this would not be one where I would be hitting any smoking fast paces. The plan was to run the first half somewhat easy and the second half at marathon pace. Once the snow started to really come down the surface that I was running on quickly became slippery and it was like running in sand . . . only 8 more miles to go. I had already bagged trying to hit any specific pace and just ran to enjoy the run. I felt great for most of the run and despite the heavily falling snow and rapidly deteriorating road conditions I had a great run. Several people I know drove by my twice during the run and I am pretty sure they thought I was nuts. One neighbor stopped me with three miles to go and asked if I needed a ride home . . . Nope, I’m actually enjoying this! Organic Runner Dad even texted me a few times during the run asking if I needed a rescue . . . No, I’m all set. The last few miles were a slow slog for sure as this run always ends with a giant hill that is almost a full mile but despite that I made it back! 16 miles of snow running “fun” and another big run in the bag for Boston!
As far as other workouts go I got a bonus swim in the pool because the road conditions were terrible all week. I had to abandon my running field test at the end of the week because it was snowy and the plows were out. With no indoor track as an option I hit the pool instead. One of my pool workouts this week had be doing a tough pull buoy workout where you are essentially spending most of the time swimming with only your arms. Let me tell you my arms and shoulders were so tired the next day! In case you missed it, earlier this week I published a post with some great swimming drills to try. You can read my post in my Triathlon Talk Series.
Other than training hard this past week, we are still working on helping Organic Runner Girl to feel better. She continues to have a lingering illness post pneumonia which could just be the virus hanging on. I am hoping she is back to her old self soon. This is when being a mom can be so tough and it is hard not to worry. We are currently doing some investigative blood work but so far there is no specific answer to why she is feeling so crummy. So the plan continues to be a lot of extra rest (we’ve had to cut out pretty much all extra-curricular activities), plenty of fluids, fresh air, lots of healthy food including plenty of protein and to just wait and see. I am continuing to keep a symptom journal to see if we have any clues. During some of our downtime at home we adventured into making dumplings from scratch with a recipe from Raddish Kids (a kids cooking club that sends you recipes, cooking tips and tools once a month) that also came with a dumpling maker. We had a blast making dumplings together and the recipe was delicious and easy to do once you had the ingredients on hand. We also enjoyed some snow play including some epic night time sledding on our big hill behind the barn.
This weeks Boston Marathon Training
Here is a break down of my Boston Marathon training during the week:
- 2/6-Rest Day
- 2/7-5.5 Mile Fartlek Run, 1:00 on 1:00 off, 2100 Yards of steady state swimming.
- 2/8-45 Minute base run on the treadmill
- 2/9-1 Hour Bootcamp, 2.34 mile easy run
- 2/10- 2200 yd swim with pull buoy drills
- 2/11-30 minute spin on the bike trainer
- 2/12-16 mile endurance run in the Nor’Easter
What are you currently training for? Did you have any setbacks or have any successes to share this week? Do you like to run when it is snowing outside?