Destiny Collins (CA): Summer Training Blog

<p> <span style="font-size: 14px;">As part of the&nbsp;</span><strong style="font-size: 14px;"><a href="">Saucony 500 Mile Challenge</a></strong><span style="font-size: 14px;">&nbsp;campaign, MileSplit is asking several of the nation&#39;s top returning cross country runners to share with us in a blog format a weekly post of their summer training as they prepare for the upcoming 2014 XC season. What greater inspiration for developing high school runners than to see how their elite peers train and push through logging those summer miles, while staying motivated and hungry to get in the base and conditioning needed for their next season and year of races. Follow along and become fans of these great high school runners as they start the first step of their journey into a 2014 cross country season which they hopefully reach all their goals that they set out to accomplish.</span></p>

Rising junior Destiny Collins, who runs for one of the top cross country programs in the country at Great Oak High School in California, shares with us her first 3 weeks of summer training. Collins was a California state runner-up in the 1600 and ran a 4:45 personal best this past spring along with three sub 10:20 races at the two mile/3200 meter distance. She was the top finisher for her 8th place NXN squad last December in Portland with a 34th place individual showing at Nike Cross Nationals. Collins had sophomore year XC bests of 17:09 for 5K from a 3rd place state meet finish and 16:28 three mile from a third place finish at the Woodbridge Classic. She will be looking to lead her Great Oak squad back to NXN and compete for state titles as a team as well as herself individually in the coming 2014 cross country season.


Week 1 (7/7-7/13) - Week 2 (7/14-7/20) - Week 3 (7/21-7/27) - Week 4 (7/28-8/3) - Week 5 (8/4-8/10) - Week 6 (8/11-8/17) - Week 7 (8/18-8/24) - Week 8 (8/25-8/31)

After completing my sophomore track season I took two weeks off so my body could heal and recover from the long and grueling track season. It was nice to take the full two weeks with some swimming and one light run so when I would come back from my break I would be fresh and ready to run for my teammates and help lead our team to win our fourth state title and crack at another NXN berth in hope of running better than the year before.

Week 1(7/7-7/13)

7/7 - First day back I did an easy 3 mile run and then in the afternoon I did another easy 4 miles. (8 min pace)

7/8 - Second day ran another easy 3 miles and took the afternoon off. (8 min pace)

7/9 - Ran a fartlek of 2 on 3 minutes off for 35 minutes and that was my only run that day. The fartlek lasted about 4.5 miles.

7/10 - Ran 5 miles with now alumni Haley Dorris to catch up on things and also train together since we ended at the same time and had a similar training coming back into shape. (8 min pace)

7/11 - Easy 5 mile training run at 7:15 min pace.

7/12 - Easy long run of 8 miles with some hills right at 8 min pace.

7/13 - Recovery day, so no running.

Week 1 Total Mileage: 32.5 miles

Summer Total: 32.5 miles

Week 2 (7/14-7/20)

Now into week two, running became easier because official practice started for our cross country team so it was mentally easier because I now didn't have to run solo. Also since I didn't fall completely out of shape, the mileage build up is faster and easier than last year.

7/14 - Raced our time trial which is our qualifier for camp. Tempo/Raced 2.85 with a gradual incline. (16:40 and it felt pretty good because I worked my way up in speed during the course of the race) and then later that day cross trained and went swimming.

7/15 - Ran 5 miles right under 8 min pace and then that afternoon I went out for an easy 30 minute run. Things are starting to feel easier.

7/16 - Speed Workout so I did two 2mile repeats at 80% on our LT(lactate threshold) course which is on a dirt road that has some soft sand which makes it a little difficult and a hill. Later that evening went out for another 30 min run.

7/17 - Today I ran 7 miles at 8 min pace and it felt good.

7/18 - Speed Workout so we did 4x1000s as a relatively easy speed workout. Nice temperature so it didn't affect the workout and ran these around (3:40s to 3:50s on our dirt trail) and then later that evening went on a 4 mile run. Felt accomplished after the workouts today.

7/19 - Long Run of now 9 miles and took the afternoon off.

7/20 - Drove up to Big Bear for our XC Camp and did a one hour shake out run to get used to the elevation.

