DC RNR USA Half Marathon Training: Week 1


All is right with the world.

Some people wait until after New Year’s to make resolutions; some people start on their goals before the clock even turns 12 on midnight.

I didn’t want to wait a second more to start on my goals, so I emailed Jess just after Christmas and told her I was ready to come back. I’d achieved two massive PRs with her in 2013, so don’t mess with what works, right?

Like 2013, I’d like to PR in both the half and the marathon distances. I burnt myself the hell out in 2013, and then took last year off from trying to race things.

My buddy Kristine wrote a post a few weeks ago about pushing past things. Comfort zones. Distances. Paces. Goal times.  There’s a fine line between that making us feel alive and that being too much. She wrote that last year she was content to see what her body was capable of, and I had a similar year, trying all the things.

I didn’t want to force running, and I didn’t. Now, we’re back together, and I am very happy that way. I’m not running away from anything. I’m just running because it makes me my best self. It helps with my mental health, it helps with my physical health and it helps me commit to myself.

With that said…how did week 1 go?

Not too bad, thanks!

Monday: Back to the grind! 4 miles, go. Jess told me not to look at my watch, and I didn’t till the end, and did about a 9:46 average for an easy pace. I told myself beforehand not to judge where I was starting from, just to observe.

Tuesday: 4 miles, 2 miles at tempo (at about 70% exertion), 1 mile warmup, 1 mile cooldown. The tempo miles were 8:43 and 8:33, which, works for me.

Wednesday:  I was really excited to get in a last workout before New Year’s and went to Mile High. 2.8 miles down.

Thursday: We’d planned a rest day, because, New Year’s Day. As it turned out, I was moderately responsible and definitely could have worked out…but a rest day was okay, too.

Friday: Returned to Mile High with Ashley. With her next to me, I had a push to go a little faster and got to 3 miles in the 28 minutes. (Keep in mind, this includes warm-up, cooldown and recoveries too.)

Saturday: We did an unofficial Junior League run club, and I ran 4 miles with the ladies.

Sunday: Yoga at Yoga Shanti

For this cycle, I’m trying to keep to at least one strength and/or yoga workout per week, since I know that really helped me the last time I ran D.C. — and I’m in a place I don’t want to give strength workouts up! (< Who am I?)

We can talk about this more next week, but I’m definitely having trouble motivating to run in the cold this week.The wintertime blues + my warm bed are conspiring against me, but I will not let them win! 

What are you training for? How do you motivate to run in the winter? I’ll run on the treadmill if I have to, but I’m trying to tough it out. 

12 comments on “DC RNR USA Half Marathon Training: Week 1

  1. Sarah

    Hi Theodora! Firstly, you’re great!
    I’m training for a half marathon in April. it will be my second and I am looking to go sub-2 hours, preferably under 1.55. I treated myself to some new winter running clothes and it has helped me to stay motivated when I would rather stay inside. I find that I’m just not as good a runner when I’m on the treadmill, even though I do use them during the week during lunch-time gym sessions. Best wishes, Sarah xx

  2. Kiersten

    I am training to run a marathon in New Zealand in March, which will be my sixth continent. November was snowy and cold, but then December was warm and thee was no snow, I got spoiled! Now it is freezing and icy. I’ve done 2 treadmill runs and an indoor track run so far this week and all of them were brutal! I’ve decided that no matter how cold it is tomorrow, and it is supposed to be -20, I am running outside!

  3. Nicole

    Love that you’re training for something again! (As a reader at least.) Am also slightly envious. I have a pesky lingering ankle injury but this race was on my short list. I am going to try to do the cherry blossom ten miler instead (though i wasn’t picked in the lottery). Happy training. Can’t wait to keep reading/living vicariously.

  4. Shawna

    totally with you on craving the strength sessions — i do 2 TBW/strength seshes a week and they’ve been such awesome complements to my running. i’m training for the 13.1 Series Half in March (in Queens) — been some chilly outdoor runs lately! last night was a bit of a brisk one. 🙂 hope your training goes well!

  5. Jane

    Love that you’re training again, mostly so I can follow along! I just started training for a half but my goal this time around is just to finish strong since I am coming back from an injury. Thinking I may use a coach however for a Fall Goal Race since I am dying to PR in the Half.

  6. Ange @ Cowgirl Runs

    I’m running a marathon with my best running friend at the end of May and my training cycle starts at the end of this month. I’ll be bffs with the treadmill since I practically live in the north pole and I haaaaate being cold and slipping on runs. Thank goodness for my new gym membership 🙂
    I, too, am hoping for half and full PRs this year AND I’m finally including strength training in my plan.

  7. Kristine

    LOVE THIS. Let’s do a workout when I’m in NYC! Or just drink wine and talk about working out? Can’t wait to see you crush your goals in 2015. And um, we’re running NYC together right? 🙂 I do not run outside if it is less than 40 degrees. Thankfully this rarely happens in SF. I’ve been all about the yoga/Pilates/cross-training lately and it’s been really good physically/mentally/emotionally. Makes me excited to start running again when the time is right!

    1. Theodora Blanchfield Post author

      I usually run 4x/week when half training and 5x/week when full training but I was just really excited to be back on a plan last week that I couldn’t hold back from an extra day 🙂 A+ for plan-following, Theodora.


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