I was due for a scale-back.
So I took one last week. No frills. No guilt. No regrets.
Have you ever taken a scaled back week? I know most of us talk about them, and we all know we need them...but, let's be honest. They are tough to commit to.
I love hosting this link-up with Deborah (from Confessions of a Mother Runner)! If you write a fitness-based blog, you're invited to join the party. The link-up opens at 1:00 (EST) on Sundays and remains open through noon on Monday. We love reading about everyone's weekly fitness endeavors, training highlights (or low lights) and race recaps. We ask that you link back to both hosts, and we encourage you to read/comment on the other linked blogs as well...please don't link-drop & dash ;-)
Anyways, here's what went down in my little world of (scaled-back) fitness this week:
Monday - never-miss-a-Monday (especially on Memorial Day)
Something I've meant to do, then forgotten every year until after the fact, was register with Wear Blue: Run to Remember. In doing so, you're assigned a fallen hero to run in memory of on Memorial Day. Well, this year, I remembered to register. I received two honorees ...USMC Cpl. Terrence C. Allen (KIA, Al Anbar Province 9/15/07) and USAF Sgt. Dylan Jasso (KIA, Kabul 11/27/18) . Since I felt these two gentlemen deserved my undivided attention, I elected to postpone my (usual) 5K time trial until later in the week. Besides, I didn't want any music in my ears, nor my Garmin buzzing on my wrist. The 5K route I'd chosen took me out near the edge of town...and although I'd seen this mural many times before, it caught my attention on Memorial Day.
|No Garmin, but my new Road ID US Air Force tag and my OORAH bracelet from MCM|
Okay, remember that commitment to a scaled-back week? It actually didn't start until Tuesday because I snuck in a Murph workout in Monday's early afternoon heat (see below). I woke up with a few Murph DOMS (my pecs were on fire, and my shoulders were "smoldering" a bit as well). The hubby and I took Max out for a couple miles of walking before work, and that (along with more walking later) sufficed for the day.
Amazingly, I never had any DOMS from all the Murph squatting, but I still wanted to keep things on the down-low. Instead of our usual #5at5 (5-mile run at 05:00), Barb and I met up for a #10at545 (you know, 10-mile bike ride at 05:45). Have I mentioned how much I adore the sunrise? Well, let me assure you it looks just as glorious on a bike as it does on foot. And, my legs appreciated the low-impact cardio, courtesy of Gustavas.
Although things were feeling great (even my wonky left hip, that's been a little out-of-sorts recently), I fought the temptation and kept the running shoes out of reach. I'd planned on doing some elliptical time, but when I saw there was "only" a 40% chance of rain (instead of 95%, as had been forecast), I laced up and headed out for a 2-mile walk instead. What would you have done? BTW, the rain came shortly after I'd arrived back home and continued most of the day.
Friday's Postponed UN-Canceled 5K
As mentioned, with Monday's Wear Blue: Run to Remember run, my UN-Canceled Project 5K got moved to Friday. As per usual, I ran a 1/2-mile to the "race site" as a warm-up (and then back home, afterwards, as a cool-down), got my GPS signal, and took off. A lot of things were different with this run...the time of day (I'd done all the other 5K time trials after work, except for one that I'd run over lunch), the nearly perfect weather (umm... temps in the low-50F's and nearly no wind), and my attitude. The previous week's 5K had been a major struggle bus endeavor, so this week's goal was to simply run strong and not think about my mile splits (and hopefully beat last week's time in the process). The 3-day sabbatical from running had given my wonky hip enough downtime to feel better (though, still a bit stiff). Thankfully, this run felt nearly effort-less and I was able to sub-27 (which is my usual 5K "benchmark"). Mission accomplished. The theme of JOY was most appropriate.
A (somewhat) long run Saturday with a virtual 5K sandwiched in
Thanks to Darlene, I'd won a free registration for the Freihofer's Run for Women virtual 5K (and it was fun running "together" virtually with her and Debbie and Cari). I was eager to get a decent "longish" run in as well. Barb and I met at 6:00, and ran a couple miles. I reset my Garmin for the 5K, saved the "race" (for submittal), then we continued on for a total of eight miles for the morning. I joked that my body was in a "5K hangover" state (you know, those DOMS that we all know and love) from Friday's early morning tempo-ish jaunt, so things felt a bit sluggish. Later, I had a couple of hours of intense garden squats on the agenda and the hubs and I went for a 7-mile bike ride before dinner. Believe me, when I runfess, my body was tired.
Another sunrise (recovery) adventure was in order, and the hubby came along for the ride (literally). Wow. I'm thankful my body likes the early mornings because I'd be missing some beautiful #artgeek moments if I slept-in. Max was waiting by the front window when we returned from our 10-mile ride, so we harnessed him up and took him for a 2-mile walk. I have another afternoon of garden squats on tap, so don't be jealous.