Week 2 Total Mileage: 45 miles

Summer Total Mileage: 77.5 miles

Week 3 (7/21-7/27)

Coming into this week I had to manually prepare myself for the change in elevation because this would be my first time training with the altitude. We went to a Big Bear in California where the elevation was anywhere from 6,750 to 9,000 ft.

7/21 - Speed Workout today and ran three 1.6 mile LT's. Surprisingly I didn't feel affected by the elevation so the workout went smoothly. First one was completed at 6:25 pace(10.08), then 6:23 pace(10:01) and then 6:20 pace(9:52). Later that day we did a scavenger hunt run which was around 3.5 miles and it was pretty fast because we were  trying to beat the boys and win donuts so that was a lot of fun. And of course the girls won and we received our beloved donuts the following day.

7/22 - The hardest run I have ever encountered. Today I did a 9 mile run but the it was 3.5 miles up hill which was very difficult and then 3.5 miles down and then 2 miles on a trail. Later ran 5 miles discovery run.

7/23 - Today we did a fartlek 3 on 2 min off for 35 minutes and it felt really good an then a 5 mile run later that evening.

7/24 - 5 mile run at 8 min pace. Afternoon was a fun "cross training" workout being to walk up to the water slides many many times and slide down.

7/25 - 4 mile tempo at 6:33 pace with mile warmup and cool and then later that evening a 45 minute run.

7/26 - 40 minute run and then left Big Bear

Week 3 Total Mileage: 45 miles

Summer Total: 122.5 miles

Week 4 (7/28-8/3)

Coming into this week I knew it was going to be difficult to run going on vacation and I tried to my best and get the most amount of runs ins with the amount of activities and plans I had there, so this week unintentionally the mileage went down.

7/28 - Warm up and core and then 4.5 mile tempo run. This run was a little difficult because of the adjustment to now a lower elevation and started to feel sick. Rested afternoon to feel better.

7/29-  Flew to Florida and it was an all day event so sadly no running.

7/29- Cross Trained and swam because we went to an amusement park.

7/30- 30 minute Fartlek 2 on 1 off. (4.5 miles completed) Afternoon ran 5 miles 8:15 mi/pace.

7/31- 6 miles at 8:00 mi/pace in the morning and decided to go later in the morning at 10:30. Horrible mistake of mine and it was the worst run of my life because of the humidity, so never again will I do that. Afternoon cross trained and swam.

8/1- 4 mile tempo run and then cross trained in the afternoon and swam.

8/2- 6 miles in the morning. Cross trained and swam in the afternoon.

8/3- Rest.

Week 4 Total Mileage: 30 miles
Summer Total: 152.5 miles

Week 5 (8/4-8/10)

Training into this week was easier because I was rejoined with my teammates once again and there was no humidity which is a plus. At this point we are about to switch to afternoon practices since school starts the following week.

8/4- 2x3 mile tempos in the morning and in the afternoon a recovery run of 4 miles.

8/5- Traveled home from Florida which was an all day affair so sadly no running.

8/6- 30 min Fartlek 2 on 1 off and then 3 miles recovery afterwards. It felt really great to be training with my teammates on this run. Afternoon I ran 5 miles.

8/7- 10 mile run in the morning. Afternoon cross trained and biked.

8/8- 6 mile run in the morning. Afternoon did 2x2mile LT's late at night which was quite fun and exciting because when it became dark it made me run faster and want get home, but a little scary because I didn't know if there were any coyotes. I caught myself going5:30 pace as if it was the Woodbridge Invitational so once I realized what I was doing I calmed my paced back down to around 6:10 pace down and finished the run with a half mile cool down.

8/9- 13 mile run at 7:50 pace and it felt really good.

8/10- Rest day so no running.

Week 5 Total Mileage: 55.5 miles
Summer Total: 208 miles

Week 6 (8/11-8-17)

Coming into this week school is starting which is good and bad. It's a good thing because now we do both doubles at school and you're never training alone. The bad thing about school starting is now we do our afternoon runs at 3 instead of at a later time around 6 when it's cooler, so that's a little bit of a mental transition. Coming into this week I'm really starting to feel like I'm getting into shape so it's quite an exciting feeling and I'm so excited yet really nervous to race in about 3 weeks. But here's my week 6 training.

