The Breaking B.Q. Project: A Day in the Training Life with Lauren B.
Editor’s Note: This year, Minneapolis Running will be following the journey of five runners striving for a 2018 or 2019 B.Q. We’ll cover their training, track their progress, and cheer them into the finish line with the hopes of lining up in Hopkinton next spring. We call it the “Breaking B.Q. Project.”
We know that runners have different strategies for reaching their goals and aim to share the different training methods used by our Breaking B.Q. Project participants. In this article, Lauren B. describes a typical day of marathon training with a weekday track workout.
A Typical Weekday of Training for Lauren B.
Track Workout Day
4:45 a.m.: The Dreaded Alarm
Monday through Saturday my alarm typically starts going off at 4:45 a.m. Because I’ve become quite a snoozer, I have to start things off earlier than I actually need to be up. Today, I managed to only hit it once which is a HUGE win. Once I roll out of bed I stumble to the bathroom to do a quick assessment of whether my hair is fine to go in a bun or needs to be washed (#lazypeopleproblems) and have another win for the day – bun day it is! I hurry and shower (there is a lot of rushing this morning), make my coffee with an excessive amount of vanilla creamer to drink while I finish getting ready, and feed/medicate/let Bentley, our Bernese Mountain Dog, outside.
Related: Why Runners Need More Sleep
Every morning I make sure to take the time to stretch things out by foam rolling, doing a variety of PT exercises, and a few of my favorite yoga poses: dog down, upward dog, cobbler, reclining pigeon, and forward fold with ankles crossed to name a few. Based on what else I have going on some days are a bit lighter. For example, today I’m going to PT anyway so I cut out some the exercises they’ve prescribed.
At this point in the training cycle, I’m pretty particular about what I eat so I make my breakfast, lunch, and snacks at home. I generally try to eat fruit, yogurt/cottage cheese, and an egg for breakfast with a salad for lunch. To avoid eating the same thing over and over I switch up at least one of the “main” fruits each week and keep a couple of options for salad toppings on hand at all times.
Today I’ve got:
- 2 Kiwis
- 1 hard-boiled egg
- 1 Yoplait Light Banana Cream yogurt
- Chicken, blue cheese, walnut salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Pita chips and hummus
In order to make it to my PT appointment on time, I’m out the door by 6:30 a.m.
7:00 a.m.: PT Appointment
By 7 a.m. I’m at my PT appointment at Orthology. I’ve been seeing them every week or so since the beginning of June because of the issues I’ve been having with a tendon in my lower leg and now I’m lucky enough to also have excessive tightness in the gastroc and soleus on the same side. (Marathon training…am I right?) Despite my issues, I’m loving working with Orthology (no they don’t know I’m plugging them here…is that bad?) for a number of reasons. The PT and PTA I work with are amazing people – super kind, friendly, and helpful. Their goal is to keep me running and help me achieve my goals.
Related: Why You Need a Physical Therapist
8:30 – 4:00 p.m.: Work, Work, Work…
I make it to my desk by 8:30 a.m. with enough time to scan through any e-mails that came in after I left yesterday and eat my fruit. In general, my work day is really chaotic because I spend the majority of my time in meetings and today isn’t any different – they start at 9 a.m. and are back to back until 2:30 p.m. I get 30 minutes to catch-up on more emails and check in with my team before my last meeting starts at 3 p.m.. I don’t really mind but a girl’s gotta eat! I’m that person who carries their lunch box around all day and is constantly eating something. I usually get out my lunch at 11/11:30 a.m. (yes – in a meeting) and then have a snack around 1:30/2 p.m. (also in a meeting). My rule of thumb is not to eat anything or have an afternoon coffee after 3 p.m. if I need to run after work to avoid any wonky tummy things.
4:15 p.m.: Head Out and Home
Today I headed out a little bit early so I’d be able to finish my workout by a reasonable time. I swing by my house, quickly change, and scoop up my neighbor to go to the track.
4:50 p.m.: Track Time!
The workout on deck today was: 2-mile warm-up, 6×800 @ 6:53, 2 mile cool down. We switched it up a smidge and did a 2.5ish mile warm-up…for some reason I can’t wrap my head around running 2 additional miles after a track workout but 1.5 is fine. Post warm-up and pre-workout I like to do some dynamic stretching and drills: leg swings, high knees, a-skips, b-skips (these make me feel ridiculously uncoordinated), and butt kicks to make sure my legs are ready to go hard. Then we immediately went into our laps on the track.
After each 800 we took a 2-minute standing/walking/jogging recovery break – I kind of do whatever I need at the moment. Twelve laps later we were ready for our cool down and ran it on the outside of the track instead of heading back out to the roads. After we were done with our miles for the day, we spent a good amount of time stretching things out so we wouldn’t be too sore the next day.
7:00 p.m.: Dinner time
Once I’m home from the track I down a glass of FairLife chocolate milk, stick my lower legs in a bucket of ice water for ~15 minutes and follow it up with a hot shower. I hurry and get dressed to run (ok, be driven by my husband) over to Chipotle for our Tuesday night burrito bowl tradition. Nowadays I get a bowl with brown rice, black beans, fajitas, steak, pico, sour cream, and cheese. YUM. We always bring our bowls home and eat while catching up on some shows.
9:00 p.m.: Bedtime!
I’m pretty pooped at this point so it’s not uncommon for me to be found either resting my eyes on the couch or in bed by 9 p.m.