Heart Rate 102 – 1st 4 weeks

Whew, it’s been a while!  It feels like all of 2 days since beginning of October, but time flies when busy life takes over.  I’m not in week 5 of AMR’s Heart Rate 102 plan to get me through this winter. 1276 miles in for this year so far!

Since the Happy Girls race in September, I’ve been battling chest congestion turned cold/sinus infection. 6 weeks!  Moms never have time to be sick right?  It wasn’t until my eldest got a fever and I realized my youngest still had her cough for going on at least 3 weeks, that I decided to take 1/2 sick day and take us all to the doctor. Sinus infections all around plus bonus ear infection for Cecy.  No wonder my pace had taken a hit.  I’m really glad that I decided not to try for that half marathon PR and listen to my body by taking it a bit easier instead. 

We’re finally all off meds and feeling a little bit better.  My easy effort pace has gotten slightly better, though still recovering a bit.  By taking it easy of course I didn’t mean that I wasn’t running 🙂  I’m focusing on the 5k and building some strength with hills by following the Heart Rate 102 plan now instead.  I really am loving heart rate training – especially now since I’ve seen how it naturally adjusts to what your body is capable of when you are not 100%.

The AMR Heart Rate 102 plan is shorter mileage from when I was training for my half, but still gets up to about an hour on 3 of the weekday runs.  No slow as a snail recovery pace runs in this plan, just easy effort (heart rate <=140) with some mix of hills and 10k pace.  I wouldn’t be surprised if the people who live by the overpass near my house where I’ve been running recognize me now.

the hill

It doesn’t look like much but when you are doing 20-30 minutes of hill intervals it’s plenty!  The plan has intervals such as high knees and hill bounding.  The SSSCs (super short strength circuits) that are 3x a week are challenging and I think are targeted to help you build the strength you need for those hills.  Push ups and burpees are starting to feel just a little bit easier now 🙂


A somewhat “hillier” location for last weekend’s long run… The first three weeks had just easy pace on Saturdays, but last weekend in week 4 started hills on weekends too.  This run was 35 minutes easy, 35 minutes of hills with no heart rate cap, and then 35 easy.  I ran various loops around this park for the hills which were quite steep.  My hamstrings were yelling at me by the end.

One of the other things I wanted to work on was to see what kind of imbalances I have and target some strength specifically to that.  Saucony demoed a really cool app to help people with that, but sadly it is only available for iOS.  Luckily my chiropractor has a sports medicine background so I got an eval from him last week and had my first instruction session with him yesterday on some of the exercises I need to work on.  I have a balance issue and tightness on my right side that cause me to overcompensate by jutting my left hip out a bit.  I’m not sure where I’m going to fit these 15 minutes or so of exercises during the week. Maybe I’ll add them on Tuesdays (no SSSCs on the plan on Tues) and substitute one of the regular SSSCs with doctor’s orders instead.

Four more weeks to go to race day!  Between the hill and strength building on HR 102 and the targeted work from my doctor, I’m hoping to PR at the Jingle Bell run this year.

…..Completely unrelated, but this little girl turned 11 last week and I just cannot believe how time has flown!!



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