So, a scaled-back week (in terms of running), but still plenty of low-impact stuff happening. The running miles were conservative (17) and walking miles were capped out at 22. Strength training was focused mainly on Monday's Murph workout, but I did add in a short upper-body workout Saturday evening. And let's not forget biking! Gustavas and I pedaled 27 miles this week.
In case you missed out, here's what went down on the blog this week:
In other news:
Friday Fashion Flair! This week's featured outfit included all things black and white, as well as a splash of kelly green, a color we don't see very often. It's hard to see in the pic, but the shirt has rouching on both side seams, which gives it a lot of detail as well as a flattering fit.That's a definite win-win in my book.As always, you're welcome to join me on Fridays...post a pic on Instagram, grab the hashtag (#FridayFashionFlair) and be sure to tag me (@runningonthefly).
A new thing I have been doing is laying out my "Long Run Preview" on Friday evenings. Similar to a Race Day Preview (or a "flat runner"), it's a chance to celebrate the weekend running (since there's no real racing happening for any of us). Most of us are doing long runs, so why not have a little fun with it?
All the Memorial Day Murph FOMO got to me. I'd done the Murph Challenge last year, (recap) and unofficially committed to doing it every Memorial Day going forward. With my scaled-back week already underway, though, I was going to let it pass. Besides, the CrossFit gym wasn't open (I know, #excuses). The more I thought about it, though, the more I felt compelled to do the workout anyways...so I decided to do a modified version. I ran both the 1-mile run before (and after), but did half of all the reps: 50 (modified) pull-ups (instead of 100), 100 push-ups (instead of 200), and 150 squats (instead of 300). And, I did all of this, outside, in the 85F (feels-like) temps, in my backyard (because, why not?). I timed myself (only because that seems to be the protocol), finishing in 43:04, and was amazed that I managed to run my last mile 30 seconds faster than my first (though it certainly did NOT feel like it at the time). Oh well, at least I opted to not wear the 20-lb weighted vest LOL.
Finally, I'm not going to elaborate on the events of this week. I'll just say that I'm sickened and heartbroken... not just by what happened in Minneapolis, but also by what's continued to happen in the aftermath. I'll continue to pray for peace, respect and justice for everyone.
So, that's another week all wrapped up. May is (almost) history, and June is knocking at the door...and I'm ready for summer!
How did the final week of May play out for you? Any tribute runs for Memorial Day or virtual races happen? Upcoming summer events? Are you as eager for summer running as I am?
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I am 100% guilty as charged about not taking cutback weeks. I was introduced to them in the training program I did last summer, there's no downside since you get to run less and then have a really great week afterwards when you ramp back up...but I just don't do them. I ended up doing one this week b/c the heat flattened me so next week should be good. Let's do a trade, anytime you get rain you can send it to me and anytime we get super hot I'll send that over to you. Sound like a plan? ;-)ReplyDelete
Deal!!!! You can have my rain, and I'll gladly take your heat!Delete
I love the idea of giving the fallen soldiers your undivided attention.ReplyDelete
So fun to run "with" you, and I'm glad we all had such beautiful weather. It would have been kind of funny if one of us was overcast.
Funnily enough, a local running friend just talked about a 5K hangover this week too. It's real, especially if you time trial or race it.
I think "hangover" is an appropriate metaphor. After all, the DOMS do stem from over-indulging ;-)Delete
I love your virtual run collage! So fun! Not sure how you can do 150 squats and not feel it later but props to you!ReplyDelete
I'm not sure how the DOMS were MIA from all those squats...unless it was the garden squatting/stretching that followed? Could I call that "garden yoga?"Delete
Yup I scaled it back this week too. I was just feeling very tired. I took Saturday off and have not decided about today yet. Cute photo collage!ReplyDelete
The temptation to run a few miles this morning was overwhelming, but I opted for riding instead. I'm sure a recovery run would have felt just as good, but the ride (with the hubby) was a nice change of routine.Delete
Loving the photo from your virtual run yesterday - so cute! It's nice to still feel connected via virtual races.ReplyDelete
Love your variety of workouts this week - especially murph and your outdoor bike rides :)
I'm glad to be bringing back the bike rides! They feel so good, and almost feel like I'm cheating on my cardio (if I'm riding in town and not on the crazy hilly bike path) LOLDelete
Ah, finally an effortless sub-27 for the 5K! Your perseverance paid off and all the stars aligned - no wind, perfect temps, right time of day, running rest, right mindset - and there we are.ReplyDelete
I love that photo from Saturday's virtual run! That fits nicely in the Uncanceled theme for next week - community. ;-)
This 5K finally was what I've been working towards...a tempo-like pace without over-doing it. I still felt it the next morning (my quads did LOL), but not as severe as if I'd truly "raced" it. We'll see what these next three (the final three!) have in store...Delete
Congrats on the Murph AND 5k!! Sounds like a great virtual run and nice variety of workouts.ReplyDelete
The Murph and Friday's 5K were the main "effort" workouts this week. I tried to keep everything else as low-key as possible...and everything seemed to work out as planned. Whew! That doesn't happen as smoothly every week ;-)Delete
