Since I am transitioning between jobs, I’ve been able to basically play professional runner for a few weeks. Unfortunately it comes at a downtime in training, but those things combined have allowed me to 1) teach a ton of Pilates and 2) start implementing a strength training routine that will hopefully become habit enough to stick when I start my new job after Thanksgiving.

This week I was able to log pretty decent mileage as I start to build back after Chicago. I raced a half marathon last weekend, and paced one this weekend, plus speedwork in between. Add two days of lower-body strength training to that, and someone get me an avocado because my legs are toast.

Monday: 5 miles easy with RR, 41 min/148 AHR, finish at the coffee shop. The day’s only workout after having raced Saturday and done strength on Sunday — I had the option to go 6 miles but I was like, no thanks.

Tuesday: 9 miles, 69 min/157 AHR. A favorite workout with intervals of 3 minutes, 2 minutes, 1 minutes hard x3. I was really consistent and covered 2.98 miles in 18 minutes, so 6:02 pace. That’s about an 18:45 5k and I ran an 18:58 in September so I’m really happy with that coming off of IMM. Plus, I was running on the roads and there were wet leaves everywhere so I was constantly swerving and hoping I didn’t land on my rump. Then I rowed 20 minutes/3750m with CS because I am a sucker. And walked 1.65 miles with Morgan.

Wednesday: 4 miles, 34 min/142 AHR. A very Wednesday Wednesday which means I did Tuesday right. Strength circuit after. Then a massage. I don’t know which felt worse — the run, the strength, or the massage. Taught Pilates that evening.

Thursday: Taught two Pilates classes in the morning. Ran in the afternoon, 6 miles, 46 min/149 AHR. This was supposed to be easy/moderate, and I got my HR into the 150-160 range for a lot of it but it was a struggle and not very fast. Then I taught Pilates again. That’s a Pilates PR — four classes in 24 hours and I could feel every bit.

Friday: 4 miles on the mill, 33 min/148 AHR. It was pretty cold outside and I was going to the gym to lift anyway, so I just hopped on the treadmill and saved myself the extra laundry. Listened to Lindsey Hein’s interview with Allie Kieffer. Strength circuit after.

Saturday: 3 mile shakeout with RR, 24 min/146 AHR, ended at coffee. COLD.

Sunday: 13 miles, 96 min/159 AHR. I told RR a while back that if she ran the Louisville Half Marathon, I’d pace her/keep her company if she wanted. Of course I told her that long before I made the last-minute decision to race IMM. RR has an almost-2-year-old, and found out she was pregnant a few days after her last race in March 2015. For her first race back she wanted to be conservative and just test the waters and see if she wanted to run races again. She wanted to run 7:30s, which I was pretty sure I could do (I averaged 6:44 at IMM, which is awkwardly about my marathon pace from Chicago four weeks before that). The course was going to be hilly AF, another reason to start off easy.

The weather turned out perfect although it was trying to rain on the drive there. There was some last-minute logistical juggling as the race directors nixed on-site parking due to flooding, but then were able to use the field after all. I met RR there and we jogged a bit of a warm-up. I dropped her off at the start and I jogged out to the 1 mile marker.

Disclaimer: This race was held mostly on a pedestrian path and they clearly stated in the race materials that it was an “open course” so I didn’t feel bad about jumping in. I carried my own water and my RoadID. Also if I had officially registered I would’ve done something stupid, like try to win.

Anyway. I hopped in with RR at mile 1, and I was able to give her a count of the number of women ahead — four — and we picked a couple to try and catch. She was spot-on 7:30s for the first 3 miles and then we came down the big hill and sped up, 7:13, 7:15, 7:12, 7:15.

We passed one woman early on the big hill, and had been passed by one woman coming up the big hill but we caught her before the turnaround at 6.5. At the turnaround we were able to determine RR was in second. Oh. That changes things. The leading female had a good gap on us, and I reminded RR to not try and close it yet. We still had to make it back up the big hill. 7:03, 7:09, and we see her husband and baby as we leave one section of the park. Then 7:26 and 7:24 coming up the hill.

It’s a big hill.

As we crested the hill, I knew RR had it and that I wasn’t doing her much good. I short-cutted across part of the course to see if I could spot the leading woman and figure out how far the gap was. (It was a lot, I couldn’t find her.) I cheered for RR at 12, then short-cutted again, then ran another 400m or so with her, then turned her loose. Second female in 1:34:03! And then we got beers. The end.

Totals: 44 miles run, 70 minutes strength, 3:45 Pilates taught, 3750 meters rowed.