Jan 23

The Rundown – High Intensity

When your training week comes with a warning from your coach, you should probably pay attention. When I looked at my week ahead on Training Peaks, I found this note of caution: “This looks like an easy week, but it’s not. It has fewer workouts, but the intensity is high so take your easy days, easy.” Two years ago I would have shrugged that off and gone hard no matter what. Now? I know better. Let’s see how it turned out…





There were definitely some super intense runs, including this incline with speed work I did on the treadmill:

Warm up: 10 minutes easy

Main Set:

6 x

2x[30 seconds at 2%, then 30 seconds rest]

2x[30 seconds at 4%, then 30 seconds rest]

2x[30 seconds at 0%, then 30 seconds rest]

I was able to maintain a 6:30 pace but just barely, by the fourth set. I was told to just jump off the tread during the 30 seconds of rest otherwise it would be ridiculous. Let me tell you, it was ridiculous anyway.

This was taken before I started. Obviously.

Other runs included:

Friday: long aerobic run | 8 miles | 8:15 pace

Sunday: threshold intervals | 2 x 15 minutes at 6:40 pace/4 min recovery in between | 7 miles

Total = 20


I had some great (high intensity!) rides on the trainer and, as I posted to Instagram, I absolutely did not want to do the one on MLK. I had just driven home after a weekend of snowboarding, my kids were stir crazy from being in the house for 15 minutes, I was tired, I had piles of laundry and, my husband was working in the basement so I had to lug my bike and trainer to the first floor. But I sucked it up and planted my ass on the bike and rode!

However, this was not even close to the hardest workout I did for the week. This was:

6 x 6 min hard Z3 (high heart rate!)/3 min Z2/5 min recovery

This lasted1 hour and 20 minutes and I was in the pain cave, dripping sweat for the majority of that time. My watch told me I needed 27 hours of recovery time, but I felt invincible! I also started listening to yet another mental training book* on Audible. *see reading below

Then Sunday, after my intense run, I did some isolated leg training moves which I used to think were worthless but actually improve pedaling efficiency and make the pain cave a tad less painful.

Total mileage on the bike = 42


Mercy was shown in my pool workouts but I also saw how the intensity of the week reflected in my 25 meter times.

First I had a big day of strength training and 2500 meters in the pool. For whatever reason, I get super intimidated when I have to do 3 x 500s. 500 meters is 20 laps or 1 mile. I do this in addition to warm-ups and cool downs and I have only 1 minute of recovery in between. It’s a total mind-f**k but I was super consistent this week, doing each 500 within 3 seconds of each.

Needless to say, by the end of the week and after my long run, I had sets of 25 meters. You may recall I broke 19 seconds just two weeks ago. Last Friday? I had to struggle to get 21 seconds. #Intense

Total meters = 3400


I randomly was given a PR Bar, which I had never heard of, and it was delicious! The best part is that it has 15 grams of protein and some great ingredients. Other good news? They are gluten free and don’t taste like cardboard. Bonus!

I like to switch up my bars a lot. Although VEGA peanut butter/chocolate remains a staple for me, I do get sick of them every once and a while. Options are good…



This article on Zelle/Runner’s World from Kelly Coffey (originally for Men’s Health) about the first minute of your day. It’s powerful and probably pretty useful if you have a teenager (or someone who just acts like one) in your house. I don’t like that they titled it as a “motivational trick” but, that’s just me:

This Motivational Trick Is Incredibly Powerful | Kelly Coffey

The author was talking to 17 year-old girls about the importance of taking care of your body in college. You can imagine how well that was received, and was reflected in the following question from what was no doubt a captivated audience member – –  “Since we’re all going to die, what’s the point of being well?”

Coffey’s answer made most of them cry. As they should.


Speaking of Zelle, they have announced via email that the weekly newsletter will now be called the RW Rundown. Hmmm. Wherever did they come up with that name? Next they will be telling you to train for life! Pffffff.


I should probably title this “listening” since I’m doing so much of that lately. Since I’m meditating like a boss (and loving it) this book was an obvious choice as it marries mindfulness and intense training in the best way possible:

The Mindful Athlete by George Mumford

Since Michael Jordan credits the author with “transforming his on court leadership of the Bulls,” I felt it was worth a listen. I was right, natch.

THIS is how athletes are made!

And, although I have been MIA at the last few book clubs, I’m hopeful to make it to the next one to talk about Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah. It’s a tad cheeseball in some parts, but overall it’s a very interesting story about the lives of best friends from elementary school though…um, I’m not sure since I’m still reading.


This is my son

in a bar

with a camo hat on backwards

holding a purple stuffed animal

ah 7…

How was your week?

What have you done lately that was intense?


