Posted by: mmartininycmarathon | February 15, 2011

2 days >>> 15 miles >>> hill repeats

Hey there my loyal supporters!

So this past weekend was a successful training weekend as I was able to run 15 miles over the course of two days. Considering I had not run since the beginning of January it was alot for my body. Let’s just say I am STILL feeling the residual soreness!


Since I hadn’t run for over 3 weeks I was very anxious to get back out there and start running again. What was going to be a normal 6 mile trek turned into a 9 mile journey. Was not the easiest run but it showed me what dedication I had during the 2009 training season for the NYC Marathon.

I started off at my usual start (23rd and 5th Ave) running the usual 5th Ave route while making a pit stop at City Sports to grab some GU. I had not eaten these since last year during my PR NYC Half Marathon and while pacing butty in Boston so it took some getting used to. I bought two, eating the one immediately after purchasing and saving the other one for later (at about the 45-50 min marker). As I continued up 5th Ave to 59th street I tried to keep a decent pace knowing this run would be an extra 5k. I was averaging about 8 min miles and still felt pretty good.

Once I hit the park I knew it would become harder and as my wind starting going I tried my best to maintain but had to stop at some parts. I am aware I always go out way to fast and try and maintain a faster pace than what I can keep but over time my body will adjust and will be able to go further at a faster clip. For now, its a matter of building up.

Once I hit the infamous Cat’s Hill I decided, its hill repeats time. As many of you may not have known and/or read the training logs I posted in 2009, hill repeats are basically that. You have a pre estimated length of a hill (different grades of inclines) that you run up at a bout 85-95% of your max and once you complete one, you jog down to the start and REPEAT. After 3 to 4, if you do it right, you may decide to try and release your lunch from earlier.

Hills are my friends

On this day I was only able to do 4 as on the final repeat, my calves felt like they were going to fail me. Hill repeats is in reality, speed work in disguise. If incorporated the right way into any training program you will become faster in addition to being able to tackle a course like NYC with no problem.

After doing the set of 4 repeats I was on my way up and around Central Park to 102nd street and trying to maintain my composure and pace. If I were to tell you at this point this was fun, if I would much rather have been doing anything else besides this I would only answer with…. absolutely! But, in order for me to be up to par for some “in the near future” goals the work has to be put in now.

As I was traveling down the West side of the park (around 6-7 miles) I ran into Joanna who ran Boston last year and is an amazing runner. What made this run even more difficult was the fact that I forgot cash at the apt and never thought to stop by a bank to get cash so I could buy fluids at the vendors in the park. So for about the first 7 miles I was not hydrated. Luckily Joanna offered me some of hers which probably helped me finish up the park to get to DR and buy my own.

The final 2-3 miles of the run was pretty uneventful and was able to finish in about 1:24:30. This is the most I ran since last year but was able to finish and once again prove to myself what may seem impossible is possible if you believe in yourself.


Sunday was supposed to be a easy recovery run but turned into a high intensity 6 mile race (opponent being myself!). One thing I really have not been successful at is pacing and going slow. Like the day before, I did the usual 5th ave route working my way up to the park and completing the lower loop.

Unlike previous notions my body responded well changing speeds when needed and breaking the route down from “cool down” spots to “high intensity” sprints. I enjoy having my body respond to these situations to test my strength and make sure I am at a “normal” pace (below a target race pace). Though I had gone out fast (first mile being about a 6:12) I didn’t completely fail and was able to keep a decent pace throughout.

Final finish time was 51:00 minutes which is faster than what I had been averaging before. My best 10k time is around 43 minutes but that is about a full minute faster and when I was running consistently.

So, for the rest of the week I am attempting to log in around 25-30 miles and do a 10 mile run on Saturday. With this crazy weather fluctuating my running may follow suite and what was intended to be a 10 mile jaunt may just turn into a half marathon!

Check back later in the week and on Sunday for updates! Happy Running!



  1. Slow it down foo! You don’t wanna get injured :p.

    But its awesome you are running again.


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