Chicago Marathon Training: Week 7 Recap

Whew!! This was a busy week indeed!

If you read Friday’s post, then you know last week was all about birthday party planning for this boy:


His birthday was officially Thursday but we celebrated on Saturday–more on this later 😀

As far as workouts are concerned, I was very grateful this was a scale back week as I needed it. I even cut some of the runs shorter than what was on the schedule. (shh!!!)

I usually get on the bike on Mondays but one of my buddies was looking for a running partner for an easy 6 miler. I told her it’d have to be easy since I had run 15 miles the day before.

We chatted the entire way and even though the pace was faster than my “easy”, it didn’t feel difficult and the time flew by.

Screen Shot 2015-07-27 at 8.45.16 AM

Tuesday morning, I made up my missed bike workout from the day before and got in 45 minutes/10 miles.

In the evening, all of my running friends were busy or had run earlier so I found myself heading over to the local running store solo. I knew there would be others I’d recognize so I wasn’t worried about anything. In fact, I decided since I was by myself, I’d try and run a fast 5k to test out the legs. I knew I wouldn’t get a completely accurate estimate of a 5k race (one, it wasn’t an actual race; two, I had run 15 miles two days before and 6 one day before; and three, it was 100+ degrees out) but I really wanted to gauge where I was for that distance and went for it.

I was running late so when I got to the store, everyone was already getting started. I caught up to the pack and then saw one my friends pushing her daughter (she always does on this run). I decided to keep her in my sights for as long as I could. She’s a total badass and regularly maintains an 8ish average while pushing her stroller! So that was my plan–just keep her in sight. The first mile went by relatively smooth and I felt great at 8:46. I was passing people (she was passing people!) and while I knew I could probably catch up to her, I wanted to keep pace. I was getting closer though and my mile 2 beeped at 8:23. It was a little after mile 2 that I was now right behind her but I knew that she’d finish the last mile strong and I was already struggling a bit. Last mile, 8:22. I’m totally counting that negative split 🙂

This girl though. Total B.A. She's training for an Ironman 70.3.

This girl though. Total B.A. She’s training for an Ironman 70.3.

Screen Shot 2015-07-27 at 8.57.32 AM

Wednesday was speedwork day and I was back at the track for some Yassos. I’m a weird one who really likes doing this drill. For those unfamiliar with Yasso 800s, his theory is that you run an 800 (two times around the track) at the pace you hope to finish your marathon. If you could build up to 10 reps, you should be able to pull off that time or darn close. The best way I’ve seen to do this is:

Between each 800, jog for the same amount it took you to complete a repeat. I like to jog/walk a 400.

Between each 800, jog for the same amount it took you to complete a repeat. I like to jog/walk a 400. For more info, check out this.

It was tough for me that day to hit my marks because again, I was running late and got in only a 400 warm up and had to get going. The first half of my workout I missed my pace goal (which is around 4:00-4:05–NOT my marathon goal time but that’s where I feel the 800s are challenging but not overly difficult/easy).

4:09, 4:10, 4:09

I readjusted and the second half of the workout:

3:59, 4:02, 3:59

It made me feel pretty good that I was able to end the workout better than the beginning.


It had been four days of hard running that by the time Thursday rolled around, I found myself clicking the snooze button for the 5 at 5 alarm I’d set. I needed/wanted the rest. Plus, it was my son’s official birthday and doing this was much more fun:


Fridays are my typical rest days and while I didn’t run, I was busy party planning for my little guy’s party the next day.

I had 10 miles scheduled for my long run Saturday morning and I woke up at 3:30 for a 4 a.m. start time. (Seriously, who am I?)

I ran 4 with some friends and then made it back to meet up with the 5 a.m. starters for another 6. I picked up the pace towards the end on the second go around and finished with the last two miles at 9:30 and 9:07. I’ve been liking finishing the long run strong and getting the legs moving while they’re tired.

The temp at 4 a.m.

The temp at 4 a.m.

Later that afternoon, it was party time!!! Several of my friends joked how I should have worn a Fitbit or something to track my steps. I was a busy mom that day!!!




Overall, it was a great week with less mileage than usual (22.12) but I was happy I got some good workouts done.

How was *your* week? Are you a chocolate cake fan? Have a great Monday, amigos! ❤ , helly

–Do you ever test out your 5k pace on your own? 

–Are you a fan of Yasso 800s?

27 responses

  1. Nice job on your progressive 5k (esp in that crazy heat)!
    I hadn’t noticed the pepperoni on the pizza formed the number 2- so cute! Happy Belated Birthday to your little guy 🙂
    I’ve never tested myself in a 5k alone, or done Yassos. I don’t think I’m quite motivated enough to push myself in a 5k on my own lol. & Yassos…well they are are my to do list 😀

    • Trust me, it took a lot to motivate me as well lol! But I was curious and there aren’t a lot of 5ks in Arizona during the summer ja!! I’d be interested to see how you do with yasso’s and how’d they’d work on a fast runner

  2. Dude. Your 100 degree temps. Are. Insane. You are a beast. I’d be like heyyyy treadmill what’s happening?! Damnnnn! I will tell Bart you are a fan of his workout. I should be seeing him sometime in the near future!!

      • I totally can! I know I have one somewhere. We are supposed to go biking together but he’s been traveling for races lately! My friend Kathy and I are supposed to go over to the RW offices on the 13th to hang out and do a track workout if our schedules match up with the editors that invited us. At the very least I should see him then!!

      • Haha noooo he is just super involved with the local running community. Anyone who runs consistently around my area is close friends with him. It does help that he’s literally 3 miles down the road from me and I pass his house probably once a day. When Charissa came to visit (you probably follow her blog but if you don’t check her out!) I took her out for coffee with him after our run! He’s just a really nice guy!

  3. Way to go! Looks like a great week of training! Love the birthday pizza and family pics – nothing like a birthday party to bring friends/family together. My girls love birthdays! We actually welcomed a cousin (niece for me) yesterday, so the girls wanted a cake and sang her happy birthday – it was too cute!

  4. Your week was so busy but it sounds like it went really well. I have no idea how you run that early but you somehow make it sound like fun!

  5. Aww happy belated birthday to your little man!! Pizza and a party. That’s a good time:) Great runs with how busy you were! I may have to do Yasso’s. But 10 800s ahh that scares me haha! Which is why I should prob do them at some point;)

  6. You seriously woke up at 3:30 am? FOR REAL??!?!? TO RUN????????? Holy sheeeat. I can’t even imagine that. Omg. You know what? You win. You just do. You win everything. Anyone who wakes up in the middle of the night to run should automatically qualify for tax write-offs, a Boston entry, and an endless supply of Starbucks frappuccinos. I worship you.

  7. I love Yasso 800’s but i haven’t done them in forever. I still can’t get over how awesome your runs are in that heat. I guess you are just acclimated. I would never be able to hit those times in heat like that!

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