Today's Mighty Oak


This was one of those weeks that wore me down. I had to remind myself that I’m over halfway through this plan, I’m supposed to be a bit worn down. But I also look at a 50K I have this weekend don’t feel in any way prepared.

I do think I’m at least tolerating the heat a little better. I’m not used to it or acclimated, but at least I’ve made some progress.

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 5 miles. Tiny loops.
  • Wednesday: 10 miles. Back to the trail.
  • Thursday: 9 miles, on the trail.
  • Friday: Rest.
  • Saturday: 15 miles. Incredibly humid.
  • Sunday: 14 miles. Also incredibly humid. Weather said it was going to rain, but ended up being sunny and hot, so a big disappointment. I did stop at Speedway on the way home for an $0.89 Coke Slushie, which was perfect and may become somewhat of a tradition as long as the temperatures stay high.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Bobo’s Bar.
  • BWF/Core work: None specifically, will get back to it next week.
  • Yoga: I didn’t have a chance to do a yoga class this week, hoping to get back to it!
  • Stretching: Missed a couple days, but got back to it at the end of the week.


I feel like every training cycle I have a week like this, so maybe it was good to get it out of the way, but man, it just wore me down (and it was a down week in terms of mileage!). Humidity was through the roof all week, temperatures are climbing and I feel like I’m just not acclimated to the heat yet.

On top of that, had some pretty bad knee pain for a few days. Nothing that some extra stretching, icing and adjusting some sleeping positions didn’t fix, but certainly something I want to keep an eye on. I feel like I usually have some sort of minor injury during a training cycle, but usually it’s my IT Band, not my kneecap.

Part of what added to the injury is running on cement for sure. I’m still not quite ready to go back to the gym (I’d rather wait until a month or so after mask mandates are lifted, just to keep an eye on numbers), plus running outside is the only way to heat acclimate, so it’s better training for me (except on thunderstorm days) to run outside.

I’m really not sure what my goal should be for Miakonda. It’s my first in-person race after being vaccinated, but I choose it since teammates will be there and it has a small attendance cap, a nice way to ease back into races. I know that so much of how the day goes will be weather dependent. A bright, sunny day will end my running pretty quickly, especially with added heat and humidity, so I’ll have to do some goal setting the week/day of. On top of that, I don’t know if I should use this race to train for O24 (24 hours), Eagle Up (81 miles) or maybe see if I can instead PR my 100K.

Lots to think about and lots to plan, and at the same time, so much beyond my control. Either way though, halfway done!

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 2 miles. Planned on doing more, but as I was running (tiny loops), I saw the lightning and called it early. I don’t mess with lightning or ice!
  • Wednesday: 10 miles. Back to the trail.
  • Thursday: Unexpected rest day. Knee felt awful so I took an extra day off for more stretching and some icing. Seems to have done the trick and I’ve added a new stretch into my routine and modified another one. Running on cement (tiny loops) is certainly a factor though, I’ll certainly be aiming to get to the trail even more.
  • Friday: 7 miles, tiny loops. Ran nice and slow and I cut out speed work this week to give my knee a bit of extra rest.
  • Saturday: 21 miles.
  • Sunday: 4 miles.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Bobo’s Bar, Gu.
  • BWF/Core work: None specifically, will get back to it next week.
  • Yoga: I didn’t have a chance to do a yoga class this week, hoping to get back to it!
  • Stretching: I did my stretching routine after every run, and added in and modified some stretches to help with knee pain, which seemed to do the trick!


Lots of heat, lots of rain and lots of schedule swaps this week, but I made it all work! Hard to believe I’m almost halfway done with this training cycle. I’m certainly dreading the heat this summer, but know I need to train in it for the race itself, and while I still feel a lot slower than where I was a year ago, I’m honestly not that far behind where I was, so hopefully I can work on the mental side of things a bit as we approach race day.

  • Monday: 10 miles. Headed down to the trail after work.
  • Tuesday: 8 miles. Tiny loops. Speedwork: Tempo – 18min/4R/12min
  • Wednesday: 10 miles. Back to the trail.
  • Thursday: 5 miles. Wasn’t sure I’d be able to get this run in, but the timing worked out just right!
  • Friday: Rest.
  • Saturday: Rest, at least in terms of running. Went up to camp to help out with Beaver Day. We got all the canvas up across the reservation, as well as a myriad of other tasks. I spent the morning getting the Camp Freedom office opened before jumping on a tent crew on the Ridge in the afternoon.
  • Sunday: 22 miles. The second half of this was super hot, with limited cloud cover. The day turned out to have a heat advisory as the day went on, so stupid heat training for me.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Bobo’s Bar, Gu.
  • BWF/Core work: Beaver Day provided an ample workout.
  • Yoga: I didn’t have a chance to do a yoga class this week, hoping to get back to it!
  • Stretching: I did my stretching routine after almost every run, I missed one, but otherwise am still doing really well with this.


This week started out hot, had some great weather on the weekend for running and is the first half of two just bonkers week schedule wise. Everything is reopening and starting back up and I’m being pulled in way too many directions.

