Journey 2017 – First Half

Since the beginning of this year, I have been consistently posting updates on my month-wise journey in the First Half of 2017.

To summarize,

I ran 68 times in the last 181 days, covering a distance of 652.35 kilometers in 59 hours 45 minutes, burning 46332 calories at an average pace of 05:30 m/km.

Now let’s fast forward and re-visit them “One month at a Time”.

First Half - 2017

Just click on the Month below to go back in time. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Month Runs Duration Distance
January 8 8:31 hours 94.47 kms
February 9 6:11 hours 68.22 kms
March 14 11:28 hours 126.1 kms
April 9 8:19 hours 92.06 kms
May 12 12:08 hours 131.1 kms
June Β 16 13:08 hours 140.4 kms
Total 68 59:45 hours 652.35 kms

Keep Running with Raah !!

June 2017 – One Month at a Time

16 runs |13:08 hours | 140.4 kilometers

June (for me) is one of the best time of the year, my love for rains and for the enjoyment of running in the rains. It’s time to get all soaked up.

Last year I ran just once in the month of June, and in contrast to that I am a lot happier this year to have completed 140+ kms in a single month. I nailed it this time around πŸ˜‰

Goodbye heat, Hello rains! πŸ˜€

The best thing about running in the rains is that, it is gloomy throughout the day and the weather is beautiful (picturesque). I can oversleep and go for a run at anytime during the day and I don’t have to worry about the heat or the overhead sun. I become a little kid running around splashing through the puddles. πŸ˜‚

Medium Long Run on mornings like these ❀

Running in the rains is really, really fun. I become that “crazy runner” who’s out there in the rain (mostly all alone), getting those kilometers done no matter what.

I can’t believe that I successfully completed the first 16 weeks (phase 1) of my annual training cycle for 2017. During these 16 weeks “thrice a week” plan, I skipped 7 out of 48 planned sessions and covered a distance of 421 kms.

All my runs in these past months were at General Aerobic and Lactate Threshold pace during the weekdays and easy paced Recovery runs over the weekends.

Completion Rate of 85% | 41/48 runs | 421/504 kms

After the first week of June, I moved to a 14 weeks “four times a week” plan (i.e. phase 2 of my annual training cycle), which will go on until mid-September.

With this phase, I introduced Medium Long Runs (MLRs between 18K – 24K) into my weekly schedule. So my week would now look something like this,

  • General Aerobic run (weekday),
  • Lactate Threshold run (weekday),
  • Recovery run (Friday or Saturday),
  • Medium Long run (weekend).

First Attempt | Second Attempt

Highlight of this month was the Strava Mile promotional event, wherein I attempted a couple of Miles in 06:26 and 06:17 minutes respectively.

May, 2017 – One Month at a Time

12 runs | 12:08 hours | 131.1 kilometers

One of the Hottest month of the year, and with that it was not going to be easy to log 30-35 kms each week (not to forget incremental by 1 km every week). On top of that there were a couple of family visits and a leisure trip over the weekend.

However, I did well, except the last couple of weeks in May. I had to skip all 3 sessions in the last week and catch up with the sessions that I had missed.

My GAs and LTs this month almost peaked 12-14 kms, and Recovery runs up to 10 kms per session. Although it meant running just thrice a week, but, logging 34+ kms each week required a lot more discipline than the previous months.

General Aerobic run

In fact in May I was able to log most kilometers in a single month in 2017. With 12 runs and 131.1 kms, I was already going strong.

Yes, it is okay to skip sessions. Just make sure you feel good about it.

One of the most refreshing runs this month was in a pollution free, dense tree cover of Matheran. Despite all the bugs and tripping hazards, the tranquility of the deep woods in Matheran is somthing to cherish.

Matheran Trail Run

April, 2017 – One Month at a Time

9 runs | 8:19 hours | 92.06 kilometers

In the month of April, I chose to skip 3 planned sessions in the first-two weeks as I was preparing for Decathlon Anniversary Run, 10K (D’War).

My previous best 10K was in 48:31 minutes (in 2015) and this time around I was looking forward to set a new Personal Record (PR) and was hoping to cross the finish line in < 48 minutes at a goal pace of ~ 04:48 mins/km.

