Week 21: Marathon Training

Long runs are getting longer and I’m feeling more and more confident with the thought of the whole “running 26.2 miles” thing. I’m more thankful than ever for my coach, Andrew Simmons, who has helped me reach this confidence level.

I am also thankful for my friends and family for their encouragement and for being understanding when I’m constantly tired and hungry – and cranky because I’m tired and hungry. That means you! Those of you who have been following my journey, or are just starting to follow my journey mean so much. It’s amazing how much you guys motivate me!

Let’s dig in!

[ week 21 / 9 weeks until 26.2Β ]

Sunday – Long run. 14.01 miles, 2:14:40, 9:37 min/mile.

Despite my overall feeling of confidence with long runs lately, today I didn’t think I’d make it. The first 6-9 miles flew by. I thought, I got this! This is easy! Well, perhaps I jinxed myself because miles 11-14 were grueling. Or, as I bluntly put int in my journal “miles 11-4 were hell.” My hips were tired, I was tired, I was thirsty, hungry, and hot (fairly warm morning, about 90 degrees), and I wanted to stop. At mile 12 I was having doubts. My stomach wasn’t feeling great… I just felt like poo. But I’m not one to quit – especially being so close to my goal – so I pushed through those last 2 miles and wound up at a Starbucks with a drink in each hand on the walk home. It felt nice to have something to sip on since I didn’t being enough water and didn’t being my ice cold gels on this run (forgot). I made it home, opened the door, and laid on the floor. I did it!


Monday – Rest and recovery!


Tuesday – Tempo run. 6.01 miles, 52:53, 8:48 min/mile.

This one was tough. It was hot and I ran out of water (again). The heat is really getting to me. My right hip flexor was a bit sore/stiff along with some other little ab muscles from the long run so I started off very slow. They shook out after the first mile (yay) and though I felt kind of bad to start (maybe from the heat?), I felt better as I went. Did 2 miles easy, 3 miles of hills @ 5K pace, 1 mile easy.


Wednesday – Easy miles. 3 miles, 30:03. 10:01 min/mile.

When I said easy, I meant easy. I took it really easy today as my body needed it. My hip flexor area was still tender but shook out after I was practically finished with my run (at about mile 2). I just went really, really easy today. It felt good.


Thursday – Easy miles. 5.1 miles, 49:28, 9:44 min/mile.

More easy miles. 5 miles really flew by today. I had a great run and my legs/hip flexor/etc all seemed back to normal today. AND I became an official BibRave PRO today since my singlet cane in the mail!


Friday – Easy miles. 4 miles, 38:19, 9:34 min/mile.

My right knee was a bit cranky for the first few miles, then it was both knees, then they were both fine by mile 4. Nothing major – probably just a bit stiff. I need to be better about stretching and foam rolling! Felt good afterwards!


Saturday – Rest and recovery!

Total running miles for the week – 32.1
Thank you for reading and for all of your support! I appreciate you!

How often do you stretch?

Do you foam roll? before runs? after?

Do you do “warm up drills” before a run? every run? long runs only?

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24 thoughts on “Week 21: Marathon Training

  1. hellyontherun says:

    I roll and stretch every. single. day. I’ve found that it’s been HUGE in me being able to recover from running 6 times a week. I do warm up drills before every run but sometimes I don’t do the whole thing, but I always try and do something.

    Great week and I like your recovery style πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Just about Dr Joey says:

    Hey Ms Jenna it sounds like you’r in the mist of marathon training and getting it done! Again,you’re feeling the effects of doing more running then your body has ever experienced. I know you know physiological aspects of the body learning to utilize stored fuel on the long runs. Trust me, I’am not a fan of the 18 plus workouts. However, I tough them out. The heat is killing you now but is money in the bank for a Vegas Marathon. You’re really preparing the body for that race. Bill Rodgers used to keep the heat up in his apartment to prepare for hot weather workouts. You are doing this just by being luck enough to live in Texas πŸ™‚ . My training is going well – had another 70 mile week. The rest week paid off!

    I have never stretched in my life. Not recommending this for everyone.It is just not my thing.Thankfully,I have been injury free. All my issues are unrelated to running.
    No foam rolls. I do enjoy a BAGEL now and then :).

    I have never run a step before a run of any kind. This proved to be the cause of many arguments with both my high school and college coaches. Again, I don’t disagree with any of your recommendations. However,I just have a system that has worked very well for me.

    I see you have made peace with the ducks LOL.

    Thanks for sharing, and keeping it fun.

    Liked by 1 person

    • jennaruns says:

      Thanks, Joey! Wow – so none of your injuries are running related? That’s pretty crazy. You sound like my dad (runner, decathlon) he never ever stretched or any of that! I always told him he should even as a kid. I’ve noticed I’ve become him though – I just like to go! I don’t want to hang around and stretch. But I know I should. Anyway, different things work for different people. If you can run 70+ miles a week I think you’re doing just fine! That’s amazing, really! Yeah those long runs take it out of me but I feel fine the next day. This week’s long run went better than the last. So I guess that’s a good sign! Thanks again!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Just about Dr Joey says:

    LOL, My father was a big time marathoner and also never stretched. He is still young but has been sidelined with a cancer battle he is winning. I guess the stretching would help the non related injuries. However, I also get out the door and just go. Subsequent to this marathon it is a quick back surgery and 20 miles a week mixed in with a big does of Golf LOL. I really get annoyed when peeps who never ran a step assume, and almost seem happy that my injuries are from running. Nope, all received protecting the fine citizens of New York.

    Hang in you’re really on track. WE ALL FEEL IT BY MID SEPTEMBER!

