Prague Marathon Training Recap: Week 1


In case you missed it, I made a pretty YUGE (sorry, gross) announcement on the blog last week. I’m heading to Prague the first weekend in May to run the Prague Marathon! Yes, note that I said marathon. As in 26.2 miles. As in…I haven’t done a marathon since November 2015. I’m beyond excited about this and feeling incredibly optimistic and positive, and I can’t wait to share my training with you! I’m working with my friend Bobbi, who just so happens to also be a running coach and one of my Nepal travel buddies, and she’s put together what I think (and hope and pray) is a doable plan. Let’s get through this one without a total meltdown of my spine, shall we? PS: This recap will be longer than my other ones since I’m talking about some pre-training stuff too.

Pre-training: Sometime in early-mid December, I decided to start really making working out a priority in my life again, despite work being crazy. I vowed to spend one hour a day working out, even on my most crazy work days (I had four projects due in December!). Sometimes it happened and sometimes it didn’t, but I definitely made strides in my running and even got back on my bike on the bike trainer. I also did some barre videos at home. As I shared, I started using Aaptiv to mix up my workouts and ended up really loving it! I even packed workout gear and worked out a bit on our trip to Europe, and I came home feeling strong and ready to get going. I hit my hour a day plan every day once I got home!

A little Barre3 workout in sunny South Florida! Home for the holidays. Leggings by DanaLouFit

Nutrition: I decided to start logging what I ate in a Word document each day for two reasons: first, out of pure curiosity. I usually think I eat pretty healthy, but do I really? It’s no secret I’ve put on some weight in the past few months with the stress of work, and I want to put the kibosh on that. Second, I know that nutrition is a super important aspect of marathon training, and I wanted to inspire myself to eat more vegetables and less sugar. I knew if I had to write it down (the good, the bad, and the ugly), I’d make better choices! I’m not counting calories at all, just logging what I eat. Although it was really hard at first – I hated to admit to the massive amount of chocolate and wine – it’s definitely helped me make better choices. So far, I haven’t felt any pressure or obsessive thoughts coming up about my food, but if I do, the logging will definitely go. Recovery comes first!

Gear: In preparation for the start of training, I decided to finally bite the bullet and get a new Garmin. It’s my first one in 6 (!!) years! I ended up going with the Garmin Vivoactive HR at the recommendation of a reader (thanks Mike!) and my coach, and I have to say, I love it. Although I haven’t run with a GPS in probably 2 years, I could feel myself improving over the past month of increased workouts, and I really wanted a way to quantify that. I won’t be focusing on pace AT ALL for this training cycle, but I do want to be able to track my mileage and heart rate and see how I’m doing.

My precious!


  • Monday, 1/09/17, 4 miles extra easy: The official start of training! I felt like a kid on Christmas morning. Clearly, I have forgotten the pain that awaits me. I made a mad dash outside to run my 4 easy miles once the temperature broke 32 degrees (hoping the ice would be slightly less…icy by then). After taking a rest day on Sunday, my legs must have been a little rusty because that 4 miles didn’t feel as easy as maybe it should have, but I ended up at a perfectly even 10:21 pace for every single mile and a total of 4.5 miles. How’s that for consistency?
A snow bath is the same as an ice bath, right? Follow me on Instagram for daily training stories and videos! Leggings by DanaLouFit
  • Tuesday, 1/10/17, Cross-training: I’m subbing a bit at the barre studio while things are (briefly) lighter at work, so I taught the 6 am class this morning. While teaching is still a great workout, it’s not quite as intense as taking a class, so I hopped on my bike trainer for a half hour progression ride when I got home. For these workouts, I just find something about the length I want to do on Aaptiv, hit play, and go!
  • Wednesday, 1/11/17, 6 miles in one hour: The goal of Wednesday’s workout was to run 6 miles in one hour, and despite the fact that that’s a totally reasonable pace for me, I felt a weird amount of pressure for some reason. I went out too fast and was pretty inconsistent throughout the run, but I ended up with 6 miles at 9:30 pace. It is what it is!
  • Thursday, 1/12/17, Cross-training: Despite waking up with 5 inches of snow still in my backyard on Tuesday, by Thursday, it was 70 degrees! So I got my bike off the trainer and rode for 55 minutes through the hills around my neighborhood on my lunch break. I also taught the 5:30 pm barre class – good core work!
    Love getting out the always flattering cycling gear!

    Friday, 1/13/17 – DAY OFF: While I probably shouldn’t have anything to say about taking a day off, this one was tough because I am so excited about training. I know it’s the best thing for my body, especially with a busy weekend coming up, but man. I really wanted to be out there! Remind me of this in about 6 weeks.

