NJ Marathon Training Week 15 Recap

I wish I could just pretend that the start of last week never happened.

The issue was low back pain. Not so much like I had pulled something, but more like all my muscles had been compressed and they felt so incredibly tight that I struggled to stand completely upright. I was doing gentle yoga whenever I could trying to stretch everything back out, but to no avail. I couldn’t even get into child’s pose.

Then I spent some time hanging upside down and that ended up being the turning point for the week.

Week 15 Grade: Should have been an F. I’m giving myself an A for effort. 

Monday, March 30: With the shoulder issues I had been having, strength training had gone completely out the window for a bit. Monday I went to MEGABarre and it was a relief to get some movement back into my arms.

Tuesday, March 31: 5 miles. My low back was killing me and I was not going to push myself unnecessarily. I opted for 30 minutes on the elliptical at the gym instead.

Wednesday, April 1: 5 miles pace. Still not pushing it. 35 minutes elliptical trainer and then I decided to attempt a short treadmill run. I was so busy trying to hold my body in such a way that my back wouldn’t hurt that running felt really foreign to me. I gave it up after a mile.

That night I went to aerial yoga class and as I mentioned on Friday this would be the best decision I ever could have made. Inverting myself with the support of the aerial fabric helped open up all the muscles in my lower back. I could actually feel it happening and it was such a huge relief.

Thursday, April 2: 5 miles. Rest day. I had a half day of work on Friday where I could go to the gym in the afternoon for as long as I wanted (or until 5pm when I would need to go pick up Betty) so I switched it up to give my low back an extra day of recovery following that awesome yoga class.

Friday, April 3: I didn’t know if I was going to run or not when I got to the gym, but I was feeling pretty good so I figured I’d give it a shot. I got in 5 miles @ 8:09 (!!!), stretched for about 20 minutes and then hopped in the whirlpool for awhile. Such a huge confidence boost!


Saturday, April 4: I was scared of what Saturday morning would bring after that run, but I rolled pretty easily out of bed and went to spin followed up by a yoga class which, although I was making loads of adjustments, I made it all the way through this time! I actually touched the floor with my legs straight in a forward bend. Doesn’t sound like much, but that is how little I was able to move over the past couple weeks.

Sunday, April 5: Go long. This run was weird for me. The schedule said 20 miles and I had absolutely no intention of doing that many. With no distance agenda and no time in mind besides GO SLOW and walk a lot if I needed to, I felt no pressure at all.

The first 13 miles were actually pretty easy. After that I started walking a lot. I could have pushed so much harder than I did, but I didn’t want to hurt myself and it was just so nice being outside (in shorts!). When I got into mile 16 and 17 I thought about calling Mr. Salt to get me because I was just not mentally into it, but then I got to 18 and realized that my legs still felt decent and I might as well finish the whole thing. So I did. My second 20 miler of this training cycle and now my taper begins.


I am SO happy to be tapering.

Week 15 Mileage: 26.

I had some pretty high hopes when this training cycle started and things were going really well aside from being stuck inside on the treadmill a lot more than I would have liked. And then…I kind of crashed and burned. I guess that’s life though and going into the last couple weeks of this at least I can say that I have been trying my best and I hope that the preparations I’ve made will get me to the finish line in New Jersey.

Thank you so much for all the support and kindness! I’m not done yet! Oh and extra special thanks to Cynthia, Sue, and Suz for the inversion table suggestions. I think I have Mr. Salt on board and hopefully I’ll have one in my house soon enough. 🙂

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend and a Happy Easter if that’s your thing! We celebrated with family yesterday and it was so much fun.





86 thoughts on “NJ Marathon Training Week 15 Recap

  1. elenajvance says:

    What a relief to have your last 20 miler done! Back injuries are brutal so you were smart to have taken the extra rest days and time to stretch! What a great feeling to just be to the tapering part of training!!

    • runsaltrun says:

      Work makes me hurt (sitting at a desk ruins my back), but I’m feeling a bit better now after some ibuprofen. Hopefully tomorrow won’t be so bad. Thanks lady!

  2. Sara @ lifebetweenthemiles says:

    I’m so sorry the beginning of the week was tough but it looks like aerial yoga was a HUGE benefit and way to rock that 20 miler! I hope you feel good today and have a great week! Also, I LOVE that pic of you, Mike and B…so sweet!

    • runsaltrun says:

      I am definitely going back there on Wednesday and should probably stick with it every Wednesday until the race or until I get an inversion table. Whichever happens first. 🙂 Thank you so much friend! I hope you have a great week too!

  3. DarlinRae says:

    I’m glad you seem to be on the upswing. I’m super impressed that you made it through that 20 miler after the week you had. I think other than the last few weeks, your training has been spot on, and I’m confident that that will help a ton on race day 🙂

  4. Judith / soveryslightlymad says:

    I love your dress! Your family is so adorable. I’m glad you’re feeling better. I can’t wait to read your race report. I was theeeeeese close to registering for that marathon, but decided that I’d rather train for a fall one. It looks like an awesome course. All my races by the ocean have been good. I think it’s the fresh air.

    • runsaltrun says:

      Thank you! 😀 I am definitely feeling that 20 today, but hopefully it won’t be an issue tomorrow. I hope we end up at the same race at some point! I don’t know why I keep signing up for spring marathons.

  5. Shawna says:

    you’re doing amazingly, girl. i can’t believe you’re still running such long runs after being in pain. you are such an inspiration! love the family pic. take care of yourself!

    • runsaltrun says:

      I’m just so glad I finally took my own advice and took a running break last week. It was so hard to make myself stop because obviously right in the middle of peak week is not when you want to have to. But it was the right idea. 🙂 Thank you friend!

  6. Jessica @ VEGGIE RUNNING MOMMA says:

    awe man. sorry to hear about your minor set back. I hope you start feeling better really soon and hopefully it’s just a sign that you really need that taper.
    Cute family picture 🙂

  7. Running Boston and Beyond says:

    You’ve put a tremendous amount of work into this training cycle, so I’m guessing you’re going to really rock your marathon. Seriously, the hay was pretty much in the barn when all this happened, so pat yourself on the good shoulder and take a very careful bow 🙂

    • runsaltrun says:

      That’s right where I am too and I hope it works out that way for the both of us. ❤ I have heard so many great things over the past week too! I'm so hopeful that there will be one in my house soon. 😀

  8. Chaitali says:

    Yuck, I’m sorry it was such a hard week 😦 I’m glad to hear the aerial yoga helped! I can definitely see that. I really felt like I got so much deeper into back and hip stretches with it and it seems like it opened things up more.

  9. afastpacedlife says:

    Glad you quit early when your back hurt. It’s a fast road to injury if you try to force a run by running the way you normally wouldn’t.

    You did a lot of good training in all of these weeks. You’re amazing and you’ve got a lot of grit. You’ll do great at the NJ Marathon.

    • runsaltrun says:

      Thank you so much. ❤ I'm just glad that I finally listened to my own advice and cut back. Regardless of the outcome, this race is really important to me and I'm looking forward to it!

  10. Mar on the Run! says:

    damn girl. Glad you RESTED as you needed and got the confidence boost. Continue listening to your body and you’ll do amazing!! LOVE that Easter family photo ❤ happy taper time!

  11. Anna @ Piper's Run says:

    So glad you are starting to feel better AND got in your 20 miler! Way to go! I’ve taken the easy road out for the last few months with my running and *I think* I am almost getting back to 100%. So hard to go from wanting to run a full this spring to questioning running a 10k .. but I’m getting there.

    • runsaltrun says:

      Soon this will all be a distant memory for you! It just really stinks at the time. I hated having to make the decision to not go for the full that I wanted in October, but in the end it was the good choice and you are making the best one too. 🙂

  12. FLRunnerBoy says:

    That week is a total “A” Salt you are such a trooper even toughing the week out doing what you did do. That’s inspiring and epic stuff missy!! I’m glad is taper time for you and some relief will come.

    • runsaltrun says:

      I’ve got to admit…when the run was over I went inside and cried and hugged Mr. Salt because I was so glad for this week to be over. I was dreading it for such a long time and now I know that I did what I could. It stinks to be hurt but I will never look back on this time and think I didn’t try my hardest. 🙂 Thanks Lee!

      • FLRunnerBoy says:

        And that’s the mentality that has gotten me through these last few months and it will pull you through too! I’m proud of you 🙂

  13. charissarunning says:

    I am SO GLAD the end of your week turned out better and SO PROUD of you for getting through your 20-miler. I really couldn’t be any more excited to see you cross that finish line in NJ! You’ve worked so hard for this and it will all pay off and culminate in a race that you will LOVE ❤

    • runsaltrun says:

      You are the sweetest. ❤ Thank you so much and I really hope you're right! Hahahaha hopefully I'll be upright when you see me and not crawling across the finish line!

  14. Nora @ 2 Generations Running says:

    Congrats! I really think you will do great on your marathon, even if your plans got a bit derailed recently. Enjoy the taper, it is seriously the best part of marathon training! 🙂 and by the way, I love your Easter dress- super cute!

  15. Maddie @ Dixie Runs says:

    Wow, great job on the 20 miler!!! That’s impressive by itself, but with back pain and not really being able to run all week that is awesome. I’ve heard great things about the inversion table, my best friend swears by it for her back pain! She just goes to the chiropractor once a month to get realigned.

    • runsaltrun says:

      I had a chiro that I LOVED but he doesn’t take my new health insurance and it’s so hard for me to get away from the office anyway. I miss him though. He always fixed me up! Having a table in the house would definitely be a huge help though I think. My body just gets so out of whack!

  16. Hailey @ Striding Strong says:

    You’re kinda awesome at missing some days due to injury and then having awesome runs afterwards! You rock 🙂 I so agree with the inversion table! My hairdresser has a lot of back problems and she has one and swears by it! I am so proud of you for getting out there and doing that 20-miler after these rough weeks. That itself, shows how awesome your race will be no matter what ❤ Woo hoo for some very well deserved taper time!

    • runsaltrun says:

      Oh I definitely wouldn’t call the 20 miler an awesome run, but it’s done and I’m happy that it’s over! I wonder how long it would take for a table to get to my house if I ordered it like right now. Hearing all the positive experiences is making me want one STAT! Thank you so much, lady! I DO deserve this haha!

      • Hailey @ Striding Strong says:

        It may not have felt good but you still got it done, which says A LOT 🙂 And your 8:02 pace run was awesome so no arguing there missy ;). I know Costco has one that has really good reviews for when you’re looking! 🙂

    • runsaltrun says:

      Thanks. 🙂 It was just something I had to try and get through. I just kind of wish it had happened on Saturday so I had an extra rest day before 5 more tomorrow.

  17. ambertherunner says:

    Man it truly sucks when your body doesn’t cooperate with your mind. But I’m glad you found that aerial yoga class (it sounds so much like you, regardless of if back pain was what prompted you to go) and it helped so much.
    Also SO MUCH KUDOS for checking that 20 miler off after a low mileage week. Embrace the taper 🙂

    • runsaltrun says:

      I hope he gets over his fear! I feel like a new person since going to that class. I’ve still been dealing with some things, but overall I plan on sticking with it! It did my body good!

  18. sarahdudek80 says:

    The inversion sounds amazing. Man, you have dealt with blow after blow the past few weeks. But you got that darn 20 miler in and I have to say that is pretty awesome. Honestly to get that in and not look and have it mess with your head is a big one. I think you will be glad that you made it work. Plus, you know how tough your body is and that will always keep you going come race day. Fingers crossed it is smooth running from here on out (pun intended).

    • runsaltrun says:

      It really was one thing after another. The good news is that besides my lower back I feel pretty darn good. Haha I hope it will be smooth running from here on out too. 🙂

  19. Jess@Flying Feet In Faith says:

    I’ve been following your training and overall you’ve had a rocking training season! The elliptical is a great option to replace a shorter run. You’re wise to stay injury free. I’m thanking God for my taper as well…three weeks to go here!! Sweet family picture!! 🙂

    • runsaltrun says:

      Thank you so much Jess. That’s what I was hoping for with the elliptical last week…it was mimicking the running, but without the extra stress. Three weeks to go for me too! We’re taper buddies! ❤ I hope it goes wonderfully for you!

  20. Lisa @ Running Out Of Wine says:

    Awesome job getting that 20 miler done! I have h definitely had runs like that where I have no idea what to expect and tell myself I can stop early, and then somehow end up making it through the whole thing. Im glad your back is improving! If you still go to a chiro you should try to get traction. That always helps my low back to feel amazing!

  21. Sun says:

    I’m sorry the week got off to such a rough start but it sounds like you were really able to turn things around with a great 20-miler on Sunday! Fingers crossed for you that the issues are behind you. And with the taper everything should heal right up 🙂

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