Well into week 16 as I write this and still pretty happy with how weeks 12 and 13 went. I'm into cutback weeks in terms of mileage, and I'm not mad about it. When you spend every day worrying about the pain of your next run, less miles doesn't sound so bad. No special pace instructions, no workouts, just time on my feet and it was time well spent. Added bonus? Having one of your run family members come visit for the weekend! 

The runs leading into the weekend of week 12 were uneventful and steady. I got two days of hip-specific strength work in there as well, and I know it will start to pay off. I was really looking forward to Jenn getting into town and taking her over to Umstead for our long run. She's been doing some SERIOUS work in her training and I wasn't sure I'd be able to keep up with her, she's tough AF. We ended up having a great run, my hips were so well behaved and I got to share the magic tree with my girl. Also, possibly, pie for breakfast. 

When we weren't running, we watched Pitch Perfect 3 (and 1, at least twice), drank beer, ate cookies, and just had a really chill time. I had no idea how much I needed that time until I got it. So grateful. 

 cookies and smiles!

cookies and smiles!

Week 12 summary: 
Miles scheduled: 33
Miles ran: 33
Time on my feet: 6:18:29

Week 13 had me a little nervous, my hips were progressively achier as each run went by. I was taking more walk/stretch breaks than I would like and I could feel frustration building. I know that strength doesn't come overnight, nor do imbalances and weaknesses resolve themselves quickly either, but by Saturday morning I was looking for a good reason not to do my long run. I felt like I could sleep for days and my enthusiasm for what was likely to be another long tough slog was nonexistent. It also would have involved cancelling last minute on a friend, which is a dick move.

What did I do? I talked myself into showing up. Don't tell Rose, but I've been trying to think more positively about my running. Come race day I don't want doubts creeping in and I know it takes practice to get there, so practice I will. As I was driving to meet Becky I told myself that these runs, the ones I don't want to do, are the ones that I'll remember come race day. When I want to stay in bed, when I'm afraid it might get hard, when I don't feel strong enough, that is when showing up matters the most. The run didn't end up being stellar, I was struggling the last few miles, but it was a beautiful day and I got it done. 

 my "wtf its hot already" face

my "wtf its hot already" face

I rounded out the week with work travel to Oregon, and I'm pretty proud of myself for getting in 7 miles in Portland after a 3 am wake up call and 6 hours on a plane. It made for a really long day, and I was dead asleep by 9 pm, but it got done. I'm trying hard not to make excuses with my training, to plan and be prepared for things like travel. I think I've only missed one run this entire training cycle and it was when my flight got cancelled and I spent 9 hours in the Philly airport. As I've said before, I want to get to race day and know I did everything I could to be ready.

Week 13 summary: 
Miles scheduled: 31
Miles ran: 31
Time on my feet: 6:05:21

Week 14 has me going way outside my comfort zone for my long run, and jumping in to pace a runner during their attempt at a 100 mile race. Spoiler alert: all aboard the pain train. Stay tuned!