Workout Recap: Half Marathon Training Week 9

I didn’t take a single picture while running this week…how’s that for blogger fail? But it makes sense when I look at the week below. I got my miles in but I can’t say any of the runs felt particularly amazing or noteworthy, they felt like I was getting business done.

So because we all know a post without pictures is no post at all, you’re stuck with some randoms. You’re welcome.

Monday: Rest/foam roll. Experimenting with a recipe from The Runner’s World Cookbook.

Runner's World Cookbook recipe

Tuesday: 3 miles on the treadmill, 12.10 min/mile. Mentally draining day at work = a zone out run on the good ole ‘mill. Caught up on some episodes of The New Girl…Prince was pretty awesome.

Wednesday: 9 miles on the bike. I swapped one of my short/slow runs for a catch-up bike ride with a girlfriend and had such a good time! Maybe I should actually do that whole cross-training thing I worked into my training plan once in a while.

Thursday: Rest/foam roll

Friday: 4.54 miles, 10:57 min/mile.

Saturday: 10.01 miles, 12:02 min/mile. This was harder than last week’s long run. Was it because of not taking a rest day Friday to ensure fresh legs? Or was it because I started off mentally struggling to get in the mood? Either way, I was happy when it was over.

Honey Stingers are delicious

I was also happy to recently discover these. So delicious!

Sunday: Road Trip! I thought 8 hours total in the car would make me extra sore after yesterday’s long run, but surprisingly it didn’t. No complaints here!

Run miles: 17.55

Bike miles: 9

Overall: I’m happy with it. Pita thinks I could have stepped up my couch game a bit.

Bitch Please

Always, Sierra

Workout Recap: Half Marathon Training Weeks 7 & 8

Let’s breeze through Week 7 recap (Spoiler Alert – nothing much happened), and then rejoice in the awesomeness of Week 8!

Week 7: 2/3/14 – 2/09/14

Wednesday: 3.55 miles on the treadmill, 12:46 min/mile. I think running on the treadmill has been contributing to occasional back pain, so I’ve decided if I’m stuck inside for a run I’m going to take it slow and easy.

Thursday: 3.30 miles, with two miles tempo, 11:25 min/mile.

Sunset Run

Every other day of the week: nada

Run miles: 6.85

Overall: A week of low motivation and the rainy weather we’ve been waiting for coincided with a step back week. I wish I could work up the energy to be disappointed, but I spent it all on setting PR’s in Week 8 :).

Week 8: 2/10/14 – 2/16/14

Monday: 5 miles, 11.19 min/mile. The fog rolled in and made it feel otherworldly.

Foggy Run

Tuesday: Foam Roll/Rest

Wednesday: 3 miles, 9:55 min/mile. PR city (unofficial)!! This is the first time I’ve finished 3 miles in under 30 minutes. I guess there’s some benefit to training after all! I’ve always felt that 10 minute miles were my own personal obstacle to get past, so it felt pretty freaking amazing to accomplish this. Don’t ask me to maintain it for long, but damn it, I can do it!

3 miles under 30

Thursday: Rest. My legs felt good, but I figured I’d give them a day to recover from the faster than average pace.

Friday: 3 miles, 11.14 min/mile.

Saturday: Rest

Sunday: 9 miles, 11:57 min/mile in perfect running weather. This is my longest run to date, and I loved every second of it. From this point forward, every week will be a new personal best for me in terms of distance, which is kind of cool. 9 miles felt better than 8 miles, and I can feel how far I’ve come in terms of endurance and fitness.

Run miles: 20 miles (probably my week of highest run volume?)

Overall: Today marks my two month period of training for my first half-marathon, and it was so rewarding to see how far I’ve come this week. I should have tried this whole concrete training plan thing earlier!

Always, Sierra

Are you training for a spring race? Or planning a spring fling get away?


Workout Recap: Half Marathon Training Weeks 5 & 6

So much to catch up on! I’m four weeks behind in my workout recaps and I want to make sure I get them posted so I can keep track of my progress. Weeks 5 & 6…let’s do this! 

