Monthly Wrap-Up: July 2017

I wrote this up on Monday, July 31, and figured I should wait until August to actually post it. Rather than using the nifty scheduling feature to automatically post this on Tuesday, August 1, I told myself, “Oh, I’ll just post it Tuesday after work.” On Friday, after receiving a notice that WordPress had been updated, I came here to make sure the site was still functioning, and I saw the draft of this post sitting there. D’oh! Still, posting the wrap-up on the 4th of the following month isn’t as bad as some previous monthly wrap-ups. Also, on the plus side, I took one last look at the post and found a typo that I fixed, so there’s that.

Well, that was an interesting month. I ran in 3 different states – Connecticut for the first time, Oregon for the 4th year in a row, and at home in North Carolina – and I’m fairly certain I’ve never done that before. It was hot when I wasn’t in Portland, but I survived.

July 2017
Total Mileage:
142.52 miles
Average Pace: 11:32/mile
Number of Runs: 22
Last Month (June 2017): 130.11 miles
Last Year (July 2016): 146.64 miles
Races: None

Total Mileage for 2017 (through July 31): 948.36 miles

For the first time since February, I fell short of my mileage from a year ago. Considering I had two different trips out of town cutting into my mileage, the fact that I was only 4 miles short of last year is pretty good. Also, I increased my mileage over last month, so there’s that.

I guess I should check in on my goals, even though two of them have no updates (and won’t have any new updates until at least September).

Goal 1: 1500 miles

Average miles per day is 948.36 miles divided by 212 days, that’s about 4.47 miles per day, times 365 days for the year, comes out to over 1,632 miles for the year. Last month’s projection was 1,625 miles, so I increased it, and it still blows away my goal. At least for the next couple of months, I’m pretty sure the projection will continue to go up.

Goal 2: 6 races, with 2 that are 13.1 or greater

Once again, no races this month, so I’m stuck on 4 races with one that’s 13.1 or greater. I should have a warm-up race in September. It’s either going to be a 10K or a half. If it’s a half, that will make two races (along with Tobacco Road) that are 13.1 or greater. The warm-up race plus New York City will make 6. (And, of course, if I run the 10K, NYC will be my second 13.1 or greater race.)

Goal 3: A PR in 3 different races

No races, and that means no new PRs. (A PR for miserable weather during a training run doesn’t count.) Like I said last month, I’m probably not going to be shooting for a PR in my warm-up race (regardless of the distance), so, New York City Marathon PR or bust, I guess. (Or scramble to find a December race I can PR.)

My non-specific goals are still (with the notable exception of slow easy runs) not going all that well. I suppose I should cut myself a little bit of slack considering how busy July was. But still, not enough non-running exercise, cooking, diet improvement (except for that one week when I almost eliminated Mountain Dew), or blogging about other stuff besides running. Maybe August will be better.

Best Runs:
July 13, 7.01 miles, 10:55/mile pace
July 25, 7.01 miles, 11:13/mile pace

This is my blog, I can pick two different Best Runs if I want to. Funny how in my May Monthly Wrap-Up, I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to find a good run for this section during the summer months.

The first run was my first run in Portland, and it was glorious. I could have picked any of my 3 Portland runs, but I went with this one because it was the longest of the three, and I ran the last mile in 9:16, easily my fastest mile since the Teal Diva 5K. My second Portland run had a faster average pace, but it was shorter, 2 degrees cooler (although we’re talking 57 vs. 55, so not that big of a deal) and I ran the last mile in only 9:32. Yes, only 9:32. Look at me, trying to sound like a fast runner.

Before July even started, I was 99% sure my best run would happen while I was in Portland. I didn’t expect a run like I had on July 25, though. That one was done in my neighborhood, in 73 degrees and 90% humidity, and it was a workout, 1 mile warm-up, 6 miles at a moderate effort. A difficult workout in any weather. I admit that I stopped and ran into my house for water at the 4 mile mark, or exactly halfway through the workout portion, but I didn’t want to run that long at that level of effort in that weather without some water. The degree of difficulty was high on this one, and when I got done, I knew I had nailed it. (Also, in the back of my mind, I remember thinking, “Oh crap, I’m gonna need to have two best runs for July.”)

If I’m doing two Best Runs, I can do two shout outs too, right? (Of course, I can, this is my blog.)

First shout out is to my run on July 1, which was my first ever run in Connecticut, the 7th state I’ve run in. It wasn’t a great run, partially due to the humidity, but once I got off the main road, it was pretty scenic. The second shout out, which I didn’t even think about until I was getting the numbers for my first Portland run, was my run on July 11. It was a Lactate Threshold workout, and I ended up running very well, especially considering the conditions, but I also knew that it was my last run before Portland, and I think that motivated me.

Worst Run: July 22, 13.1 miles, 12:30/mile pace

There’s only one Worst Run. The only good things I can say about this one is that my phone was not harmed during this run, and in spite of everything, I managed to run these 13.1 miles almost 6 minutes faster than my first half marathon.

Once I got back from Portland, I finally felt like I had started marathon training for real. I know August is going to be tougher. I won’t have a break from the heat in Portland this month, and the mileage is going to keep going up. All I can hope is that I get a little bit of a break from the heat (which I actually got to close out the month – 61 (!) degrees on July 31), keep muddling through when the conditions are miserable, and hope that my hard work will pay off on November 5.