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 5 miles. Tiny loops.
  • Wednesday: 10 miles. More tiny loops.
  • Thursday: Rest.
  • Friday: 9 miles, Tempo workout: 18min/4R/12min. Headed down to the trail after work to start off the long weekend with a very wet run in the rain. Was a good run, and I’m glad to have gotten back to speedwork after a week off. One tree was down, but it was cleaned up by the next day (and easy enough to get around).
  • Saturday: 12 miles. Back to the trail (but a different starting point). Weather was overcast and perfect for a run.
  • Sunday: 15miles. Back to the trail once more.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Bobo’s Bar, Gu.
  • BWF/Core work: No Zombies, Run this week. Need to get back to it.
  • Yoga: I didn’t have a chance to do a yoga class this week, hoping to get back to it!
  • Stretching: I did my stretching routine after every run!


This week was brutally hot. No cloud cover or rain, temperatures above 85, tons of dust from the trail and pollen exploding into the air. It’s all good training (well, except for the dust in my eyes and throat, that’s just annoying), but when there’s no canopy cover it is just oppressive.

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 5 miles. Tiny loops.
  • Wednesday: 9 miles. I headed to the trail (starting from a different trailhead) for something different. It was ridiculously humid and I was covered in bugs by the time I left (thanks, creek), but still the right choice, I’ll do it again this week.
  • Thursday: 5 miles. Was supposed to be 7 miles and was supposed to be a tempo workout. The sun beat me down, after 9 minutes into the workout portion I had to call it quits. Not a total waste, obviously, but a bit demoralizing and just rough on my body.
  • Friday: Rest.
  • Saturday: 22 miles. Made up the most miles from Thursday, but again, still really warm, but an early start helped mitigate that.
  • Sunday: 10 miles. Got a later start than I wanted, so it was warmer than I had hoped, but it wouldn’t have made that big of a difference anyway. Did have a pleasant surprise passing one of the Frontrunners! We stopped to chat briefly, it was nice to see him since I hadn’t in a while and I never expect anyone from the group to be on this trail since it’s outside the city.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Bobo’s Bar, Gu.
  • BWF/Core work: No Zombies, Run this week. My goddaughter’s second birthday party was Sunday and the timing didn’t work out, but the amount of moving supplies and equipment was a decent workout!
  • Yoga: I didn’t have a chance to do a yoga class this week, hoping to get back to it!
  • Stretching: I did my stretching routine after every run!


Some more shuffling around of days this week, and it was a down week, which was a nice bit of . Went to Cleveland to make pierogies with friends, which was a ton of fun, and even though we were all vaccinated, we moved it outside which gave us a lot more room and was a really good setup!

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 5 miles. Tiny loops.
  • Wednesday: 8 miles. More tiny loops
  • Thursday: 7 miles. Tempo workout: 14 minutes/4 minutes recovery/12 minutes 5K pace.
  • Friday: 5 miles before an early night and wake up call to drive to Cleveland the next morning.
  • Saturday: Rest, pierogie day!
  • Sunday: 14 miles. Was a nice run, and then a day filled with errands, but I kind of knew that going in. There was drama on the trail’s Facebook page as someone was complaining that the trail doesn’t allow horses (even after we’re all now pretty sure she was the one riding her horses on the trail). She also, decided that the trial was ‘elitist’ for not allowing horses. Never in my life would I have had ‘horse owner calls runners and dog walkers elitist’ on my bingo card, but here we are. Pictures below, because, come on, this is just too wild!
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Bobo’s Bar.
  • BWF/Core work: Another Zombies, Run: The Home Front workout, this one was mission 10, the last of their first batch, it’s interesting hear this little bit of a time capsule.
  • Yoga: Did a really great class of Friendly Yin Yoga, this one was focused on hips, so I’ll for sure be coming back to do this one again!
  • Stretching: I did my stretching routine after every run!


The triumphant return of PRANK! As the event was called, “PRANK got all our shots and we’re shaking off the winter SADs,” and it was so wonderful to run with people again! And just like any good PRANK it included snacks, questionable routes, teenagers running with us for about a block and even a wave from another runner across the street in the middle of the night! Otherwise, had to do a lot of shuffling days around this week due to schedules, but I got it all in, and had a really good speed workout!

  • Monday: 8 miles. Tiny loops in the neighborhood.
  • Tuesday: 5 miles. More tiny loops.
  • Wednesday: Rest.
  • Thursday: 7 miles. Tempo workout: 14 minutes/4 minutes recovery/12 minutes 5K pace. Nailed it!
  • Friday: PRANK! Two loops (or two and a half, since we merged two together on the last one), 13 miles.
  • Saturday: Rest.
  • Sunday: 18 miles. The clouds opened up after five miles and I got soaked in a cold, cold rain. Never let up the rest of the day. Wanted to do two more to get my first 20-miler under my belt this cycle, but I did extra at PRANK and my hands were frozen so I called it at 18.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Bobo’s Bar, Gu.
  • BWF/Core work: Got Zombies, Run: The Home Front to work on my other phone so did a bodyweight workout. It’s becoming a nice little habit as I put clean laundry away on Sunday evenings.
  • Yoga: Got halfway through my practice and was just not in a mental state to continue so I called it early. Still some good stretching and some good progress, just not my day. But that’s okay!
  • Stretching: I did my stretching routine after every run!


