Since this was my first full week back from vacation and into the normal swing of things, it felt like I was finally able to give it my all and really push myself to get into training mode for the Nike Women's 15k. In my first post last week I outlined that I was aiming for at least three runs on top of our Monday night run, and I actually pushed myself past that and managed to fit in four runs over the course of the week, focusing on increasing my endurance with a couple of longer, 6k+ runs, as well as fitting in two shorter runs to push my pace, with a total of 26k over the course of the week.
We started the week with our Rainbow Run Club on Monday night, during which we ran a quick 4k. It was a not-so-nice rainy evening, but we stuck to it and the team did great on our second official group run. We also learned about stretching before and after our runs (so essential), and the importance of paying attention to what we eat, especially incorporating lots of protein into our diets.
I've been experiencing some pain in my right knee since I started running, so I've been trying to find the perfect balance between pushing myself to work through the pain while increasing the frequency and distance I'm able to run, while paying attention to my body and not overdoing it. One of the main ways to combat runner's knee is to add strengthening and stretching to your routine, so I've been focused on that on top of my runs and have definitely noticed a difference, thankfully. I also finally invested in a new pair of running shoes, as I had previously been running in shoes I'd had for about six years (oops!), and I think that had a positive effect as well.
On top of the runs, I managed to fit in an NTC workout, as well as two ballet-inspired classes at The Extension Room (which I fell in love with this week!), helping with my strengthening and balancing out my week, fitness-wise. Both of the classes I attended were the Développé Ballet Sculpt class, which "brings attention to alignment, correct posture, and controlled muscular endurance". I'm looking forward to trying out some other classes at the studio as well, especially because the space is so incredibly beautiful, with whitewashed walls and chandeliers.
One thing I realized this week was that I really love running as part of a group, or even just one other person, finding that it really pushes me and holds me more accountable. Sometimes on my own it can be a little too easy to stop when I start to feel tired, etc., but when you're running with others, there's that extra incentive to keep going and not give up. On top of our Rainbow Run Club runs, a number of us are also linking up with the NRC 'Home Runs' on Wednesday nights, which is another great opportunity to make the whole process a little more social.
Photos: Jason Matos