Kaiser Half Training: Week Four

AKA…the Thanksgiving edition 🙂

Crazy November continued with the arrival of my lovely Brother in Law, taking our guest tally to four….and a trip up to Tahoe for Thanksgiving.


We got here late on Wednesday night. Thursday (Thanksgiving) was a little challenging, with some of us struggling with altitude, others with germs and others with too much Wii time (eh, Dude?). Sometimes, we expect big events like Thanksgiving and Christmas to naturally be magical and heartwarming, but frankly, being thankful is most important on the difficult days. This year, I was grateful for a LOT of things. My boys, my family, my friends, my health, my safety…and also for running and for you lovely people who read this blog and have become friends, either in real life or still online.

Amidst all the stuff, I managed to pack some decent running in this week.


Monday: Long Run

14 MILES!! 14 MILES!!! I think this was my longest run since I ran the London Marathon 10 years ago. I know 14 miles isn’t that long for all you marathon runners but for me, with my 13.1 race limit, it was a LONG way! It actually turned out to be pretty straight forward. The weather was gorgeous (vest/tank top and shorts), the route was dead flat and I worked through two Trail Runner Nation podcasts and started the Serial Podcasts. Oh Serial…how hooked I am on you! I risked my new Hokas for this run and they did me proud. My legs struggled a little between 7 – 10 miles but the final four miles were pretty good and I finished pretty strong. 14 miles at 10.25 pace. Happy me.

Tuesday: Rest

My legs and knees ached a LOT today. I can’t decide if I went somewhat overboard on running 14 miles in new shoes – were the aching limbs due to using different muscles (Hokas have a slightly lower heel/toe drop than my usual shoes) or due to the flu-like symptoms that sent me to bed in the afternoon to sleep for three hours?

Wednesday: Fast Finish Run

I felt much better today, so once we were all packed up and ready for Tahoe and were just waiting for the Dude to finish school, I slipped out for six miles. Four at easy pace (and in just a sports bra, it was so warm) and the final two at tempo. They turned out to be 8:25 and 8.36 which, given how I felt yesterday, I was happy with. 6 miles at 9.26 pace.

Thursday: Easy Run

In the absence of a Turkey Trot in Tahoe, I ran three very lackluster miles  along the North Shore. The altitude got to me, my legs felt like lead and this ‘easy’ run was probably much more of a moderate effort. My heart wasn’t really in this run, got to be honest. But sometimes you just do what needs to be done. 3 miles at 10.20 pace.

The view from today's trotting
The view from today’s trotting

Friday: Rest

Spent the day driving round the lake with everyone.

Saturday: Hill ‘Repeats’

We woke up to snow! And with the snow came bear prints round the cabin.

tahoe bear

So I changed my planned hill repeats further up the road, which was quite isolated and forested, and ran a 0.4 mile loop around the cabins. It had a nice little kicker of a hill at the end of each loop. Add in the altitude and I think it worked out. 4 miles at 11.34 pace.

Me Snow Winter Tahoe
Please note the GIANT bear prints my brother in law faked in the snow to freak out the boys


Later that day, I had half an hour of ice-skating. Does that count as cross training?

skating tahoe dude husband me
Super-proud of our whizzy little skater-boy!

Sunday: Rest

I’d planned 6 recovery miles but due to travelling back from Tahoe in the afternoon, it never happened.


Given the challenges of the week (busyness, guests, Thanksgiving, altitude) I’m fairly happy with how I ran this week! I regret the missed run on Sunday which meant that once again I didn’t get over 30 miles. But this is a very busy period and I’m not going to beat myself up, even if, come February, I miss a PR. Sometimes, that’s just life.

Having said that, I finished November with 120 miles. I ran 88 in October and 109 in September so, whilst I would have liked a few more miles, I have definitely increased volume substantially month on month. .

The Husband and I signed up for a race this week. We’re running the Red Rock Canyon Half Marathon, just outside Las Vegas, in March to celebrate my lovely friend Nicola’s Big Important Birthday! Now to persuade our friends to look after the Dude for TWO nights! Vegas, baby!

This coming week should be a little quieter – our visitors go home on Thursday and life should get a little more back to normal. I’m off to make the most of our remaining time with them.

12 Comments Add yours

  1. Nic J says:

    That weather is even more mad than here! Vests and shorts for a run one day, and paw prints in the snow the next?!
    And very excited about Red Rock Canyon! BRING. IT. ON!!!!! Thanks in advance to the babysitter! xx (whoever you are!)

    1. Cathryn says:

      We haven’t asked them yet….:) Hope they didn’t read this.

  2. Grace says:

    Sounds like a great week! The holidays are always a rough time to start training for anything. ‘Next year’ always sounds farther away to me than it actually is. But family time? Always worth it. (Also – eek, bears.)

    1. Cathryn says:

      Yeah, bears!! We’re all kind of relieved and kind of disappointed that we didn’t actually see him!!

  3. Paulette says:

    I’m so happy you had a strong 14 miler! And that’s far, no matter what anyone says!

    1. Cathryn says:

      Thank you!! It felt like a long way.

  4. Jen says:

    So impressed with your mileage this month with the holidays, visitors, and moving house! You deserve rock star status!!

  5. I would say your training is going well. Love the huge bear paws and I would stay close to home if the real bear paws showed up anywhere near my running path!

    1. Cathryn says:

      Yeah, it was fun but also pretty intimidating.

  6. jess says:

    I just found your blog , loving it so far! Just so you know, we are from the rocky mountains, and those are not bear prints. Looks like dog or a perhaps coyote? Check out these bear prints to compare http://www.seeyosemite.com/identifying-animal-tracks.html

    1. Cathryn says:

      Hi, thanks for both reading and leaving a comment, I’m so glad you’re enjoying the blog. You’re totally right about the paw print…I realized fairly soon after that it was much too small, I think I was just desperate to see bear prints!!

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