Monday (Mar. 12): off
Tuesday (Mar. 13): AM 11.5 miles, 1hr:26, 7:35/mile, Monona Bay to Arb Loop and back by Monona Bay. It was much darker at 5:45 because of the recent time change, so I went out with my headlamp. The temperatures were in the low 40s with minimal wind, which made for great running weather. My legs felt more fatigued that I would have expected after a day off. I guess they got more banged up last week than I had thought. I'll have to see how they feel as the week progresses; hopefully I'll be able to get give more days of hard training before taking it easy. PM 6.3 miles, :44, 7:00/mile, around Monona Lake into Turville Trails. I wasn't planning on a second run today, but it was way too nice out! I explored some trails nearby and tested out the new Montrail trail racing shoes I recently purchased (I need to alter the inseam because it made for some bloody toes--see picture below). My legs actually feel much better after a second run; hopefully they'll still be feeling good for the tempo tomorrow.
Wednesday (Mar. 14): AM 12.6 miles, 10k tempo around Arb with Fran, 36:44, 5:56/mile. The temperatures were in the high 40s when I stepped out the door at 6am; wonderful weather for a hard run (or any run, really). I met Fran and we ran a 10k around the Arb and hit mile splits in 6:08, 6:01, 6:04, 5:48, 5:44, 5:46. My legs were a bit stiff in the first half from yesterday, but the last three miles felt really smooth and my breathing began to settle into a nice rhythm.
Thursday (Mar. 15): PM 10 miles, 1hr:13, 7:15/mile, out-and-back along Monona Bay to the Arb. Ridiculously nice weather again today (high of 79!). My legs were quite sore from the effort yesterday (oh, and from 4 hours of sand volleyball yesterday afternoon), so I wanted to take it easy and run a few less miles.
Friday (Mar. 16): AM 8 miles, 16 x 200m repeats @ 37secs. The temperatures continue to rise! It was in the high 50s when I went out this morning. The repeats went well and my legs seemed to be responding to the up-pace tempo. My stride was feeling very efficient as I continued to work on turning over my steps as quickly as possible. PM 5 miles, :37, 7:20/mile, short Monona Lake loop. Easy miles on a pleasant evening; got the legs loosened up.
Saturday (Mar. 17): AM 18 miles, 2hr:35, 8:38/mile, loops around Indian Lake Park with Hank. The terrain was diverse this morning: grassy trails, muddy trails, dirt trails and gravel trails. The technicality also varied greatly: some flat, some very steep, some with steps, some with roots and rocks, some rolling. Overall, the variety was perfect for training purposes. Hank & I took it nice and easy, doing (I honestly have no idea how many) laps around various parts of the park: around the lake, through the woods, up the bluffs. I had some tightness in my left knee and a bit of a cramp in my right foot; I'll have to keep on eye on these things in the next two weeks.
Sunday (Mar. 18): AM 11 miles, 1hr:10, 6:22/mile, SMR loop with Hank & Fran. Splendid conditions: temperatures in the 50s, sun rising, minimal wind. We kept the pace steady and finished strong, covering the last mile in 5:37. My legs were extremely sore but surprisingly responsive. This run provides great promise for Mad City. The last mile of an 82 mile week was sub-6 mins, and the last 11 miles of an 82 mile week -- on terribly sore legs -- were run at a low 6:20/mile pace. I'm thinking I can hold a similar pace for the 50k, but we'll see!
Weekly Totals: 82 miles, ~10hrs. Another stellar week of training. My left knee and right foot were acting up a bit over the weekend, but the minimal mileage over the next two weeks should be more than enough rest to bring me back to full health. Now it's time to lay low and prepare mentally.