Rebuilding Base Mileage

Rebuilding My Mileage Base, Summer in Houston Edition

I think it’s safe to say that I’m recovered from my competition injury – and that I’ve been ridiculously busy, balancing work, family, and athletic pursuits. I have a big goal on the horizon for January 2017: my first marathon. Specifically, the Houston Chevron Marathon, because it’s either go big or go home, right? I have a guaranteed entry qualifying time from a half marathon; now it’s just a matter of rebuilding my mileage base.

And therein lies the problem, because it’s hotter in Houston now, in May, than it would be in August in Massachusetts. I’m a Mediterranean creature, born and raised in the mild climate of Santa Monica, California. I spent 18 years in the humid continental climate of Massachusetts. Now, I’m looking at my second summer in the humid subtropical climate of Houston – all while trying to build a strong enough base to train for a marathon.

Rebuilding Base Mileage

Running in the subtropics.

The good news: if you head over to the WODNation Gear blog and read this article I wrote, where I interviewed my CrossFit coach (who has also coached marathoners), you’ll see why I have a shred of optimism. I don’t have to build up to 50-mile weeks. I can supplement my training with CrossFit. (At this point, I couldn’t imagine not integrating CrossFit into my marathon training.) The other good news: I’ve started going to CrossFit on Saturday mornings, which are typically endurance WODs.

Now, for the not so good news (for me) as I’m rebuilding my mileage base: I’m going to have to become a morning person. Like, a super early morning person. Yesterday, I meant to get up and run a quick 3 miles before CrossFit – I whacked my snooze button instead. I stuck around after class to do speedwork with the guys, but – guess what? It was hot and humid, and we all bailed after one round.

Last week, I clocked 11 miles of actual, pure running, but when I look back at my CrossFit log, there’s more, to the tune of 2,000 meters. (That doesn’t include the usual warm-up jog of anywhere from 220 to 400 meters.) I was at the box six days last week, building strength and aerobic and anaerobic fitness.

But it’s not running. My next step is to get back to the mileage base I used to have, about 12-15 per week, while still CrossFitting and weightlifting (which will be three runs a week). Then, I’ll start working out a marathon training plan that won’t blow out my knees. I’m leaning toward a three day a week plan that will give my body a break from the repetitive stress of running.


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