Week 4 has the same schedule as week 3 – five easy runs and two off days. After this, we get into the different tempo and speed work sessions.
The first part of this week was in Atlanta. I was in a new hotel because it was close to Piedmont Park, which turned out to be a great and scenic place to run. That plus the fact that the dew point in Atlanta was in the 50, 20 points lower than in Houston, made for great Monday and Wednesday runs.
Week 4 schedule:
- Monday:off day
- Tuesday: easy 5 mi - EASY RUN 5.2 mi in 48.03, 9:12 pace. Tried REALLY REALLY hard to run slow in the cool Atlanta morning, but with the dew point 20 degrees cooler than at home in sweltering Houston, it felt like running in the fall.
- Wednesday: off day
- Thursday: easy 3 mi - EASY RUN 3.27 mi in 29.27, 9:00 pace. Yeah, yeah, faster than my assigned pace. Next week at this time will be the first temp run, which will target an 8:00 pace. I was REALLY REALLY tempted to go for it this week, but my nephew who used to train quite a bit wisely advised me against it. I do not feel like I was running much faster than in Houston, and I’m sure the lower dew point and cooler weather helps in that regard.. My heels and achilles are getting a bit sore; I’m stretching them and my calves, and rolling my calves out as often as possible…I’m pretty sure it is just the extra miles.
- Friday: easy 3 mi - EASY RUN 3.5 mi in 33:48, 9:39 pace. Back in Houston, woo hoo! Noticeable difference in the dew point, which actually bodes well for fall and winter races.
- Saturday: easy 5 mi - EASY RUN 5 mi in 48:55, 9:47 pace. Had a chat with my brother about the benefit of the “Easy Run” paces, and the fact that I need to slow down. A couple of quotes from Hanson’s to remind me about the benefits of “Easy Runs”:
- “To understand why easy running is important, you must consider the physiological adaptations that it stimulates in muscle fiber development, energy utilization, capillary development, cardiovascular strength, and structural fitness.”
- When you run at lower intensities, you burn around 70 percent fat and 30 percent carbohydrate. With an increase in pace comes an increase in the percentage of carbohydrates you burn. Your easy running days serve as catalysts to develop those slow-twitch muscle fibers and, consequently, teach your body to burn fats over carbohydrates. Slow-twitch fibers are better than fast-twitch fibers at burning fat because they contain greater amounts of mitochondria, enzymes that burn fat, and capillaries.Luke, Humphrey (2014-03-12). Hansons Half-Marathon Method: Run Your Best Half-Marathon the Hansons Way (Kindle Locations 730-733). VeloPress. Kindle Edition.
- Sunday: easy 6 mi - EASY RUN 6 mi in 1:00:31, 10:05 pace). Finally got some rain, just in time for me to start this run. Drenched for the first mile, then it dried up.
I must comment on the Podcast I’ve started listening to during running. I’ve always listened to TodayInIOS podcast to keep up with iOS related topics, but Rob from that podcast listed his favorite podcasts, and Hardcore History has become my go-to running audio. Currently I’m listening to his description of WWII, a long four-part series called “Blueprint for Armageddon.” If you like history, I cannot recommend it more highly.
Plan total (5+3+3+5+6) = 22 miles
Actual total (5.2+3.3+3.5+5+6) = 23 miles
Next week, week five, starts something other than “easy runs” with a Tempo Run on Thursday. It is also the last week with Monday off, and since it falls on the Labor Day holiday, I’m good with that.