The weather was a bit goofy, and Sunday was brutal under the sun (but I wore sunscreen), but I remind myself it’s good training. Otherwise, good week, although my schedule is a bit goofy this upcoming week, so I know things will be shuffled around quite a bit. It’s also hard to believe this is one quarter of my plan done and under my belt already!

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 6 miles. Tiny loops in the neighborhood.
  • Wednesday: 8 miles. Speedwork at the track, VO2 Max: 2×1200, 2×1000, 2×800. My last VO2 Max workout this cycle!
  • Thursday: 4 miles. Tiny loops.
  • Friday: Rest.
  • Saturday: 18 miles. Early run, then volunteered with Gay4Good (more on that below) and then a campfire for a friend’s birthday, busy day!
  • Sunday: 12 miles. Back to the trail for these after a very busy day. Temperature wasn’t bad, but no clouds meant the sun was just brutal.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Bobo’s Bar.
  • BWF/Core work: Zombies Run keeps crashing (I’m working with tech support), but spent most of my volunteer time with Gay4Good filling sandbags for Grow Pittsburgh, so a good workout! We also all walked down the street to grab food from food trucks after, and it was so nice to spend time with those friends!
  • Yoga: Adding it’s own bullet point here, the goal is to do a yoga class each week. Two weeks in a row now! I’ve found a wonderful instructor online and really like how she teaches, and I think I’m really enjoying Yin Yoga, now that it’s been explained to me!
  • Stretching: I did my stretching routine after every run!


I’m finally registered for my fall race, Miakonda! It’s a very limited field, and (fingers-crossed) vaccinations should be really good by then, so I felt comfortable signing up for it. It’s the first year for it, but it’s run by a great organizing group and members of PRorER will be there, so I’m really looking forward to it.

I’m still not quite sure what my goal is going to be. The course video looks like standard camp roads and trails, which I run in road shoes, but the website says to bring trail shoes (I’ll bring both), so I may play it a little by ear to see what I end up doing that day. This is the plan I made to get myself to 81 miles, but I feel like I’ve lost some significant fitness from the colitis; or I can use this as a test for a full 24 hours, as training for next year’s O24. So many choices!

It’s also Labor Day Weekend, so fingers crossed it isn’t too toasty, but after last year training in the heat, and doing it again for this race, we’ll see how I do. It is ‘third time’s the charm’ for this training plan, but of course, depending on how things go, I’ll probably use it again for what I have planned in 2022.

Either way, I’m excited to be registered and committed, and I’m so excited to see some of my running family again soon!

Anyway, this week of training included my second vaccine shot. Like the first, I had a bit of a fever overnight and felt a little crummy, but bounced back fairly well. I think I’m still feeling a bit under the weather, but nothing too terrible.

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 8 miles. Tiny loops in the neighborhood.
  • Wednesday: 8 miles. Speedwork at the track, VO2 Max: 2 sets of 2×1200, 1×800
  • Thursday: 5 miles. Tiny loops.
  • Friday: Rest.
  • Saturday: 6 miles. Stopped at a trail on the way back from my second shot. Was a nice day and good time on a newish trail to me!
  • Sunday: 18 miles. Woke up feeling crappy after not having slept much, and knew I could take the day off due to my shot. Was feeling better, so went out at noon. Getting a late start was weird, and my legs were trashed by the end, I think the vaccine took more out of me than I realized.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Gu, Bobo’s Bar.
  • BWF/Core work: Another mission of Zombies, Run: The Home Front. I also added in a class of Friendly Yin Yoga, hoping to keep that up, I really enjoyed her teaching style!
  • Stretching: I did my stretching routine after every run!


Weird week weather wise, and this week will be a lot more of the same (looking at you, snow predicted for Wednesday). I’m also already planning on a missed run if I need to, I have my second vaccine shot this weekend and if it puts me down for a few days, I’d much rather deal with a missed long run than COVID.

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 6 miles. Tiny loops in the neighborhood.
  • Wednesday: 7 miles. Speedwork at the track, VO2 Max: 2 sets of 2×1200, 1×800
  • Thursday: 4 miles. Tiny loops.
  • Friday: Rest.
  • Saturday: 5 miles. More tiny loops.
  • Sunday: 13 miles. Just a weird run, weather wise (and this week will be strange too). Started off freezing in the 30s, but still a lot of sun, so outside of the shade I warmed up quick. Bit of fog to burn off and then not a cloud in the sky, making it feel a lot warmer than it actually was.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Gu
  • BWF/Core work: Finished up the next mission of Zombies, Run!: Home Front, great to hear Peter again. I’d also like to incorporate a yoga class each week, so I need to try a few online courses I’ve had my eyes on for a while.
  • Stretching: I did my stretching routine after every run!

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