Northern (PA) High School junior Marlee Starliper had a breakthrough season in 2017 that included a 13th-place finish at Foot Locker Nationals and a number of course records in Pennsylvania, though expectations are now higher for one of the top prospects of the Class of 2020. In Pennsylvania, she's coming off a season where she swept district and state championship honors in Class AA while also posting the nation's fifth fastest time with an effort of 16:50. Starliper proceeded to win another state title in the 3200m this spring and competed in her first USA Junior Championships at the 5K distance in June. Don't miss the Pennsylvania star compete in 2018, but in the meantime check out her summer training blog.
Week 5 (August 27-September 2)
Monday: 7.4 miles, 7:20/mi
First day of school...I did NOT want to go back! Today was supposed to be a long run, but the temperature was in the 90s and it was very humid. Me, my coach, and one of the boys from the guys team started out the run like normal, but after the first few miles we began to slow down. We were all feeling the effects of the heat and humidity, and we actually stopped for a minute under a tree in the shade to cool down; the heat was getting so unbearable. The way back to the school was rough, so we cut it short. Later in the evening, I did yoga.
Tuesday: 6.5 miles
A meet (more like a scrimmage invitational) was scheduled for my team to race today, but after driving to the meet, we found out that it was cancelled due to the heat! My coach was going to have me do a workout today, but then he decided that since the meet was cancelled, it would probably be smart if my workout would also be postponed. Our team ran along a shady bike path in the park where the meet was supposed to take place, to put in some miles. Once again, the heat felt super draining. This time, we made sure to loop back to our water bottles after a few miles. Afterwards, I did some strides. Once I got back home, I did about 15 minutes of core work.
"Going back to school has been a rough transition, and the weather made for very difficult (and sometimes frustrating) runs. However, I am keeping in mind that I still put in good work this week because of all the extra effort that the heat required from me."
Wednesday: 6 miles, easy, 8:00/mi
Again, SO HOT AND HUMID! This weather has definitely been extra difficult to run in, so today we decided to just try to get through some easy miles. We started out running on the roads, then looped back to the school for some water before heading out again. My legs felt heavy, just like they have the past two days, so I didn't push this run. I felt the need for some more yoga to recover and stretch out with, so I did my yoga routine for a second time this week when I got home.
Thursday: 4 miles, easy
Today still had the same weather. My body was not feeling well, so I decided to play it safe and cut this run a bit short because I felt so crappy.
Friday: 6.4 miles, 7:30/mi
Today was supposed to be a hill workout, but when we tested the hill during the warmup, it was slippery with mud due to some rain last night. My coach decided to have us do a long run instead, but today I felt as if I could barely pick up my feet, so I listened to my body and didn't go the total distance so that I could avoid over-exerting myself.
I woke up feeling sick this morning. :( I realize now that the transition back to school, combined with not quite enough sleep, and the difficult weather made me really worn down. The only focus for today was rest, so I took completely off and made sure to get a nice long nap. My goals are focused on the end of the season, so right now I find it most important to stay feeling fresh and prepared for the long season ahead.
The "workout" for today was another long midday nap. By the end of this second day of complete rest, I felt very thankful because I was already starting to feel better and more like myself again. :)
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Total Mileage: 30 miles
Reflection: This was a very tough week physically and mentally. Going back to school has been a rough transition, and the weather made for very difficult (and sometimes frustrating) runs. However, I am keeping in mind that I still put in good work this week because of all the extra effort that the heat required from me. This week's mileage was not what I had planned, but I am glad that I didn't push my body too far and was able to avoid a potentially worse outcome. Now I can look forward to my first race at the PTXC Invitational this Saturday!