2016 New York City Marathon Training – Week 6

NYCM Week 6 Infographic

How committed am I to my training?  I did a long run before work on Monday.  It was my slowest long run in two years because I focused on effort over pace due to the heat and humidity.  But, I found some speed during my mid-week moderate run.  I finished my 7 x 1 mile tempo workout without any problems to round out the week.

Training Schedule
July 31st – August 6th

Sunday: 5 miles recovery.
MondayLong Run.  18 miles.
Tuesday:  Rest day.
Wednesday: 7 miles recovery.
Thursday: Moderate Run.  9 miles moderate.
Friday: Tempo Run.  7 x 1 mile w/90 second recoveries.
Saturday: 5 miles recovery

Mileage Total: ~55 Miles

Adaptations.  None.  The intensity definitely increased, though!

Workout Details

Long Run 18 miles [Log Details].

This week, my long run fell on a weekday.  My coach has me on a 10-day training schedule, which means my long run and other workouts might not fall on the same day each week.

I started reading the Science of Running this week.  I thought it would be an interesting experiment if I concentrated on doing long run so effortlessly that my brain would never get the idea that I had to stop.  I think most people call this “running easy”.

During the first few miles, I felt a little groggy from running so early.  In particular, my legs felt a little heavy.  Then, just as I was feeling alert, I experienced GI issues AGAIN!  I tried the restroom door at a park just off the trail but it was locked.  (Sigh.)  I listened to podcasts during the run, which kept my mind off the discomfort but also the pace.

Washington in the Morning

Washington in the Morning

About an hour later, I stopped to use a port-a-potty at Gravelly Point.  I felt a “second wind” after the pit stop and ran a little harder for a while but when I thought about how far I had to go, dialed it back.

Overall, I slowed down so much that I didn’t really struggle despite the heat and humidity. It was the slowest long run I’ve done in years but it didn’t feel like a slog.  My form never broke down to the slumped-over shuffle that it’s been lately.

Overall pace=9:57.

Moderate Run. 9 miles [Log Details].

The weather turned cooler on Wednesday.  The heat wave had broken.  Yes!

Lone Flower

Lone Flower

Early on, I tried to tap into what felt like a “moderate” effort.  I wanted to finish the run thinking, That wasn’t bad.  I didn’t really check my Garmin and just ran by effort for the first few miles.  But, when I hit the flat section of the Mount Vernon Trail, I saw I was running low 8:00 pace!  What?!  Strangely, I really didn’t feel like I would have described the effort as “moderate”.

About 5 or 6 miles into the run, I was working a little harder to keep my form together.  But, tried to straddle the line between what would feel “moderate” at the end of the run and what would feel “hard”.  I also reminded myself that I had a tempo run the next day.  Still, I felt I would need to run a lot harder for this run to have felt like an all out effort.

In the end, I couldn’t believe how fast I finished!  I haven’t run this fast outside since March!

Overall pace=8:22.

Tempo Run. 7 x 1 mile w/90 second recoveries [Log Details].

I think my coach intentionally left out any reference to pace for this workout.  I was fine with that.  Since reading The Science of Running, (well, starting it anyway), I’ve been trying to tap into effort more than pace.  I was assigned 4 x 200m to run before the interval session.

Even though I wanted to run by effort – I told myself I needed to run only as hard as it took to finish all 7 repeats feeling  “very tired” at the end – I used my HR monitor to see how that perception of effort showed up.  During the first three repetitions, I tried to keep my HR in the 68-72 range.  By the fourth and fifth interval, I let my HR spike a little but still tried to stay in that neighborhood.  For the last two, I ran mostly by feel but watched my HR on some of the steeper sections.

In the end, the run was close to 12 miles when the warm-up, cool-down, and 200m strides were taken into account.  It was a pretty hard workout but not impossible.

Splits=8:21, 8:35, 8:20, 8:28, 8:26, 8:19, 8:35.  Average=8:26.


Generally, I felt great.  My hips and glutes were a little sore all week.  It wasn’t quite the pain I felt when my piriformis was acting up but more like the discomfort from using muscles that haven’t been used in a while.  I’ve noticed I’m running more upright since last Saturday’s tempo run on the treadmill.


Much more tolerable than last week.  Morning temperatures were in the 70s all week with 70% humidity once the morning dew layer burned off.

Racing Schedule

Next race: Parks Half Marathon on September 11th.  (My Complete Racing Schedule.)

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