How Runners Prepare for Fall

It was the last week of summer vacation for our little dude!  I would love to say this summer just flew by, but with him basically being home since Spring break of 2020 and the fact that I’m exhaustingly pregnant, well that would be a lie.  We did have a pretty fun weekend to celebrate the beginning of the school year, and it got me thinking about the things I usually like to do this time of year as a mother runner.  Runners don’t always view the last weeks of summer the same as the rest of the population, and we certainly don’t prep for Fall like everyone else.  This week I’m sharing the things I typically like to do to mark the ending of Summer running.

I’d also be remiss if I didn’t mention the fact that this was another busy and hectic week.  I actually took Monday and Tuesday off work, and it still felt like I didn’t have enough time in my schedule to fit everything in.  I had one doctors appointment that went just fine, and then I finally made it back in to see my chiropractor.  My back has been cranky again, and the visit was definitely helpful.  I do think I need to be better about going weekly until the end of this pregnancy if I don’t want to feel like crap for the next 5-6 weeks.

Since I wasn’t working, I decided to try to get in as much sleep as possible on Monday and Tuesday.  Which meant I hit the treadmill instead of the road when I finally got out of bed.  Even though my kid is going back to school, it’s still very clear that mother nature is not ready to give up high heat indexes.  I also ended up working out at home on Thursday and Friday because of all the work I needed to get caught up on.  Once again, the one kettlebell and pair of dumbbells we have lying around came in handy!

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I tried to wake up Saturday morning so I could run outside, but it just wasn’t happening.  I settled for 8 miles on the treadmill, and some extra sleeps.  My dad drove in to San Antonio Saturday afternoon, and we decided to take our soon to be second grader over to Andretti’s to celebrate school starting on Monday.  The place is known for go-karting, but we stuck to the ropes course, zipline, bowling, and arcade.  And for someone like me who gets over-stimulated super easily, that was PLENTY.  We had a lot of fun, but that was probably the last “big” thing we will do before we’re a family of four, because my body was TIRED afterwards.

I’m absolutely looking forward to Fall starting (at some point in the next couple of months for those of us in the South).  It’s my favorite part of the year, and it’s hands down the best time of year for runners.  Every year I find myself dreaming about runs where I don’t lose half my weight in sweat and come home 3 shades tanner than I left.  I know we probably have a good amount of time before we actually see a change in the temps, but this year Fall is a little more special, since we’ll be welcoming our second Brambila baby into the world.  So while my last few weeks of summer are certainly looking different this year, here’s a few of my favorite things I do as a runner to welcome the changing of the seasons

How Runners Prepare for Fall

This is the time of year that seems to be the most hectic and busy for me, and I know lots of other mother runners probably agree.  We’re getting ready for back to school for the kids, and there’s a good chance our race planning, prepping, and training is about to begin.  With so much going on all at the same time, I feel like there’s a few things I do every year to help smooth the transition from summer to fall.  Here’s a few ways I celebrate the last weeks of summer.

  • Check Winter Accessories – It will probably be a while before we need things like gloves or ear warmers, but I still like to give them a once over to make sure I don’t need to start looking for a replacement.  There is nothing worse than a good cold front blowing in and realizing last years gloves have a hole in them!
  • Hit Summer Sales – Since I live in the South, we can usually get away with tanks and shorts for several months longer most states.  Still, sometimes summer colors and prints go on sale this time of year, and running clothes are expensive.  So if I can grab them for a little cheaper, I definitely don’t object.
  • Maximize Family Time – Knowing that school is starting and training is going to be ramping up, I usually make it a point to soak as much time as possible with my family.  Playing the Tetris game of school drop-offs, pick ups, and fitting my training plans into all of that is tricky.  Plus, having a busier schedule tends to make me a lot more exhausted, which means I may not be up for the same amount of adventures. 
  • Start Meal Prepping – Since I know I will probably short on time, I try to meal prep as much as possible.  I love making freezer pancakes, smoothie packs, and batches of  muffins that can last me all week.  My husband is great about grilling a few days worth of meat that we can use in different quick recipes.  Having some staples on hand helps me make sure I don’t unintentionally under-fuel when I’m busier than usual.
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  • Test Out Headlamps – The mornings don’t go from light to dark over night, but it’s easy to suddenly realize that the first 30 min of your run are now dark enough to require some assistance.  Because I don’t normally use a headlamp during the Summer months, I make a point to break all of those suckers out and either make sure they hold a charge or have a fresh set of batteries before it’s so dark that a headlamp is a non-negotiable.
  • Create Race Calendar & Training Plans – One of my absolute  favorite things to do in the last weeks of summer is break out the calendar!  As a type-A person, I cannot adequately describe the joy of creating a race calendar and training plans.  Seeing what I have to look forward to, where my workouts are going to fall, and knowing that training is about to kick off is the best!

Related Post: Marathon Training Plan Round Up

This Weeks Workouts

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Total Miles: 28 Miles
Total Workouts: 4
How the Run Felt
This week was almost exclusively ttreadmill miles.  I’m not ashamed to say that I chose sleep over getting outside, especially at this point in my pregnancy (and the Summer).  Keeping my runs on the treadmill also helped me run a more consistent pace, and I don’t hate that I have quick access to a bathroom that isn’t a port-a-potty.  I finally got outside for four miles on Friday, and I honestly felt like it was my best run of the week.  I wasn’t pushing the pace by any means, but I was definitely moving a little quicker than I have been.

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Saturday’s miles were once again back on the treadmill.  I knew we had some plans later in the afternoon, and I didn’t want to be exhausted from waking up at the crack of dawn.  I don’t love running more than about a 10k on the treadmill, because it does tend to get boring.  Especially If you’re running a fairly consistent pace.  Fortunately, I had the last few episodes of OuterBanks to keep me company.

How the WODs Felt
I felt pretty good in the box this week.  There were a few more snatches that I would personally prefer, but I’m happy to report that my belly hasn’t quite reached the point of interfering with the bar path (though we are getting pretty close).  Thursday and Friday, I had a lot more work to catch up on, so I opted for a couple of home workouts.  Both workouts were challenging, but very easy to program at home.  I will say that I miss having a bigger strength piece to my workouts when I’m getting them done at home.

What I’ve Been Listening 
I didn’t listen to a whole lot this week, since only one of my workouts was outside.  I started one new series called Something Was Wrong, which focuses on different individual stories of specific trauma’s or challenges that a person goes through.  The latest season is about a man who essentially conned several women into providing for him financially, while he lived a double life.  It reminds me of Dirty John, so I’m interested to see where it will go.

What Went Well
Celebrating the last weekend of Summer break with my boys was the absolute highlight.

What Went Shitty
My schedule was a little more packed than I’d prefer.

Plans to Improve Next Week
Enjoy having my son back in school, and get used to a little more structure in our days.

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