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  1. oooh well since I did me a half marathon yesterday I need the mindful ATHLETE right?
    Prior to that I just needed the mindful mama (<—shall I write that one?! :-)) but theres a tiny tiny really good chance Ive been bitten by the race bug.
    CARLA recently posted…Family boot camp ISNT about the booty.My Profile

    1. YES to both. Congrats on the half!!! Loved the sweaty, smiling finish pic!!! xoxo #youhavebeenbitten

  2. Sounds like training wise, it was a good week for you. I’m glad it went well. Ha, if my coach said that to me I would be nervous too. Nice job tackling it though. My treadmill workout last week was intense but other than, I ha a pretty easy week….I was supposed to taper for a race that was canceled due to tornadoes.
    Hollie recently posted…Training: Taper and Another Canceled RaceMy Profile

    1. Yes! I commented on your blog how we had similar intense runs this week. Nicely done!

  3. I’ve determined that your son (and Suzy’s son Callum) is my spirit animal.
    Maybe your trainer gave you all the workouts that I am NOT allowed to do?
    Susie @ Suzlyfe recently posted…My “Couch Rest” Weekend (Spoiler Alert)My Profile

    1. I would have to agree with both of these statements.

  4. Those words always mean – you are about to get your ass kicked!! I need to listen to the mindfulness podcast. My mind has been all over the place. One day I’m confident. The next I’m freaking out that I’ll never be able to run xxx pace for 26.2 miles because I’m an injury prone runner who always screws things up. Ugh!!!
    Angela @ Happy Fit Mama recently posted…Last Week’s WorkoutsMy Profile

    1. Yep, that’s the exact translation!
      Please do yourself a favor and listen to some mindful podcasts or books. You can’t think about anything else and it WORKS!

      PS – no one ever thinks they can hold their goal pace for 26.2 miles until they do 🙂

  5. I”m exhausted just reading about your workouts!

    Right now? Life is intense. That is all.
    Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home recently posted…WinterludeMy Profile

    1. LOL and I know what you mean!! I need Hawaii so badly right now…

  6. It may be RW Rundown for now…. but once you take over as the editor for it, it will be Allie’s Rundown, so it’s all good….
    Paria@momontherunsanity.com recently posted…WhisperMy Profile

    1. LOL – I’m sure that’s where it’s headed 🙂

  7. OMG Zelle is totally watching your blog!! They should totally have asked you for permission! 🙂 I love that mindful athlete picture. I need to do that. Daily. The PR bar looks good, are there other flavors? Cuz I can’t do peanut butter lol
    Nellie recently posted…Womens March NYC: 40+ Unyielding Original Images From The Inspiring DayMy Profile

    1. Right?? And I totally want to lay on the floor like that before my races and just Ohmmmmmmmm!!
      PR Bar comes in LOTS of flavors. Check out their site! They are probably super easy to find in Brooklyn.

  8. Ohhh, i’ve got sprints on tap for tomorrow, I think I need to try that treadmill workout you did! Sounds awesome!! And those shoulders……

    1. Very funny about the shoulders and you should definitely try the workout. It keeps your mind busy and gives you great workout!

  9. Intense for sure!! But you nailed it, as always.

    I’ve never heard of those pr bars either… anytime a gf protein bar doesn’t taste like cardboard is winning!
    Laura recently posted…8 weeks until NYC Half workouts + Meal PlanningMy Profile

    1. Thanks Laura!
      And yes, whenever I saw “gluten free” I used to recoil but, a lot them have come a long way and these are the best yet.

  10. I adore that gif of the swimming pug! Charlie refuses to swim whenever we take him to a lake – maybe he needs a cute pair of pug googles like that!
    Way to CRUSH that hard week! The treadmill hill workout and those threshold intervals both sound tough but so fun. Those 500 m swims just sound tough!
    Laura @ This Runner’s Recipes recently posted…Lake Sammamish Half Training 2017 Week 3My Profile

    1. Haha – I knew you would! I think the Pug goggles would do the trick!
      Thanks Laura.

  11. I love your kid! You got me hooked on the Vega bars and now my two older boys love them too. I love watching them eat those things instead of Doritos and cigarettes. HA ha ha ha ha. Sigh…
    Suzy recently posted…Week in ReviewMy Profile

    1. That makes me so happy and a total win with the kids in my book!!

  12. Your son is my spirit animal. I aspire for this level of coolness. Yes Houston I might have a problem.
    Your intensity is totally awesome!! My focus and intensity is all going into my power cycling classes. My 90 minute class on Saturday was super fun. I chose a very hilly Tour de France profile and did a simulation with music. I love doing ride simulations. And long painful climbs. Yeah baby.
    Danielle recently posted…WIR sleep less play moreMy Profile

    1. Cycling is such a great high-intensity workout. I miss teaching…but not enough to go back to it 🙂

  13. Jesus. You make me feel so lazy. I did do 100 (weighted) squats 5 days ago and I’m still sore from that. So… that counts, yeah?
    Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table recently posted…THIS IS A BIG DEAL #whyimarchMy Profile

    1. Well you make me feel like I should just eat cereal for every meal, since I’m such a failure in the kitchen, so we’re even 🙂 And yes, that totally counts!

  14. Awesome week of workouts!!!!!
    Jesica @rUnladylike recently posted…Musings from My First Marathon {Special Guest Post}My Profile

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