Goal – Spring marathon – weeks 13-16

My January was divided in two by a skiing trip, so my workout plans had to be adjusted. Additionally, the pollution levels in Warsaw were very high and several workouts were lost due to this reason. Generally January was a good month. The skiing trip was marvelous. My daughter has learned how to ski and she loved it, and so I am the happiest dad because she is clearly going in my steps with my favorites sports. The running workouts were good, taking into consideration the weather conditions, but the overall mileage was shorter than I planned. Altogether during those four weeks I run 133km – a rather poor result, but with addition of a week of skiing and few hours of stationary biking it is acceptable so far as I will rise this number in the following weeks.

As usual I will show you how my workouts looked like:

Monday, 2.01.2017

Plan: Core stability

I came back to work after holiday break on that day and it made me quite tired and unwilling to do anything so I just did my basic routine consisting of planks and called it a day…

Tuesday, 3.01.2017

Plan: Easy run

This day it was snowing and it was very slippery. So far that were the worst running conditions this winter. I was tired and discouraged by the weather so I was just shuffling through the snow. As the conditions were becoming worse and worse I decided to shorten the route and I came back home after 10km.

Execution: 9,58km, 0:56:54, av. pace: 5:56/km, av.hr: 139 (70%hrmax)

Wednesday, 4.01.2017

Plan: Easy run + running strength

The first part of this day’s workout was a struggle. The weather conditions were not much better than the day before, so I was just trying to survive the distance, and then I moved to my running strength routine of uphill runs. The part of the pavement that I picked up for uphill runs is always well-managed, so I had no problems with snow and ice there. The first runs felt surprisingly good after running in snow earlier, so my motivation got even better for the rest of the workout.


E: 8km, av.pace: 6:08/km, av.hr: 137 (68,5%hrmax)

Running Strength: 7×150m fast uphill runs (av.pace:3:45/km) with recovery jogs on the same distance

Thursday, 5.01.2017

Plan: No running – I moved the workout to Friday morning

Friday, 6.01.2017

Plan: Easy run

This day is a national holiday in Poland, so I decided to do the running in the morning in daylight. The run was going quite well as the pavements were in much better shape than earlier on that week. I felt a bit sore after previous workout, but in general I felt well.

Execution: 12,92km, 1:09:05, av. pace: 5:21/km, av. hr: 144 (72%hrmax)

Saturday, 7.01.2017

Plan: tempo run on an Parkrun race

This day I got up late, so I grabbed a sandwich and a coffee and after half an hour I went out for a warmup. The weather was nice, it was sunny, but very cold – 13 degrees below zero. I didn’t recall running that fast in such cold weather, so I was a bit nervous about my breathing, but it turned out that it felt ok. I didn’t have any problems with breathing, although I was trying not to grasp the air too rapidly and deeply. The first kilometer was the fastest, and then I slowed down a bit and kept this pace till the end of the race.


E: 1,83km, 10:01, av.pace: 5:29/km, av.hr: 140 (70%hrmax)

T: 5km, 21:08, av.pace: 4:14/km, av.hr: 169 (84%hrmax)

E: 1,70km, 9:04, av.pace: 5:21/km, av.hr: 148 (74%hrmax)

Sunday – Tuesday, 8-10.01.2017

On those days, the pollution levels of air in Warsaw were exceeding the acceptable levels by 200 – 300% so I decided to miss my training and stayed home. To have some exercise I was just riding on my stationary bike. I kept a moderate resistance and a high cadence throughout the rides.

Wednesday, 11.01.2017

Plan: Easy run

The pollution levels went down to reasonable numbers so I decided to go out. I did my regular route and it felt pretty good.

Execution: 12,12km, 1:07:55, av.pace: 5:36/km, av.hr: 144 (72%hrmax)

Thursday, 12.01.2017

Smog again.  I stayed home and started packing for my trip to Austria.

Friday-Saturday, 13-14.01.2017

On Friday, I was packing my bags and preparing everything for my trip to the mountains. We moved out just before eleven p.m. on Friday and we arrived in Zell am Ziller just before 3 p.m. on Saturday. It was a very difficult trip due to awful weather conditions on the road – it was snowing all the time and I was dead tired after driving over 1200 km.

