Marine Corps Marathon Week 9

9 weeks complete, 9 more to go. Sing it with me now, “WOAH, we’re halfway there…”

I’m not ashamed to say that “Livin’ On A Prayer” is one of my favorite songs ever. Now, on to what went down this week in marathon training (“planned” workout in green/“actual” in bold):

Monday: Rest or cross-training/rest.

Tues: 4/4 + strengthening/PT. Typical Tuesday morning slog, with a side stitch throughout the run. Boo.

Wed: 9/9. Changed up my route a bit, which helped to relieve the monotony. There was also a tiny bit of elevation gain (~200′).

Thurs: 4/4. I think I’m going to make Thursdays my short interval/speed days. This week, I did a short warm-up, followed by 10 x 1 minute fartlek/HIIT intervals + 2 minutes rest, finishing with a cool-down. My splits were nearly identical to the workout I did at the beginning of July, but I’m not taking too much stock in what that means re: my speed or fitness. It was just fun to get out there and run fast for a little while.

Fri: Rest or cross-training/20 min yoga. “Rise and shine” yoga download podcast. This was fine, but I think I need to get myself into a real studio soon.

Sat: Rest/13.2 trail miles with 2500′ elevation gain. Headed over to Cathryn‘s neck of the woods to explore new trails. We started off in Huddart Park and ran over to Wunderlich Park. In between were miles and miles of beautiful single track in the forest, surrounded by coastal redwoods, eucalyptus, and oak trees. We saw 2 horses, about 5 cyclists, and less than 20 hikers and runners the whole time. Very peaceful! The only downside was lack of water and toilets. By the end of the run, we were both almost out of water. Once we got to a spigot at Wunderlich, we immediately refilled our bottles over and over again — I guess we were thirsty! After the run, Cathryn, her husband, her son, and I went to Alice’s for a delicious lunch. I was starving and my scramble with hash browns really hit the spot! It was a really fun adventure and I’m already looking forward to our next one, which will hopefully be in the Marin Headlands.

Beautiful trails, all to ourselves!

Beautiful trails, all to ourselves! (Most of my photos came out blurry, unfortunately)

Up and up we go!

Up and up we go!

Here comes (blurry) Cathryn!

Here comes (blurry) Cathryn!

More photos - courtesy of Cathryn.

More photos, some of me running – courtesy of Cathryn.

You can read Cathryn’s take on our trail adventure and a more detailed description of the trails we ran here.

Sun: Half marathon/3 recovery. I took advantage of the cut back week to sleep in and enjoy a relaxing morning with the Gypsy Runner. I must’ve been tired because I slept for over 10 hours! In the afternoon, I left all of my gadgets at home (Garmin, iPhone), and set out for 3 easy miles around the Lake. It was fun to see the weekend crowd out and about – I saw a capoeira group, a woman slacklining, and an impromptu drum circle all within 1/4 mile. Gotta love Oakland!

Wrap-Up: 30 miles/33.2 total. This was a slightly weird week because I had a half marathon on the schedule, which I obviously did not do. I’m not following the schedule next week either, since I’ll be running the Skirt n Dirt 25K on Saturday in the place of my 19 mile long run. I’m considering it an equal exchange, since I’ll probably take the same amount of time to run the SND 25K (with its nearly 3000′ elevation gain) as 19 road miles. Wish me luck!


Two random notes from this week:

1. Earbud fail. After a few recent hiccups, my iPhone earbuds have finally quit on me. I spent almost 2 hours researching replacement earbuds, and thought about getting this pair, but ended up deciding to get another pair of Apple earbuds. The problem was that they were sold out at Target, and I was too lazy to fight through the back-to-school shopping mania to get a pair elsewhere. I settled for a pair of Skullcandy Ink’d earbuds. They were the cheapest pair I could find that had an in-line mic and play/pause controls. I’ve only tested them out in my apartment so far, but I’ll let you know how they perform on the run.

2. Runger = running + hunger. The “problem” with 40 mile weeks? I’m hungry ALL THE TIME, even though I’m eating ALL THE TIME. It’s a weird kind of hunger, as in I’m not always getting the normal hunger cues. For instance, last week, I developed this horrible headache. I thought maybe I was dehydrated, so I drank a bunch of water. Then, I ate a couple of pieces of fruit. Still, the headache persisted. Finally, I thought about all that I ate that day (a couple of Clif Bloks and a Gu, 3 tacos, 2 pieces of fruit) and all of the running I did that day (2 hours on the trails) and realized that I hadn’t eaten enough. Duh! I ended up scarfing down 9 pieces of California Roll before gorging myself at a friend’s BBQ. And guess what? The headache disappeared. Don’t get me wrong — it’s really nice to eat what I want to eat without thinking too much about it, but at the same time, it’s kinda annoying to always be hungry. I think I ate 6 meals on Friday. #marathontrainingproblems


Howdy! My name is Jen and I live in the San Francisco Bay Area. I like to eat, run, and blog, but not usually at the same time.

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Posted in MCM, Trail running, Training
10 comments on “Marine Corps Marathon Week 9
  1. You and I are on the same damn page! I’m always hungry but obviously I’m eating enough because this girl is gaining weight. I too was ‘scheduled’ for a half marathon this weekend which obviously didn’t happen. Weird now that half marathon distance seems short? Never thought I’d see the day…Great week!

    • Jen says:

      Yeah, it’s definitely a delicate balance between taming the runger and overeating. I’ve been bad about indulging my sweet and fat tooth (teeth?) — I have to remember that food is fuel and I can’t fuel my body with junk.

  2. Dominick S. says:

    ELEVATION…can you post a pic of your quads from before and after this training cycle? I am so excited for this weekends one 13-miler…on a holiday weekend no less! Have I died and gone to training schedule heaven? Good luck on the ear buds and don’t talk to me about hunger. I eat at least once an hour…I eat sooooo freaking much…about 6 serving of fruit (maybe more) a day plus peanut butter, hummus, vegis, beef jerky…and then my actual meals. Marathon training is expensive at the grocery store.

    • Jen says:

      Haha! I was just thinking that one of my reasons for trail racing is that it subs in for strength training, which I’m TERRIBLE about doing on a regular basis. Your snacks sound healthy — I need to start bring good food to work instead of relying on the processed stuff we have in the snack drawer. Enjoy your light, holiday weekend!

  3. Angela says:

    Girl, you are ROCKING it! Way to go!!

  4. Amy says:

    Mostly, I just wanted to say (in addition to excitement over another successful week in Jen Marathon training) that I love Living on a Prayer and have a secret dream of being a rock star so I can sing a duet (my part would be all of the parts about Gina) with Bon Jovi. I’m in taper mode now, so it has been weird going back to eating less until the carb load starts, but at least I am less hungry all the time! Sadly, no more post-long run gorges for the foreseeable future. GOOD LUCK with your crazy dirt skirt race!

    • Jen says:

      Well, obviously if we ever meet IRL, we need to go to karaoke and sing Livin’ on a Prayer! I saw Jon Bon Jovi do an acoustic version live at a Kerry/Edwards rally in 2004. That was nice, I but I prefer the original version.
      Enjoy your taper and good luck at Imogene!!

  5. […] of you might remember that back in the summer, I had run some of these trails with Cathryn (see: my post, her post).  I thought the trails were gorgeous.  Tough, but […]

  6. […] – Exploring new trails all around the Bay Area, especially my runs with Cathryn at Lake Chabot, Huddart/Wunderlich, Marin, and Briones. – Pushing my limits at the Skirt n Dirt 25K – probably my toughest race […]

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4/28/19: London Marathon

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