    I will drop by next week with what I hope will be an approved PhD. Fingers crossed – I have nothing left to give to the program.

    Liked by 1 person

    • jennaruns says:

      OH wow!! Next week is the big day, eh? You’ll be “Officially Dr. Joey!” And I’m glad your dad is beating the battle with cancer. I hope he is better soon.
      My dad is still at it, big on cycling now. Does Tours and races and all that jazz. He just did the Hotter Than Hell 100 for his 10th year. In fact, he still holds the record for the Decathlon at his college and was close to being in the Olympics. He could still beat me at any race. πŸ™‚ He’s the one that got me loving running. We’ve been running together since I was old enough to move my legs – before then he strapped me to his bike!
      So you’re having back surgery? At least it’s after the marathon I guess. I’m sure you will be back at your 70 miles/week in no time! Until then I hope 20/week and golf tide you over. Thanks for the encouragement as always!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Just about Dr Joey says:

        Thanks! He is getting great treatment and really has a strong heart as a result of years of running. You should be very proud of your father and his achievements! Funny, my father had me in the baby jogger on his long runs since I was a month old LOL. NO more marathons and 70 mile weeks for me subsequent to this one, I’am really done. I have very close friends that have been really pushing me to get into biking since it is easier on the joints.They, like you Dad big on the century rides. The back surgery has been planned for a few months.The epidural shots gave me the time I needed to run this marathon. I suck at Golf and welcome the new challenge LOL. One joke until next week PLEASE :). I’am pretty sure Derby could also beat you at any race with his background :). Sorry – enough soon to be Dr Joey for the week LOL. I ‘am actually a bit sad I have completed my program. I lived it for four years and now poof it’s over.

        Ok Ms Texas,I will tune in next week for the funny updates.I know you can only tolerate me every seven day’s :).

        GO RUN!!!

        Liked by 1 person

      • jennaruns says:

        Glad he’s getting great treatment! And yes I am very proud of my dad. He is my hero! You could get into biking after this last marathon… Who knows, you might love it! Just like my dad – he only loved running… Then discovered biking, something easier on the joints like you said, and he really does love it. Lol seems more fun than golfing! But if that keeps you occupied… Anyway, of course Derby could beat me in a race! But only if a squirrel is the prize! She is fast… 45mph! Thanks Joey and have a great week! πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      • Just about Dr Joey says:

        Ok no more to funny ! Derby is a lock if chasing a squirrel.However the line is even money if you’re chasing a duck LOL. As much as I love to bike, golf just sucks me in every chance I get. Talk next week – and thanks for making me laugh :).I really stress about my father. We lost my uncle who was a detective ( and the reason why I went into law enforcement ) to cancer last summer.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Mandy M says:

    I can’t tell you how much foam rolling, stretching and drills help me. My chronically tight hamstrings and calfs smile at the love I give them πŸ˜€πŸ’™. Also, strength exercises help. Great week and way to go Jenna πŸ˜€

    Liked by 2 people

  5. fjnardo says:

    Great week Jenna! Glad you officially get to rock your BibRave orange!

    How often do you stretch? Definitely not as much as I should. I’m super tight in low back and hamstrings and it’s only a matter of time before I injure myself. I try to after long runs though.

    Do you foam roll? before runs? after? On off days I do and mostly after the longer runs (5+ miles)

    Do you do β€œwarm up drills” before a run? every run? long runs only? I never have and always see the elite runners doing it. I’m sure they know better considering that they do well but I just don’t do it. I simply eat well the day before and get a good nights rest (As much as a firefighter can get!)

    Liked by 1 person

    • jennaruns says:

      Thanks Frank!! Yep can’t wait to rock the orange! I’m in the same boat with the stretching. Tight hamstrings and know I should stretch more but I just don’t like to… I need to before I learn my lesson the hard way with an injury. That’s great that you foam roll, though! And rest & nutritious food sure go a long way. Thanks again πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  6. jackiethomas says:

    Congrats on the 14 miles! I have a 14 miler this weekend and that’ll make it my longest run ever (nbd). And that’s awesome you’re a BibRave Pro ambassador — I’m def jealous! Keep on working hard! You def motivate me to focus on my training and not give into excuses!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Sophie says:

    Great job sweetie! Pulling though on the tough ones, and enjoying the good ones πŸ™‚ 14 miles is really long. For me at least hah! You’re awesome!

    I do some quick drills and dynamic stretches before every run and I have been foam rolling like a crazy woman both before and after runs, though it can never compare to a proper sports massage for me. Static stretches after runs, and therapeutic stretches in the evening. I feel like all I do is prepare/recover these days, lol!

    Cheering for you Jenna! Thanks for being a great inspiration!

    Ps. Sorry for sounding like a noob but I love your watch! Which brand/model is it? I’m looking to buy one!

    Liked by 1 person

    • jennaruns says:

      Thank you so much, Sophie! 14 is long for me too! 15 has been my longest ever which I did this week. I need to be better about preparing and recovering like you πŸ™‚ I’ve never had a sports massage but foam roll “when I can” (like I said, need to do it more). Thanks so much for sharing your routine! And your kind words mean a lot! As for the watch, it’s a Garmin Fenix 3. I was fortunate to find it used on eBay πŸ˜‰ love it!

      Like

  8. ifijustbreathe says:

    This is such a great summary of your workouts. Congrats on getting your long run in during such hot weather and for officially being a bib rave pro. πŸ™‚ I definitely feel the same effects when running anything 12 miles and up. Keep up the great work.

    Liked by 1 person

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