  • Saturday, 1/14/17 – Cross Training: I taught the early morning barre class and then headed out to hike Table Rock with AJ! It’s a pretty grueling hike of about 7 miles round trip with about 2,000 feet of elevation gain on the way up over 3.6 miles – aka an awesome workout. Buns of steel are on the way!
    Not much of a view with all the fog, but I guess you could say the fog is a view in itself. Shirt and pants by KUHL
  • Sunday, 1/15/17 – Long Run (10 miles): So all weekend I was feeling really excited about my long run. I felt really confident I could do itΒ  and was looking forward to really kicking off training. Well, when I woke up Sunday morning, all that confidence was gone. I was sore from hiking and tired! But I got up anyway and did it, and you know what? It went a thousand times better than I could have hoped. I ended up with a 10:04 overall pace and my last three miles were my fastest. I even managed an 8:38 last mile, just for fun. I’m thrilled with how it went and it was a great confidence booster for the weeks to come!
    Taking a victory leap!
    Danielle @thetrexrunner is training for the #PragueMarathon! Find out how Week 1 went #ontheblog today. Click To Tweet

Thoughts/Feelings: I’m excited and optimistic about the literal and figurative road ahead! I do find myself getting nervous before every single run, though. It’s strange – I really want this to work for me and my body and I’m scared it won’t! Only time will tell. I’m feeling completely dedicated and have a borderline creepy devotion to everything my coach is saying. I’m even taking supplements now (tart cherry extract, turmeric, glucosamine, and vitamin c with rose hips), for goodness sake. I’m watching inspirational running videos. I’m foam rolling on purpose. I’m channeling the spine of 2012-2013 Danielle and pretending like the spine of 2014-2016 Danielle was just a bad misunderstanding between me and my anatomy. Stay tuned!

PS – I apologize for writing the longest training recap in the history of the world. I had a lot to say.

PPS – I’m doing lots over on Instagram these days, including updating my “stories” with all my workouts, so check it out!

LEAVE A COMMENT: What are you training for? Are you excited about running these days, or struggling with motivation?








15 thoughts on “Prague Marathon Training Recap: Week 1

  1. Killer start, lady! I hope that the goodness continues to flow! I am curious about the garmin, and I want to know more thoughts about it–I would love to upgrade my garmin. Do you wear it throughout the day as well?

    1. Thanks! I hope so, too! Yes, I do wear the Garmin throughout the day as well. I wasn’t really planning on it (I’m not a watch person) but I like it tracking my movement. A bonus is that it also vibrates to remind me to move every hour or so! I was really hesitant to upgrade my Garmin since I loved the old model I had so much, but this one is super easy to use and definitely the right choice. Plus, it tracks so many different activities, both indoor and outdoor, so there’s really nothing I can’t use it for! Highly recommend.

  2. I can completely relate to getting back out there and getting reacquainted with working out. It was tough at first but eventually the motivation and excitement came before each workout. I began again in the December timeframe as well and getting back into shape is a significant goal of mine to achieve progress with by March. In March I am going on a pretty expensive vacation to visit family; I decided to book my stay at the Hyatt resort. Not cheap! But oh so nice haha, so I decided that since the trip was super nice and super expensive, I have to earn it. That included three goals: Finishing a writing project which is done! Getting back into shape, and doing great in my classes coming up. Works in progress, wish me luck! Haha πŸ™‚

    1. Hey Melissa! Those are great goals! It’s really hard starting up again, so I think it’s great that you have something awesome like a vacation to motivate you! Before you know it, the workouts and fitness will just be habit (that’s what I’m telling myself, anyway). Which Hyatt are you visiting?

  3. After a pretty rotten 2016, which affected everything, I’m determined to turn the page and make 2017 a good year. I’ve got Fargo and Blue Ridge halfs this spring, and am looking to ramp up for my first road marathon in 2018. Thanks for these posts, for, as usual, a great blend of motivation and introspection.

    1. That’s a great attitude, John! It sounds like you have some fun races to look forward to – you know how much I love Fargo! Have you really never run a road marathon before? Why did I think you have done a bunch? I guess maybe that is all the half marathons I’m thinking of. I can’t wait to hear how you tackle the challenge!

  4. No apologies necessary – we want to hear all the gory details! And yes, I think you and your spine will come to an agreement as long as you keep on doing what you’re doing. Also, don’t underestimate the power of your mental game – if you think you can…. well, you know.
    PS – love that KUHL shirt and need one ASAP…or as soon as I get my new ambassador code πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks, haha! I knew you would appreciate all the gory details but not sure everyone else would.

      I think the mental aspect is definitely part of it, but this isn’t one of those injuries where “if there’s a will, there’s a way.” My spine is literally disintegrating. That just is what it is. I have no doubt that I CAN finish the marathon, but can I finish it upright or will I be crying in pain? There’s some things I can do to improve my odds, but I may have to accept reality. I’m hoping that the long break will have done some good – we’ll see!

  5. This is motivating me to get focused for Eugene! My running has really been tough lately. I’m not sure what is going on, but I’ve decided that if I strengthen my entire body, it will help my running. So like you, I’m planning to work out every day, eat healthier and do more stretching. Keep it up!!

    1. A little extra strength training never hurts! It just can be hard to get motivated to do it. I wish I was in Tulsa so we could do it together!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *