Week 13: Marathon Training

This is getting so real! I keep thinking, I have soooo much time! and you know what… I do. But I don’t. I have enough time to prepare, but I’m getting far enough into the training that it’s starting to seem real. I’m actually going to run 26.2 miles.

Especially on my long runs, I keep wondering how in the world I will mentally prepare myself for that run. 26.2 miles. What will I think about? What will I listen to? I will need to compile the most bad-ass playlist ever in history! Then I should not listen to those songs for a month before the race. Keep it fresh, keep me on my toes, keep it exciting. I mean there’s SO much to worry about… I guess if I’m mainly worried about my playlist, that’s good – right? Oh, no. I should be worried about more. Should I? Is it bad that I’m not worried? I SHOULD BE WORRIED! RIGHT? Or should I be anxious? Or excited? What if I have stomach issues?! Here we go… the spiraling thoughts of a runner…

[ week 13 / 17 weeks until 26.2 ]

Sunday – Too Hot to Handle 15k! 9.43 miles, 1:23:38, 8:52 min/mile.

Boy am I proud of myself for this one. This is the furthest distance I’ve run since the half marathon that I signed up for on a whim before training started. Plus, I really ended up running closer to 13 or more miles because, long story short, because I parked so far away (and with what I thought was plenty of time) I ran at least 2 miles to the start line. So, as you can imagine, I had to also get back to my car… which took me over an hour to walk/run back to (maybe it was more than 2 miles each way). The race was great, though! Scenic, great volunteers, not TOO hot… feel free to read my review of the race here.

I was already hot, sweaty and ready for water when I crossed the start line which made the run seem a little longer (as my Nike+ app was telling me I was at mile 9, I was only at mile 7 of the race). But this little hiccup didn’t ruin the day. Once I got into the race, I just focused on my music and the scenery and took it one mile at a time. Rather than thinking “I have 5 more miles left…” I just think about making it to each mile marker, then when even that seems difficult, I just think about the next water stop (luckily they had them about every half mile due to the intense heat expected during this mid-summer race). Once I was finished, I felt great. Sub-9 minute mile average pace and I was happy. Very happy.

After that and the hour+ walk/jog back to my car and I was POOPED. Yes. Pooped. I sat in my car a minute until I built up the energy to drive home. I then managed to shower and lay in bed. So I’d say it was overall wonderful yet exhausting (as it should be, right?)!


Monday – Rest day!

I was a little stiff today but my body and legs actually didn’t feel too bad. I thought I’d be a little more sore considering my mileage yesterday. My lower abs were sore and right hamstring stiff, other than that all OK!

Tuesday – 3.15 miles, 28:21, 9:00 min/mile.

3 easy miles. Still a tad stiff today from the long run Sunday in the hamstrings and a little tired but felt overall OK. Started to feel good after 2nd mile – I didn’t even know I had reached 3 miles until I looked down at my watch at a little over 3! That’s always a good feeling.


Wednesday – 3 miles, 26:49, 8:55 min/mile.

3 easy miles again today and felt even better than yesterday. Even though it was 99 degrees with a heat index of 108, it really wasn’t too bad! Legs were still a little stiff (robot legs), even though I was stretching a lot, but I think I loosened up a lot after this run.


Thursday – Tempo run – 6 miles, 54:35, 9:06 min/mile.

I tried to wake up early and get this run in before the heat of the day (because, ya know, 6 miles…) and I DID wake up. At 4:30am – which is when I’d have to get up and go for my run and still be at work on time. I got up and started getting ready for my run but realized it was still dark out and wouldn’t be light until 6:30am. In order to get to work at 7:30 am, there was no fitting it in before work. (I don’t run in the dark).

So, I went later in the day. It was almost 100 degrees. I didn’t look, but I’m sure the heat index was well above 100. My new Orangemud Endurance pack saved my life (full review on this coming soon). Seriously. It was my first time using it, and it came in the mail just in time. I have never had a bladder hydration pack… it’s a game changer! Other than gushing sweat, I felt good on this run. I wasn’t stiff any more from the 15K. I was just hot and tired. The last mile or two were particularly though, but I pushed through.


Friday – 4.05 miles, 38:13, 9:26 min/mile.

4 easy miles. I actually ran in the morning (yay!) to beat the heat and it was amazing! It was only about 85 degrees… I still got a good sweat going but it felt nice to get up with the sun and run.

I also did a Gold’s Fit class at noon (so I had some rest after my run) and it was pretty challenging on my upper body strength. In fact, as I write this 3 days later, I am still sore in my arms, chest, back, and abs. So, I’d say I got a good workout!


Saturday – Rest!


Total miles for the week (running only) – 25.63

THANK YOU to my coach, Andrew Simmons for all of my workouts, advise on what to do when things do or don’t go as planned, and all of his hard work! I have improved SO, so much already and have him to thank for it. I truly would not be running sub-9 minute miles for 9+ miles if it weren’t for him. Thank you for aiding in my growth and allowing me to surprise myself in my capabilities!

Are you training for an upcoming race?

Do you have a favorite hydration system while running? Why?

What’s your favorite distance to run?

Thanks for reading!

20 thoughts on “Week 13: Marathon Training

  1. My favorite hydration system – the park water fountains so I don’t have to carry anything! But if I do have to carry, Nathan makes great handhelds, belts and packs. Great job on your longest run since the half!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Nice!! There aren’t any fountains where I run… There’s one at the park but I’m not sure I’d drink out of it (I’m sure it’s not as nice as your park!) 🙂 thanks so much!!!


  2. Great week Jenna especially during these brutal hot days. It’s supposed to be 95+ degrees this whole week! Ugh! Love the yoga poses! Week 7 of Chicago Marathon begins today…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Awesome! Best of luck with your training! Sounds like you’re doing great – week 3 and talking about 15 miles 🙂 My longest “long run” is this weekend at 10 miles! Thank you for the encouragement and kind words!


  3. Great job Jenna! Wow! I love that you have sub-9 minute pace at that distance and in this heat!! You are going to have such a great fall race! You will probably get much faster in the fall when it is cooler. I always run with a handheld bottle. That way I can drink when I want to…when I can breathe and can drink as much water as I want. I refill at water stations when I start getting low without slowing my pace too much. Always carrying a water bottle keeps me consistent with my training/races. I trained/ran my first marathon two years ago carrying a 32 ounce Gatorade bottle like the football players use. Lol. I don’t do that anymore, but it did come in handy on long runs when I didn’t have any water source! (I wanted to keep my training/race consistent!) Well, you have inspired me to get out in the hot, humid night and get my 3.5 mile run in. It is such a great idea that you are blogging about your training experience. It will help others for years to come!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, thank you so much! That truly means a lot! And that is too funny about the big Gatorade bottle! Smart of you to keep it consistent, though! I do like the handhelds, too (they’re easy to grab and go) – but where I run there aren’t water stations or fountains so, once I’m out, I’m out! I usually just get a little taste anyway to attempt to cool off. In fact, before a few months ago I had never even run with water (just never bothered). So, any amount of water has been nice and the bladder hydration vest is like a dream! In fact, the first time I used it I guess I got a little excited and drank TOO much water and got a stomach cramp. Well I’m SO glad I’ve inspired you to get out there in the heat… just be careful! Thanks again!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Congrats on a great race and training week in the heat…that is brutal temperatures to be running in…we have been very lucky up here so far, still getting to run in the 60’s-70’s for the most part though it will warm up soon. This year, I picked up my first trail vest as a hydration system and love it for my long ones. I have a nathan and a camelback – I got a crazy good deal at a race expo on the camelback which is how I ended up with 2 but my wife really likes them too so it worked out. I was a bit skeptical but on any run over 10-12 miles, they are all I will use, they can both hold a bladder in the back and have room for 2 more 20oz bottles, plus pockets for phones/gels etc. And, if you need any music ideas, check out my motivational music article every Monday – just a fun music playlist we chat about on the blog!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah I feel like I’m in a dream just thinking about 60’s and 70 degree weather! I do like the Camelbak handhelds, too. So easy to grab and go. But I hold them in my left hand and I feel like mine are made for the right hand because it feels a bit awkward. Nothing major, though! And yes those bladder packs are great for long runs… especially in this heat! Thank you for the congratulations and for the music recommendation – I’ll definitely check it out!


  5. Run girl run! YouTube has some great free yoga practices for runners but you probably already know that lol. Awesome blog! I’m rooting for you from my yoga mat 😀 Big hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much!! I will look into the YouTube videos… There are just so many out there! Any suggestions are appreciated 🙂 thanks again and I truly appreciate the kind words!


  6. Hey Jenna,off Instagram.. Work, school, running-It takes time away. And honestly,I love running , but just can’t talk about it all dat at this point :(.However,I just wanted to check in and see how you were doing. Looks like all is good! Hang in your in the middle of that battle with the heat,distance ect… Don’t sweat the 100 degree readings, word is with the common core math it’s really 98 :). Bad ass Playlist- A teacher from Texas -Don’t go too bad ass on us LOL.Playlist- You wont need one for THE RACE. The sights and thrill and feel of the marathon is the sound track Ms Texas- Live it ,\ take it all in! I’m killing my runs-up to 60 a week. My last marathon -Go large or I go home lol. Good luck and keep up the great work. I will drop in and say hi in a few weeks. STAY TOUGH!!!!
    The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will. Vince Lombardi


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much, Joey! Great to hear from you! Yes all is well… Currently in CO loving the cool weather runs. Glad you’re killing your runs… and I guess I’ll try not to make my playlist TOO bad ass 🙂 great quote… Thanks so much for the encouragement. I really appreciate it and hope all is well with you!


  7. Meant off twitter LOL. I did not mean to block you – was muting and figured I was closing the account anyway so I left it. Things are really going well on all fronts-I will be Dr Joey by Sept – ( If we count Criminal Justice as a real degree LOL). I actually had three Lumbar Epidural Steroid Injections for Low Back Pain over the course of 6 weeks, and a shot in my left knee.It all worked good enough to carry me through November! Not complaining, did not miss any training days, and never had a running injury that was not caused from work.Moved to CO or just went for vacation / training? Anyway enjoy that cool weather.I head for the dread mill when it hits the high 90’s. I’m telling you it is an all for me- already gave the money to Fred’s team so I have to do this for the peeps that donated.Regarding that playlist,I feel better, was thinking you went Gothic on us LOL.Ok Mrs Texas,I know you are locked and loaded for the rest of you’r training. ENJOY THE RIDE !


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much! I’m glad all is going well… That’s pretty amazing that you didn’t miss any training even while doing injections and going to that top 101 to become a doctor!!! Really, that’s an amazing accomplishment. I’m just in CO for vacation – I usually come here in the summers. Yeah, I despise that dreaded dread mill! I guess I can deal with the heat for now. Thanks again and I just updated last week… Let you know how CO went on the next update! Hope to hear from you again and best of luck with your studies and running… Sounds like you’re doing great!


  8. I definitely admire everyone that can run at such hot temperatures. I’m such a wuss. If it’s anything about 80, I go run on the treadmill in an airconditioned gym. Great job and keep it up!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Just depends on which you consider the lesser of the evils, I guess! I can’t stand the dreadmill, I consider it on 100+ degree days… Always opt for outside, though. It’s probably better to do it indoors! The heat really takes a toll! Thanks so much! I truly appreciate the encouragement. Same to you – keep it up and happy running!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Great race and medal too! I had trouble the other day at just 77F with the baking sun on me continuously. I am in the UK and we’re not used to the heat I reckon.
    I have a water belt with 2 small 170ml bottles and a middle pocket that only cost me £ 11.99 on Amazon it’s by More Miles and I’ve done 29 marathons and every training run for 18months with it! For ultras with little aid I use my 2L Camelbak backpack which is amazing! Good luck for your next run!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much! Awesome! I actually just got something like that on Amazon – the brand is “Stay fit running co.” it was $9.99, basic fabric belt with lots of pockets. Probably very similar to what you have and I have a feeling it’s going to be really handy! Thanks for the info and hang in there… I know the heat is no fun!


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