Week 1/20/14 – 1/26/14

Reunion week! For the first time in two years, my three college roomies and I were in the same city and causing a ruckus like the good ole days. Andrea and Drew flew into town Wednesday from the East Coast, and Ashley came up Thursday afternoon. These gals are my sisters. Spending time with them feels like home, no matter what city we’re in.


Monday: 3 miles, 11:26 min/mile. California may be facing serious drought issues, but it’s hard not to enjoy this spring-like winter. I topped my run off with a short, leisurely hike after Pita demanded being freed from the house. 1.41 miles, 23 min/mile.

Tuesday: rest

Wednesday: rest

Thursday: 4 miles on the treadmill, 1% incline, 13 min/mile. I got stuck at work until after dark, so I took it to the belt and indulged in some of my fave shows. Danny and Mindy?! FINALLY! Looking forward to April to see how it all unravels!

Friday: Rest (And by rest I mean getting pick pocketed at a bar in the Mission and having my second smart phone stolen in the course of 6 months. For someone who rarely loses or misplaces anything, this frustrated me to no end!)

Saturday: Rest/Deliciousness

Sunday: 7 miles, 12:10 min/mile. Seven miles has never felt so good. I’m sure part of it was because I had cut back on mileage the week before so my legs were fresh, but I loved every second of this run. I came home with more energy than I left with, and decided to take Pita out on a 3.09 mile hike, 25 min/mile.

scenic runs

Run Miles: 14 miles

Hike Miles: 4.5 miles

Overall: My first week where I missed a planned run, but I knew it was a good possibility with some of my favorite people in town. I made up for it in hiking miles. C’est la vie! (Do you remember that song – so ridiculous but man I loved it!)

Week 1/27/14 – 2/2/14

Monday: Rest. Had a great day hanging out with Mom!

Tuesday: 3 miles, 10:56 min/mile. I had planned to take this one nice and easy but my legs had a mind of their own.

Wednesday: 4 miles, 11:47 min/mile.

Thursday: Rest (And I got my replacement phone that I had to pay $199 for. What’s the point of insurance I ask?)

Friday: 3 miserable miles, 12:16 min/mile. I woke up to sunshine and packed a tank top to run in. BIG mistake. It may have been sunny, but it was cold and windy and I spent 3 chilly miles regretting my wardrobe and wishing I had stayed in the car.

Saturday: 8 miles, 11:58 min/mile. This long run was not quite as easy as last week’s. Seven miles seems to be my line in the sand. Anything up to that feels doable and fairly easy, anything over that feels like my limbs are going to fall off. I got my 8 miles in and contemplated an ice bath, but just didn’t have the time for it. I had more important things to do like conquer pancakes!

irun ihop

I caught Wolf of Wall Street later that afternoon with Crystal. O.M.G. I can’t. That movie was too much! I had no idea that it was three hours long, but I felt completely enthralled for the majority of it. I don’t even want to guess at how close to the truth it was, or all the stuff that might have been left out…it was that crazy.

Sunday: Rest. And real rest, not the I’m too tired from work to do anything rest. I slept in. I got up and ate breakfast and then went back to bed to read for a while. I made cookies. We Super Bowl partied. I ate cookies. We Puppy Bowled. It was heaven.

Run miles: 18 miles

Two good weeks of quality training and quality time with quality people!

Always, Sierra

Workout Recap: Half Marathon Training Week 4, 1/13 – 1/19

It turned out to be great timing to have an extra stepback week for this week. Work picked up after the holidays, and it was nice to be able to come home and indulge in a nap instead of pushing for the mileage.

Monday: Rest

Tuesday: 3 miles, 11:10 min/mile.

Wednesday: Walk with Pita, rest

Thursday: Walk with Pita, Rest

Friday: Rest (notice a trend here?)

Saturday: 3.49 miles, 14:29 min/mile, trail run. I’m loving my new “backyard”. It’s so awesome being able to walk out the door and hit dirt in just a few.

trail run bay area

After I got my run in, the rest of the day was spent with good company and good food. That was the first plate of many, and we even shared with the coots. True story: Safeway makes delicious fried chicken.