8/11- 6 miles in the morning at 8:00 pace with a close friend in a nearby neighborhood. Afternoon 8 miles.

8/12- 6 mile run in the morning. Afternoon 4 mile tempo which felt pretty good and I was making good pace at 6:15 but then the wind hit me mile 3 and 4 so it slowed me down sadly so the pace for that was 6:21 pace. After the tempo then we had 4x200 on the terf.

8/13- No morning run because it's the First Day of School! In the afternoon we had an 8 mile run which was quite difficult with the adjustment of no nap that day and sitting in a chair all day not being very mobile.

8/14- Easy 4 miles in the morning. Afternoon we had 6x1000s on our dirt course/trail and these felt really really good. This workout made me really excited for state even though it's more than 100 days away but it made me excited since that's one of the only few 5Ks we do and they were ran between 3:30-3:40.

8/15- In the morning we ran bleachers and in the afternoon we ran 8 miles.

8/16- 14 mile long run which felt pretty good finishing right under 8:00 pace.

8-17- Rest day so no running.

Week 6 Total Mileage: 61.8 miles
Summer Total Mileage: 269.8 miles

Week 7 (8/18-8/24)

This week was a little off since our training got messed up by miss planning and by some crazy weather. Also this felt like a long week since this was out first full week of school so I was very excited for the weekend to come. All the runs felt pretty good though and now we are two weeks away from our first race, so we have to switch the mindset from training to getting ready to race.

8/18- 12 miles at 7:45 pace and the run felt so comfortable and it was so cool in the morning so it was the ideal run before school. In the afternoon we had 10 hill sprints up our hill but I don't know how long it is, I'm guessing around 75 meters.

8/19- Strength routine in the morning and in the afternoon we had our fundraiser yogurt run and it was 3 miles there and 3 miles back for a total of 6 miles. I must say running with $5 of yogurt isn't that much fun but the run was completed.

8/20- We were going to run 7 miles in the morning but the random lightning and thunder kept us from running. Temecula does have quite the bipolar weather I must say. In the afternoon we had a fartlek of 2 on 1 off for 30 minutes with 3 mile recovery run afterwards.

8/21- Stadiums in the morning and in the afternoon 8 miles.

8/22- 7 mile recovery run and I must say it felt really good so I went faster than usual and plus the want to take a shower afterwards always motivates you to run faster so the average pace for that was 7:34 pace. In the afternoon we had our speed workout and it was 5,5,5s and I did two of them. What you do is you run 5 minutes at 70% and then 5 minutes going 80% and then the last 5 minutes 85+% and then 5 minute rest and then repeat.

8/23- 13 miles long run at recovery pace.

8/24- Rest Day so no running.

Week 7 Total Mileage: 56.5 Miles
Summer Total Mileage: 326.3 Miles

Week 8 (8/25-8/31)

Just completed week 8 and it was a great week of training. All the runs felt great and I feel even more in shape then last week so I'm really excited for our first race September 5th at Seaside Invitational.

8/25- 12 miles at 8:00 pace and if went by really fast in the morning so that's always nice. In the afternoon I did 5 hill sprints and we had visualizations after practice getting us mentally ready for this season.

8/26- Core in the morning and in the afternoon we had 7 miles.

8/27- 7 miles in the morning and in the afternoon we had a choice of either 2 5,5,5s or a 4 mile tempo because it was hot so he gave us the choice and I chose the the 5,5,5s.

8/28- Stadiums in the morning and in the afternoon an easy 6 mile run.

8/29- 7 miles and it felt great. (7:45 min pace) and in the afternoon we had speed. For this speed workout it was really hot and we had to mentally get in-tune and ready for this not overly tough workout but slightly difficult speed workout with the heat doing 4 x mile repeats on our dirt trail. It was a great workout and I ran those in (5:35,5:355:27, and 5:48) It was slightly downhill on the first and third one and uphill on the second and fourth one. It was a great workout because also our team had a pack of 4-5 girls running together running consistent 5:40s and their last one being 5:57 so it was a good workout for the great oak girls.

8/30- Long run of 13 miles

8/31- Rest Day so no running.

Week 8 Total Mileage: 63.2 miles
Summer Total Mileage: 389.5 miles