A Different Kind of Long Run

Despite my injury, I still have my eyes set on running the Philadelphia Half Marathon, which is less than two weeks away. I haven’t done a long run since the one that triggered the injury, and I’ve been worried about not getting in enough mileage to be prepared.

On Thursday during my PT session, we talked about how I’ve been missing my long runs and I asked her if there was anything I could do. Since the onset of the injury, I’ve been able to comfortably run 4 or 4.5 miles, so she suggested I run 4, do 4 on the elliptical, and then get back to running for the last 2-3 and see how it felt.

So yesterday, I did just that!

Since the weather has been a lot cooler lately, I didn’t even set an alarm and just let myself wake up naturally. I had an English muffin with mashed banana for a pre-run breakfast:

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Got myself geared up:

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And out I went! I ended up wearing running crops, a running tank and sports bra, and then a running jacket over it. This way, I could do the first part of the run outside, take the jacket off when I got to the gym, and then put it back on for my walk home from the gym, and it worked out quite well.

Breaking up the run into 3 segments also worked really well because each of them felt manageable. The weather was a little chilly but perfect for running, and the first 4 miles outside went smoothly, except that I pressed reset mid-run on my running app…

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= 4.01 in 34:43, or an 8:39 pace.

I ended the 4 miles right by my gym, and it actually was great because I got a drink and used the bathroom before hopping on the elliptical for the next segment.

I used this elliptical:

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Which I’d never used before, but this sign got me:

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The 4 miles on the elliptical were uneventful…

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And EXTREMELY fast. Too bad I can’t run at an 5:39 pace in real life…

After the elliptical portion, I got another drink of water and took an Espresso GU.

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I’d never tried that flavor before, and it was pretty good, but Vanilla Bean still has my heart.

After refueling, I hopped on the treadmill for the last part of this run to knock out 3 miles.

I started at 6.0 mph, and upped it by .1 every couple minutes, ending on 6.8 mph.

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In the end, I finished the 3.0 miles in 28:15, or a 9:25 average pace.

And then, at long last, I was done and super sweaty!

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I stretched a ton and foam rolled out my legs and IT band, and then called it a day.

After I was done, I kind of felt like I had cheated. Since 4 of the miles were on the elliptical and those miles went SO MUCH quicker, and were so much easier on my body, I just felt like I hadn’t actually done the mileage. But the truth is, I was doing the opposite of cheating – I was doing what’s good for my body right now. It took a little bit of a self pep talk (in my head, don’t worry), but I was able to walk out of the gym feeling proud.

As I should have been! I got 11 miles under my belt, no matter the method, plus 1 hour, 25 minutes, and 36 seconds of cardio, which is the farthest and longest I’ve gone in a LONG time. Here’s to hoping I feel this great in 2 weeks!

14 Comments on A Different Kind of Long Run

  1. lisa fine
    November 5, 2012 at 8:54 am (8 years ago)

    That totally works. If you’re getting a running kind of motion, and getting your heart rate up, then it counts.

    I’ve also read that water running is just as good as running outside, but causes very little stress on the body.

  2. Daphne @ Daphne Alive
    November 5, 2012 at 9:56 am (8 years ago)

    Good job! 🙂 It’s rough when you have an injury and sometimes the time it takes to recover is frustrating.

  3. Kris
    November 5, 2012 at 10:01 am (8 years ago)

    Try increasing the resistance on the elliptical – you’ll work a lot harder and run a lot slower. I have a knee injury and cannot run on concrete, so to keep things interesting I increase the resistance every half mile.

  4. Jennifer
    November 5, 2012 at 10:31 am (8 years ago)

    Congrats! That’s excellent! Sounds like you’ve found a good way to do your runs but do it safely. Excited for you to run the Philly Half!

  5. Life's a Bowl
    November 5, 2012 at 2:50 pm (8 years ago)

    Congrats on the success! I’m not a trained anything so I can’t say that it’s fact, but I’ve heard that mixing running + other forms of “running” cardio has proven to be effective! I hope it’s true for you 🙂

  6. Carrie @ Season It Already!
    November 7, 2012 at 10:03 am (8 years ago)

    Never thought about adding the elliptical to finish off a run with less impact. But sounds like a no brainer!

  7. Lauren
    November 8, 2012 at 6:51 am (8 years ago)

    🙁 Not trying to be naggy, but are you going to get back to your weigh-ins? Loved them!

    • Beth
      November 8, 2012 at 9:01 am (8 years ago)

      Hi Lauren! You’re not being naggy! I was in San Fran two weeks ago, and then last week WW was closed due to Sandy, but i did weigh in Tuesday, just haven’t gotten around to making a vlog. Regular ones will resume next week – I enjoyed making them, too!

      • Nikki
        November 14, 2012 at 10:37 pm (8 years ago)

        Good to hear! I have been checking back lots to see how you are doing. I need some inspiration!
        I look forward to next week’s vlog.

  8. Jen (a low carb gal)
    November 9, 2012 at 9:37 am (8 years ago)

    Good luck with the marathon. I hope you will be feeling better. Love the mashed banana and English muffin breakfast!

    • Beth
      November 9, 2012 at 2:05 pm (8 years ago)

      Thanks Jen!! It’s a great pre-run “meal” because it has so many carbs but isn’t heavy!

  9. Roz@weightingfor50
    November 13, 2012 at 1:40 pm (8 years ago)

    I love the line ‘doing what is good for my body right now”. You are wise Beth, we could ALL learn much from you. Fingers crossed that you are able to run the marathon! Have a great day.


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