S2S 5k – Week 1

The forecast for Tuesday was 1-3 inches of snow/ice mix so I moved Tuesday’s run to Monday. This might have been the best decision I made all week since when I left work on Tuesday the sidewalk was solid ice. Just walking was difficult.

My plan called for 5×1:00 at 5k effort followed by 2:00 of recovery. I ended up running 7 repetitions as part of a 5.18 mile run. I followed the run with a quick core session.

My first injury prevention day was a success! I started with a core routine that targeted my abs, back, hips, and glutes. I then moved on to strengthening my legs with squats, calf raises, hamstring curls, single leg squats and single leg calf raises. I’m pretty happy with this leg routine, but I need to add some IT band strengthening.

After focusing on strength I moved on to flexibility. I did a quick bit of foam rolling to check for any issues. Then I did some yoga and static stretching that focused on my calves, hamstrings, and hip flexors.

Easy run of 5.96 miles at an average pace of 9:29. Half of the run was into an 18 mph headwind. Not fun while running, but great training in the long run. At least I had a tailwind on the way home.

Hill repeats: 6x60s uphill with 4-5 minutes of active recovery in between. I was surprised that my plan called for such long recovery periods, but the reasoning provided was that shorter rest periods will not improve the quality of the workout but will increase the risk of injury. Since it was pretty cold out, I ended up taking only 3 minutes to recover. Any longer and I started shivering. This workout was incorporated into a 5.92 mile run.

This was my first time running hill repeats and I wasn’t quite sure how to pace myself. As a consequence I ended up running the uphills just a bit easier than I should have. I would also have preferred to take longer recovery periods so as to follow my plan correctly. Does anyone have any advice for hill repeats?

Rest day!

Another easy run that was just shy of 6 miles. 5.96 miles of puddles at an average pace of 9:11. It was around 40 degrees for this run and I felt way over dressed with tights and an UA Coldgear top.

I had to drag myself out the door on Sunday. I just did not feel like running and the first couple of miles sucked. Two miles seemed to be a turning point; after that I felt better and better with each mile ran. My “I will do 7 miles to get my weekly total to 30 miles” ended up stretching into 9.24 miles (9:32 pace).  I felt so great on Sunday that the feelings of doubt caused by such a miserable ending to the princess half have completely vanished. I thought about adding some strides to the end of this run, but I decided that the intervals on Monday and the hill repeats on Thursday were enough speed work for one week. I didn’t want to overdue it my first week of training.

The weather was once again just above 40 degrees and sunny, so I traded my tights for shorts. It felt amazing, but like Saturday, my paved trail was mostly puddles due to the melting snow. I have a feeling this will be the theme for the next couple weeks, but it sure beats freezing temperatures and snow storms!

Total Miles: 32.26


13 thoughts on “S2S 5k – Week 1

  1. Which 5k are you training for?

    I don't know if my hill repeat strategy is a good one, but I take the first repeat somewhat easy and then try to speed up each one as I go. My reasoning is that hill work uses so many different muscles that warming up on flats might not be sufficient, so I like to take a little bit to ease into the hills. 'Negative splitting' the hill repeats doesn't quite work though, I usually start to get tired and so my third or second to last is usually the fastest.


  2. Hi! I just found your blog and I love the premise. It's such a cute idea, and maybe I can convince my future Mr. Gretchruns to do a race in each state with me! I've never followed a blog of someone training for a 5k, so it'll be really interesting to see your training log and the different workouts you do. Sounds like a tough first week!

    I used to do hill repeats a lot when I did cross country and track. I usually did about 1/4 mile hill, and would aim to complete it in under 2:00, then jog back down. I would build up to about 10 repeats towards the end of my training. I would alternate this with downhill repeats using a similar strategy (just faster!) to help with other muscles as well.

    xx http://gretchruns.blogspot.com


  3. You rocked your first week of training! Way to go! I'm looking forward to seeing how the rest of your 5K training goes.

    When I do hill repeats, I try to focus more on form and technique than I do on speed/time. Because I know that no matter how fast or slow I go up them, if I'm not doing it efficiently, I'm gonna be wiped. Some people are naturally good at hills – I am not one of them, so this is what I need to focus on.

    I usually try to focus on maintaining whatever my pace was going into the hill, because for me, hill training is all about being able to run hills without breaking your pace. If I lose my momentum on a hill it takes me forever to get it back. So I'll go into the hill at a brisk pace and start focusing on my form – bringing my knees up, activating my glutes, steadying my breath, keeping my effort level even.

    I hope this helps!


  4. A very, very small 5k in northern Michigan called Shanty 2 Shorts. It runs from a ski resort called Shanty Creek to Shorts Brewing Company. I have run it the past 2 years and it is a lot of fun. I'll definitely run a couple of other 5ks this year, but this one in particular is my goal race.

    I think taking the first hill repeat slightly easy sounds smart; I'll be sure to do that next time.


  5. Hi Gretchen, welcome! I hope you are able to convince the future Mr. to run with you in every state as well. We've only just started (3 states completed), but it has been fun so far.

    I like the idea of incorporating downhill repeats into my training. My goal race has a pretty serious downhill section, so it is probably a good idea. I feel a little silly for not having thought of it earlier!


  6. Very helpful and very reassuring! Since I wasn't quite sure how hard I should be running I was pretty much just focusing on form. I don't think I'm that great at hills either–my husband LOVES them. Seriously when we are running together he will speed up for every hill and I just trying to hang with him as long as I can. Hopefully I'll be better at them after this round of training.


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