TransRockies Run Training Recap: Weeks 9-12!

Cruising into winter season training has been going pretty well and the sub-zero temps have just added a whole new layer of beauty and fun to training! I am finishing off the first week of training in the cold and while I didn’t get outside for every run, my two biggest distances were outdoors, both on snowy and cold days, and I feel 37% more badass for getting those in! I always need to play around with layering and keeping gels or food warm enough to fuel with on a cold run when I’m starting out the in this season, but that’s just the joy of being an Alberta runner! It’s so fun writing these, but they’re mostly an online training journal so bear with me if you’re not into that.

At the end of October, the group from Edmonton that is going to be training together in the spring for TransRockies met up with our coach one chilly Sunday morning to go through our winter strength training program. If there is one thing I struggle HARD to balance when it comes to fitness and training, it is balancing cardio and weight lifting. I can only seem to do one or the other well at one time and can’t seem to get the right blend of each. I was super excited to be handed a ‘strength training for runners’ program that would hopefully fix that. It was everything I needed and more. I expected to be submitted to a Body Pump-esque workout with super light weights and lots of reps but it was actually a lot of the exercises I LOVE in strength training like deadlifts and goblet squats, just with a lot more core and mobility mixed in. It’s been awesome to have this workout in my back pocket so I don’t have to make it up as I go and wind up screwing over my next three days of running when I can’t move because I’m too sore.

Currently, according to my coach, the goal is to maintain baseline running through the winter (taking it down a notch from the summer high mileage that most people were running at), increase mobility, and get stronger before spring. Here is what weeks 9 to 12 looked like for me!

Week 9 – October 9 – 15, 2017 – 35.28 miles

Monday: 45 minutes strength training + 45 minutes stairmaster

Tuesday: 60 minute spin class

Wednesday: 4.38 miles (8:56 min/mile)

Thursday: 8.24 miles (9:26 min/mile)

Friday: 10.04 miles (9:39 min/mile)

Saturday: Boom Lake Hike 6.61 miles (817 ft. elevation gain)

Sunday: 6.01 miles (9:00 min/mile)

Week 10 – October 16 – 22, 2017 – 24.42 miles

Monday: 60 minute spin class

Tuesday: 2 X 60 minute spin class

Wednesday: 8.26 miles (9:10 min/mile)

Thursday: OFF

Friday: OFF

Saturday: 8.00 miles (8:57 min/mile)

Sunday: 8.16 miles (8:35 min/mile)

Week 11 – October 23 – 29, 2017 – 32.02 miles

Monday: 60 minute spin class

Tuesday: 2 X 60 minute spin class

Wednesday: 6.12 miles (8:35 min/mile)

Thursday: 4.18 miles (8:46 min/mile)

Friday: 5.02 miles (9:04 min/mile)

Saturday: 13.10 miles (9:27 min/mile)

Sunday: 3.60 miles (9:41 min/mile) + 60 minutes strength training

Week 12 – October 29 – November 5, 2017 – 34.07 miles

Monday: 60 minute spin class

Tuesday: 60 minute spin class

Wednesday: 10.40 miles (8:56 min/mile)

Thursday: 6.17 miles (9:07 min/mile)

Friday: 60 minute spin class + 40 minutes strength training

Saturday: 12.48 miles (9:50 min/mile)

Sunday: 5.02 miles (9:28 min/mile) + walk with mom

CURRENTLY…

Latest gear purchase: Merrell vest. It’s been AWESOME for an extra layer running. As long as my upper body and toes are warm I am usually good to go.

Favourite fuel: Honeystingers chews. After using more ‘real food’ to fuel my long runs, I found an extra packet of chews in my running gear and decided to switch it up and take those with me. I forgot how well they worked for me, though it reminded me of every. single. marathon. training. cycle.

Proudest moment: Finishing a 12+ mile long run in -17C. It was freaking COLD but I was so proud to have done it.

What I’m working to improve: Strength training. After receiving my strength training program from my run coach, I am working to do that twice a week to increase my mobility and strength as a runner.

Feeling about TRR: Excited for spring training. Winter is hard for runners here in Edmonton, and I am trying not to be a pansy this winter but some days I know the dark and cold are going to get the best of me. I am excited for TRR though and especially after meeting Gary Robbins and Ethan Newberry at the screening of ‘Where Dreams Go to Die,’ I am loving the trail running community!

Do you taper down your training in the winter or do you stick to training for spring races?

Do you run outside all winter?

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