Oddly enough, all my 5ks went well, and then today's short long run -- yeah, not so much. And the weather was great for running (although actually too chilly to eat outside again).ReplyDelete
I've been doing just a little more ST (nothing like Murph) -- I keep thinking I'm going have some serious DOMs, but most of time I don't. And when I feel a little bit, it's just that oh hey muscles, we've actually lifted something. :)
You are probably doing just the right amount of yoga to keep all your muscles happy ;-)Delete
I kind of had a cutback week this week, in that I only got 4 runs in (I'm running two days, off one, so one week in three I think I end up doing 4 runs) so I did a lower distance. But really it just rolls on. I usually only take rest weeks if I'm doing mara training with the longer runs, but I might pull back my long run one weekend soon. Well done on your memorial run and workout.ReplyDelete
The cutback weeks vary for me as well. Sometimes I try to factor them in every 3-4 weeks, other times not. I can usually tell when my body is ready for a little more downtime LOLDelete
Good job scaling it back. Our bodies do need it! And I'm guilty of skipping them. That's great that your husband went on that early ride! It's a challenge getting anyone out of my house with me until after 9am. But hey, I do enjoy the "me" time!ReplyDelete
The hubby is usually in a zombie-like state when I'm up in the morning, but he'd mentioned riding with me (before bed), so it wasn't too hard to rile him when I was getting ready to head out.Delete
You still did quite a lot for a cutback week, but there’s no surprise there! Love the sunrise bike rides!ReplyDelete
Well, for me, the walking and biking are more recovery vices. Until I start hitting the hilly bike trail, most of my in-town rides aren't too strenuous.Delete
I'm normally not good at taking cutback weeks, but since I've been injured I feel like I've had a cutback winter/spring. LOLReplyDelete
It was so fun running virtually with you yesterday! So happy you and the other ladies liked Bill's handy work with the collages - it was fun putting it together!
Cutbacks are tough...my mind and body are used to doing something every day, even if it's just a walk. It's been a long time since I've gone with a 3-day gap in running.Delete
The bike ride at 5:45 sounds so great! You did well this week. I am not really a fitness blogger, although I like to share when I've reached my step goal on my Fitbit, so I have no idea about the necessity or not of cutback weeks.ReplyDelete
Cutback weeks are often figured into training plans, especially if one is working toward a big goal that involves a lot of "build-up" (increased miles run, or increased weight-training, for example). They work like a mini vacation ;-)Delete
I like that = physically apart but virtually together. So fun to share my 5k with others.ReplyDelete
Can't wait to run a real one!!
Your scaled back week is more active than most people's active week lol
Well, the running took a 3-day sabbatical, and the strength work had a 5 day gap....that's a major scale-back for me ;-)Delete
Scratching my head at running an 8 miler followed by a 5k as part of a scaled back week. LOL. Love the photo of all of you guys together.ReplyDelete
Well, maybe not in your world, but it was for me LOL. I've never taken a 3-day gap in running or a 5-day break from strength work, all in the same week.Delete
You had quite the busy Saturday! Love the virtual "group" photos :)ReplyDelete
THanks for the link up!
Thanks, Michelle ;-) I think you and I need to do a virtual run!Delete
Awesome week Kim! I like the idea of the long run preview, since there are no flat me's for race these days.ReplyDelete
Thanks for hosting the link-up!
Right? I'm just trying to keep a sense of humor in the midst of all this craziness ;-)Delete
Great job on the Murph challenge! Even scaled back, it is such an intimidating workout and you crushed it. I'm generally good about taking cutback weeks; if anything, I'm probably too regimented about them!ReplyDelete
Murph is definitely a tough workout...as it should be. Someday,I hope to do the entire thing, unassisted. Not any time soon, ha!Delete
I love a good cut back week. They are just what I need to reset and feel good again. Nice work on Murph! I've never done it but it looks intimidating just by the numbers.ReplyDelete
I've only done it twice, so I'm certainly no expert. The guy who instructed me last year, though, recommended breaking it down into segments or circuits to give the muscle groups a bit of recovery in between sets.Delete
I am pretty good about taking cutback weeks during training. Right now it gets tricky to build them in. I've just found some some weeks I naturally end up running less. We all need weeks like that sometimes!ReplyDelete
Totally! I'm kind of in a routine, but it's certainly not regimented. It just felt like a good time to regroup and scale back.Delete
I usually just do what my body wants or feels like. But I will be starting training soon so we'll see what happens.ReplyDelete
I think it's best to listen to your body...it usually will tell you if it needs a break.Delete
I've been scaled back for quite some time. It's not my favorite state of being, so now I just want to go go go.ReplyDelete
I did do a Memorial Day themed virtual on Saturday, and walked in memory of our soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice on Monday.
I, too, am heartbroken by the state of things. <3
I know how you feel with wanting to go go go ;-) Once things start moving and progressing, it's really hard to slow down.Delete
What a month! I am also sad with everything that is happening. I LOVE that run collage! I see the theme was purple?ReplyDelete