Week 6 started well enough. Sunday was rest day and then Monday I began my plan to increase mileage and intensity. I ran 3 miles at 8:11 pace (fast for me). I followed up that run with a pretty intense core / strength work out that included sets of ring rows and push-ups, sit-ups and planks, and pull-ups and windshield wipers. I was fairly satisfied with my level of intensity and the amount of work I put in for what had been a non-run day in the first 5 weeks of training.
Tuesdays are team training days so I showed up at 6PM as usual. I was feeling a little tired and needed a little extra something just to get there that Tuesday. I was beginning to regret Monday’s intensity, but I was there and ready to push through nonetheless. The training plan called for a warm-up of indian runs (I realize this is no longer PC and I am sure somebody somewhere has already come up with a different name) followed by 6 Yasso 800s. These were to be 800 meter repeats at about 7:30 mile pace with a 400 meter jog in between. You can read about what a Yasso 800 is here if you are interested. I managed to get in 5 Yassos and ran/slow jogged a total of 6.3 miles. I left my watch running the entire time and because we stopped a few times my overall pace was pretty slow. In either case it was not good and I went home disgusted with myself for such a poor showing.
Wednesday I struggled to get out of bed and quickly realized my problem, I was sick. I cut myself some slack and took a sick day. Wednesday night through late Thursday I was traveling for work so I didn’t get a work out in on Thursday either. On Friday I felt even sicker. Long story short, I took 8 straight sick days. EIGHT. Really discouraged by how I was feeling, but taking some solace in the fact that I still had several weeks of training to go and maybe I could just get this sickness out of my system. Finally, on Thursday, and still not feeling good, I headed out for a crappy 4 miles. Friday I only managed 30 push-ups. Then Saturday, I pushed through for 10 slow miles with an overall 9:57 minute mile pace. Still upset with myself I decided to put in a few more miles yesterday (Sunday) so I headed out for 2 faster miles and accomplished those miles at an 8:14 mile pace.
As I write this on Monday morning, 34 days before race day, I am still blowing my nose and still a little achy, but I feel like I am back on track. Soon this sickness will be in the past and maybe I will be better from having taken off those 8 days to rest. I also have 14-days to go on my quest to lose 10 pounds through my AdvoCare Slim&Trim 28 plan. I am only down 2.4 pounds as of this morning with a weigh in of 245.3 (still beefy) pounds. I am not too worried though as the sickness greatly effected my weight loss goals. I mostly stuck to my plan, but without exercise those 8 days I actually gained some weight. I tend to feed a cold and allowed myself to over eat and/or eat bad a few times. Now that I am back on track I am fairly confident these stubborn pounds will fall off.
What I’ve learned: Sick happens. Rest when you need to and then pick up where you left off and push forward. My only regret about how I handled this sickness is the over eating I did on a few days and I maybe could have got in some core work and stretching even if I was not able to run. I also figured out that starting my run with a halls cough drop in my mouth really helps clear those nasal passages.
What I will change these next couple weeks: Trying to implement what I had planned before I got sick. Adding an extra running day to increase my mileage. Step up the intensity a little with my core work. More focus on diet. And because of the added intensity, I will pay extra attention to recovery and my sleep habits. I want to stay healthy.