This was a tough week; I felt like so many factors were working against me and I had to work twice as hard to adhere to my training schedule. For example, Dustin was traveling all week for work, so I was a single dog mom (which is actually a lot of work with a puppy!) We had really bad storms several days, work was busy, and I had bronchitis (which made have led to a strained chest muscle, more on that below.) It was not the perfect set-up for a strong week of training.
Read on for the gory-TMI details…
Monday: Dustin had an early flight to NYC for work; I tried to sleep a bit after he left, but never really fell back to sleep. Eventually I headed out the door for 5.5 miles at an 8:55 min/mile pace. My schedule called for 8 miles or two 5-mile runs. After walking the dogs after work, I headed back out for another 4 miles at a 9 min/mile pace. 9.5 miles on the day. Close enough.
Tuesday: 7 easy miles at a 9:15 min/mile pace with the morning run club.
I had a work event in the evening. We’ve been using a Rover (a service that offers dog-walkers, dog-sitters, etc.) twice a day to take care of Ruth, but with Dustin out of town, I had to add a third visit so I could attend the work event. Thank goodness we have Rovers to help. Ruth is 4 months old now, which means she should be able to hold it for about 5 hours, but that’s definitely not a reliable estimate. And I hate to have her in the crate for so long! She needs to be active and run around and play, so I’m happy to pay a professional to help out during the work day.
Wednesday: I woke up to severe thunderstorms. I could have run on the treadmill, but I opted to sleep. I have been fighting a cough since way back at that wedding we went to 3 weeks ago. I think it’s been lingering because I haven’t taken the best care of myself; between the stress of my mom being in the hospital, not getting great sleep due to the puppy, and all the running, I probably set myself up to stay sick for much longer than normal. Shame on me.
I was feeling pretty terrible at work and barely able to attend meetings without leaving due to extreme coughing fits. I made an appointment at a Minute Clinic at a Target, and they gave me prescription strength cough suppressant and an inhaler, which helped a little, though the cough still lingered.
Yet I was still determined to run….so dumb.
When I got home after work, it was still raining. I probably could have run outside, but I felt so guilty putting Ruth back in the crate so I could run. Instead I opted for the treadmill. My workout was actually a good one to do on the treadmill: 20 minute warm-up, 8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 (in minutes) at increasingly faster paces and a 2 minute recovery in between, then a 10 minute cool-down. I ended with 9 miles total on the treadmill.
I watched the Netflix show “Mindhunter” while on the treadmill. Its a true-crime kind of show based on different real-life serial killers and the FBI’s work to catch and understand them. It’s pretty good!
I moved the baby-gate to the basement and kept Ruth (and Matilda, though she doesn’t need supervision!) in the room with me with some new toys to keep her entertained while I ran. At one point, she did try to get onto the treadmill and learned quickly that was not a smart idea! Fortunately, she wasn’t hurt.
Thursday: Another morning of thunderstorms, another treadmill run in the morning. 5 miles easy. I was supposed to do 8, but I didn’t have time. After work, I had yet another work event, so no opportunity to make up the miles.
Friday: Christie and I met up before work for 9 easy miles. The storms had finally ended and we had a great morning for some miles. I was happy to have the opportunity to make up some of the missed mileage from earlier in the week.
I went to Discover Strength after work, which was the first time I had done any strength all week. I have been really happy with my strength program there and feel like I have really seen results; they are awesome. But I think it was my own fault that I had the bad cough, which ended up leading to me straining a chest muscle during the workout.
I even made it through my long run the next day, but man, oh, man, it has been hurting me SO badly since then. I don’t think I’m going to be able to strength train for a week or so. I’m taking ibuprofen and icing it, but the pain is pretty terrible. I don’t blame Discover Strength at all, but rather blame myself for pushing too hard when I was sick!
Has anyone out there strained a chest muscle? TMI, but my right boob is quite sore. Hopefully some time off heals it!
Saturday: A busy day. Christie and I met up at 6:30 am to start our long run a little early. We covered about 4 easy miles before our run club started (they start at 7:15).
My long run workout was 4 miles easy, then 8×1 mile at goal marathon pace (between 8-8:15) with 0.2 mile recovery, then easy miles to get to 18. I ended with 18.5 miles at an 8:45 minute mile average.
Added bonus, our friend Aaron hosted a support stop for the run club, with Gatorade and snacks around mile 7. Much appreciated, thank you Aaron!
It was a gorgeous cooler morning (mid-60’s) and I felt really good on the marathon pace miles. Every time we’d stop running for a water break, I’d have an insanely annoying coughing fit, but I didn’t feel that bad on the actual run.
However, after the run, was when I realized that I had strained my chest muscle. The strain put a “strain” on everything else we did that day!
What else did we do? Ruth had a two-hour evaluation at Pampered Pooch Playground. This is the doggie daycare/hotel to which we usually take Tilda (if a friend can’t take her). Both of them will be boarded at Pampered Pooch in the future, so she had to do the evaluation to ensure she got along with other dogs.
She’s still just a baby, but apparently she did great and is welcome to come back in the future!
After that appointment, Tilda had an appointment to get her stitches out (no more cone of shame!) Bad news on that front though; it turns out the black moles they removed are melanoma. We don’t know what that means yet; they are doing further testing and then we will meet with an oncologist at the University veterinary hospital in the new few weeks. I don’t want to get too upset yet, as I just don’t know what it means. Clearly, Matilda is my first baby, and I want her to be healthy and happy and live forever!
Saturday’s dog events weren’t over yet; We had family photos with the talented Ami at Lake Nokomis. We’ll use them for our holiday cards. Here are a few sneak previews. It’s challenging to get two dogs to pose for photos, that’s for sure, but Ami always gets some great pictures!
Later that evening, we went to a “Of Monsters and Men” concert at the Surly Festival Field. It was a great evening for a show.
Sunday: I had hoped to attend a Oiselle run, but with the bronchitis, the strained chest muscle, the last of sleep…I decided to skip it. Eventually Dustin and I went out for a run around 10:30 am together, 7.7 miles at an 8:35 min/mile pace. I always run faster than my honest recovery pace when I’m with him.
My strained chest muscle was hurting pretty badly throughout the whole run. Its surprising that a muscle that isn’t even really part of the running process is still…well, part of the running process! Now I’m on the couch with an ice pack and some pain relievers hoping for the best.
Summary: 67 miles of running; that’s a lot, especially with all the challenges I faced this week…plus 1 terrible strength training day.
I’m a running coach and just writing out the things that I did this week makes me cringe; I would have told an athlete of mine to take an extra rest day due to the bronchitis. I’m definitely not blaming my coach, I never mentioned my sickness or my muscle strain to her (unless she reads this blog!) so she wouldn’t have even known. But I should know better and recognize I pushed too hard this week.
Hey, I’m putting it all out here, the whole honest truth, and opening myself up to the judgement that I probably deserve! My cough does finally seem to be getting better and fingers crossed the strained muscle heals quickly.