Sunday-Friday, 15-20.01.2017

Plan: Skiing till the afternoon and then hitting sauna in the evening 😉

I will not elaborate about skiing itself as this is a running blog, I just have to mention, that with my wife we managed to teach our four rear old daughter how to ski, and she did a great job. Children are great in that matter: always ready to try new things, no fear and no worries – just pure fun :)))

These pics. Tell everything…

Saturday, 21.01.2017

No workout – I was on my way from Zell am Ziller to Warsaw – 1220 km this way took me “only” thirteen hours and it was way less difficult than the week before. I got back home before eleven p.m., hit the shower and went to bed… my bed – finally 🙂

Sunday, 22.01.2017

Plan: Easy run

I came back from Austria on Saturday night, so on Sunday I was still a bit tired, but my legs had ten days off from running and I was ready to do some running. I decided not to start from the long run, but to reduce this day workout to a normal easy run in order to come back to training the easy way. Generally I felt good, the running conditions were not so perfect though due to the temperature being around freezing point and some snow, but it was nothing unusual for that time of a year. The run went well, although I admit that I felt some stress in my legs. I suppose that event ten days without running make a difference in muscle adaptation to running.

Execution: 12,94km, 1:12:01, av.pace: 5:34, av.hr: 142 (71%hrmax)

Monday, 23.01.2017

Plan: core stability

I felt a big sore after my Sunday run and I was short on time on that day, but I managed to squeeze a few minutes to proceed with my core routine. I did three series of planks (front side and back) and few general exercises (pushups, pullups, squats and crunches).

Tuesday, 24.01.2017

Plan: Easy run

I didn’t sleep too well for the last two days and it had big influence on my performance on that day. I was tired and out of energy. My run was heavy and with poor dynamics. I did my 13km route, but all I could think of during the run was getting back home.

Execution: 12,87km, 1:15:01, av.pace: 5:50/km, av.hr: 145 (72%hrmax)

Wednesday, 25.01.2017

Plan: VO2max Intervals

On Wednesday I was hoping to do a good interval session, but I clearly misjudged the weather conditions and this totally destroyed my workout. I thought that everything would be covered with ice and snow, so I put on my shoes with screws and went out running. It turned out that a major part of my route was clear of ice and snow. What was worst, the clear parts were separated by iced parts but none of them were long enough to do my intervals. I chose to run on frozen grass along my route and on sides of my route not cleared from ice. This however was not a good surface for a fast run. I did my warmup easy run, then I did three 1km intervals on four minutes breaks, that were far from my desired pace and I gave up the workout.

Execution: 8,12km, 0:43:46, av.pace: 5,23/km, av.hr: 150 (75%hrmax)

Intervals: 3x1km with 4’ recoveries in slow jog (pace: 4:35/km, 4:50/km and 5:14/km)

Thursday, 26.01.2017

Plan: Easy run

On Thursday I took my regular winter shoes and went for a normal easy run. I felt good as the previous workout was short and not very intensive. The conditions were still difficult, but this time the pace was not an important factor so I just tried to keep my effort on a normal easy level.

Execution: 12,89km, 1:15:33, av.pace: 5:52/km, av.hr: 146 (73%hrmax)

Friday, 27.01.2017

Rest day

Saturday, 28.01.2017

Plan: Tempo Intervals

Initially I planned to join a Parkrun Race and have a nice 21’ tempo run, but the pollution was high in the morning, so I thought that it was better to wait couple of hours for a clearer air. The weather was sunny, cold and with no wind. I went out running and I was lucky to find a part of a bicycle road that was not covered with Ice just long enough to have 1km intervals on it. I did four 1km tempo intervals with 1’ recovery jogs  and to my surprise they went really good. I was moving fast with high cadence and a feeling of reserves in my legs for even faster running. After my Wednesday intervals I was a bit worried about this workout but fortunately it turned out that it was not my poor shape but the road conditions made the difference.

Execution: 11km, 0:56:09, av.pace: 5:06/km

Warmup and cooldown: 5,5km, 0:29:18, av.pace: 5:19/km

1km Tempo intervals – av. pace: 4:19/km, 4:05/km, 4:12/km and 4:12/km

Sunday, 29.01.2017

Plan: Long run

This was only the second long run in January, so I was a bit worried about the outcome of the run, I started slowly and kept it rather easy. The first part of the run felt easy, but during the second part of the run my legs started slowing down. I was getting mild cramps and felt tired and unwilling to continue. Perhaps my sugar level has dropped down or I was just not prepared for a long run. All in all the run was ok., the average pace was slow, but at a reasonable level. I just need to be more regular with my long runs in the following months.

Execution: 21,20km, 2:00:51, av.pace: 5:42/km, av.hr: 146 (73%hrmax)

That’s it. As I previously said, everything is going pretty well. The only thing that worries me is my weight that is not dropping and that has stabilized around 86kg. I should be below 85kg by now to be able to easily loose some two more kilograms, but I still hope I can get to my desired starting weight until the end of April.


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