Picnic lake merritt

{top pic courtesy of Sho}

Sunday: Guys, I’m struggling. I finally subscribe to a newspaper, and love it, and what happens? Unreliable delivery. I walked out my door this morning hoping to see a big fat paper to indulge in over breakfast, and nada.

Le Sigh.

The only solution was to console myself with pancakes. Denny’s has a new “monthly specials” menu and I went with the Baja Skillet. Pretty tasty and not too horrible nutrition wise. I had to sub the egg whites for real eggs tho – the yolk is the best part!


Pita and I headed out for a hike in the afternoon.

sunday hike

A slight breeze kept it from getting too toasty, and the only thing I regretted was forgetting my binos on the way out the door. I’m loving the gorgeous weather, but all that brown grass means trouble come summer.

sunday hike2

We covered 3.64 miles, 23:53 min/mile.

Running miles: 6.49

Total miles: 10.13

Hope you’re having a great weekend!

Always, Sierra

What’s your favorite picnic food?

Workout Recap: Week 1 Half-Marathon Training, 12/23 – 12/29

It’s official y’all. Come March 2014, I’ll be making my half-marathon debut!


I had a lot of back and forth with the Oakland Half. I’m vaguely worried of getting bored on the course since it won’t be all that new to me and parts of it are definitely not scenic. I’m also a little dubious after reading about long courses and looking at the course map with its ridiculous twists and turns. But! The Oakland Half has one big thing going for it…it’s close to enough friends and family that I’m sure I can bribe at least a couple to come out and spectate. I’m gonna need it :).

Today was Week 1 of training, also known as get back on the horse week. I’m loosely following Hal Higdon’s plan. I added an extra step back week early on to give myself some time to build up any lost fitness, for 13 total weeks of training. I’ve also added in two days of strength work and 400m repeats on alternating weeks to work a bit on speed. I’ve got it all posted on our refrigerator like a good runner in training, and I’m taking some delight in putting a big fat X through the days when I finish a workout.

Half Marathon Training Plan

Monday: 2.3 miles, 13:15 min/mile. Holy crap there are hills in my new neighborhood! It had been so long since I ran that my poor Garmin was neglected and dead, not that I really needed it. The plan was to run 3 miles, but I made it to about 2.3 miles before I called shenanigans. I finished out the three miles walking with Pita, and took it as a lesson learned about what to expect on future runs.

Tuesday: Stretch & Strength Rest. Mom came up early Tuesday and we promptly kicked Christmas Eve off with a little bit of moonshine, some shopping and failed sugar cookie making. (True Story: whole wheat flour does make a difference when the recipe calls for all-purpose).

Wednesday: 3.07 miles, 15:45 min/mile. After a morning of presents and breakfasting, I snuck out for a run. Lots of new trail to explore, and a little bit of coyote.

Trail Running, coyote

Thursday: Rest. Two to three mile walk with Mom to enjoy the pretty weather and good company.

me & mom

Friday: 3.07 miles, 12:07 min/mile. First run of the week on flat ground, and the goal was to take it easy with all of the hill running to date. Mission accomplished.

Saturday: 4.02 miles, 11:35 min/mile. Did y’all catch the UFC fights? I’ve been getting hooked this year watching TUF, the athleticism they all have is amazing. My heart broke for Anderson Silva and his leg breakage, too shocking.


And even though she didn’t win, Miesha Tate fought with her heart and looked good in the octagon.

Sunday: Walking around the flea market for a couple hours counts as cross-training right? Right! Found some cute earrings for a dollar, holla! (I couldn’t resist.)

Flea Market Finds

Running Total Miles: 12.16 miles

Overall: Off to a good and excited start. This is the first time I’ve followed a training plan of any kind, and it feels good to go out and run with purpose. Skipped strength because 1) I’m in holiday mode and 2)…yeah, that’s all I got. Making it a priority for Week 2!

Always, Sierra

Are you a UFC fan? Do you think Anderson Silva will be able to recover and come back?

Have you ever followed a Hal Higdon training plan?