Week four. I had eye surgery (PRK) planned for Friday (yes, because why not layer more challenges on top of me), and I was very uncertain as to my ability to run on the weekend as it would take some time for my eyes to heal and my eyesight to become good. So I decided to push my long run (normally on Sunday) to Wednesday – to make sure that I got it done. Again – my calves had been dicey – they were painful on Monday, but I rested and massaged, and compressed them –and they were ok to run on Tuesday. I felt them every step – but they weren’t really painful.
I had decided that this week I would do full mileage (according to Matt’s Level 2 plan), but all at base pace or recovery except for the challenging test long run. The long run was a 15 mile progression run – 8 miles at base pace, then each mile gets progressively faster until the last mile is at half marathon pace. Wednesday dawned and I headed out. It was a challenging run – but I did it. I did my base pace miles relatively conservatively – but my last mile at half marathon pace was right on (and slightly faster than when I did this progression run in the summer). So I felt triumphant.
Recovery run Thursday, eye surgery and resting Friday. Saturday and Sunday I had 6-8 mile runs planned. My eyesight was a little sketchy and I needed to put drops in my eyes every 20 minutes or so – but I muddled through those runs. My calves were still sketchy – so I was still not confident that I could make a marathon in December. Yes – I had made it through a week of full mileage, but my calves were cranky and I hadn’t really done any speed or tempo work – I was very uncertain that I could do full mileage with speed. So – I put off registering for any race until I had a better sense.
Week 5 was a “down” week – where the mileage comes down and (theoretically) you have a test race – this one was supposed to be a 10k. I was going to be down at WDW for Food & Wine that weekend, so I knew I would not do a 10k – but I figured I’d run the same distance. Again – I completed all the runs, with the speed work, but again – my calves still felt pretty iffy. So I waited again – I figured week 6 would be full mileage, full speed and that would be the final decider.