Somehow three weeks have passed since my last post - the end of the school year craziness got the best of me! I have started to build my mileage and intensity again as my focus shifts to the Indy Monumental Marathon in early November. Last week I had two workouts on my schedule: the first combined a fast threshold mile with 12 x 400 m repeats at 5:58 pace, and the second was five miles at marathon pace in the middle of a 10 miler. I am working with my coach Esther Atkins again this cycle and am excited to see what progress I can make!
Like many of you, I have been running in some very hot and humid conditions. Over the past few weeks I have been running slower (gasp!) than my easy range to keep my runs truly easy. The pace range for my easy runs is anywhere from 7:48 to 8:36. Believe me, there have been many miles far slower than that pace range. There are some benefits to running in the heat, which include your body producing more oxygenated blood to service both your hard working muscles and to dissipate heat, better control of core temperature, and you become a more efficient sweater - you start sweating earlier at a lower body temperature AND your sweat contains less salt, which results in a better electrolyte balance. I think having a positive mindset goes a long way, too. Rather than thinking to myself "It is so freaking hot today, this run is going to suck!", I've been trying to start every run happy and thankful I am able to do it. Here is an article which further discusses the benefits and dangers of exercising in warmer temperatures.
I've been using my Garmin Forerunner 935 for about six weeks now and have had enough to time to determine it is by the far the best Garmin I have ever owned (and there have been many!). I was going to launch into an in depth review but could never compete with DC Rainmaker's post, which you can find here. If you prefer a shorter read, head here. I really like the training status feature - below is a picture of today's reading. It says my fitness is increasing while maintaining my usual work load, so hopefully I am reaping some of those rewards of hot weather running I listed above!
Confession time - I am really bad about hydrating during long runs. Really bad. As in I only drink if I happen to pass a water fountain. I know better, I really do. After my long run last weekend that left me so dehydrated it took hours to recover from, I decided I need to purchase a handheld water bottle. So please send me a recommendation!