On 9th April, 2017 I beat my 10K PR at D’War 2017 in 46:41 minutes at a pace of 04:41 mins/km and ranked 14th out of 245 runners. It was an exciting route, a very good race and above all, nothing beats seeing sunrise while you were on your way to cross the finish line.

Every time I go out and race, I end up running faster than I’ve ever done before πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

D'war 10K
D’war 2017: 10K in 46:41

The rest of the month I sincerely followed my “thrice a week” (phase 1) schedule of General Aerobic (GAs), Lactate Threshold (LTs) and Recovery runs.

One of the highlights this month apart from breaking my PR in 10K was that my last run for the month ended at the Gateway of India, Mumbai followed by a 1000m of pool swimming at a nearby club.

Happiness is when your run ends at the Gateway of India πŸ˜€

The Gateway of India, Mumbai

March, 2017 – One Month at a Time

14 runs | 11:28 hours | 126.1 kilometers

The month of March went exactly as planned. Not only did I follow my training plan sincerely, I almost ended up doubling the no. of kms run from 68.22 kms in February to 126.1 in March.

Mostly, my runs were at my General Aerobic (GA) pace of 06:15 – 05:45 mins/km (some of them slightly quicker than that – but I prefer training at a slower pace). Occasionally my GAs formed a Negative Split (i.e. running first half slower than the last half) and I think it is one of the best way to end any race stronger

Negative Splits

At times, I mixed the GA runs with Speed runs; starting with a warm-up, followed by 10 x 100m interval of Speed run (as fast as I can) and ended the session with a Cool Down.

I also ran a couple of runs at my Lactate Threshold (LT) pace of 05:15 – 05:00 mins/km. Again, warming up at the start of each run followed by some kms at LT pace and ending with a much needed Cool Down.

Lactate Threshold

Weekends were mostly recovery runs at an easy relaxed pace.

February, 2017 – One Month at a Time

9 runs | 6:11 hours | 68.22 kilometers

Last year, I started with my routine running in the month of April and SCMM, 2017 training plan in mid-September. It did work well for me to some extent, but then it was also one of the main reason why I fell short of running 1200 kms in 2016. I clocked 10 runs in 5 months covering only 78 kms (2 runs in Feb, 1 run in March, 4 runs in May, 1 run in June and 2 runs in August) and then I covered up 800 kms in the remaining 7 months (too much to catch up with). I was nor sincere – nor regular with my running.

In contrast, I chose to train through out the year in 2017. My annual running cycle began this year in February and would end with SCMM in January, 2018.

I began with a “thrice a week plan” (phase 1) starting with 24 kms in the first week, with an increment of 1 km each week for the next 16 weeks. It covers mostly Short, Interval and Recovery runs.

Interval Run

For Interval runs, every km I run, I split it into equal half, starting with a Recovery run at a very slow pace followed by a speedy run, wherein, I try to push myself as hard as I can.

Interval runs are so much fun and are one of the best ways to reinvigorate yourself.

January, 2017 – One Month at a Time

8 runs | 8:31 hours | 94.47 kilometers

My year began with the last mesocycle of my annual training for Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon, 2017 (SCMM). By then, I had tapered my running distance from a regular 50-60 kms per week by more than half to 10-20 kms per week. In the last week I ran a couple of “feel good” runs of 30 and 20 minutes each before the BIG DAY on Sunday, 15th January 2017.

Having run 870.1 kms in 2016 and completing only 48 out of 75 training sessions i.e. 64% of my SCMM training plan, I was prepared of falling short of my goal pace and of not crossing the finish line in < 3 hours 30 minutes. I quickly reset my goal pace so as to finish my first marathon strong in < 4 hours atleast. Now, when Plan A seems impossible, you better have a Plan B ready.

On Race day, starting strong was good and finishing stronger was epic. The journey in itself was so extraordinaire that in the process I discovered strengths I never knew I had. In the end I was proud and pleasantly surprised to complete my first ever Marathon in less than 4 hours.

Forty Two point Two (42.2) kilometers in 3 hours 53 minutes and 6 seconds.

First Marathon in 03:53:06

I ended the month on a high with mostly rest days and a couple of recovery runs.