Sunday, March 29, 2009

Phase 5: week 2 of 4

Last week was a pretty good week. I was able to recover from my half and keep up the intensity. The workout on Wednesday wasn't as fast as some of the workouts we've done, but it was on a deceivingly rolling trail around BWI airport. It was also a 22 mile day on a work day, four days after a hard half-marathon.

One way to gauge my fitness is that I was actually looking forward to the run today. Arjun, Ryan, Zero, Kris and myself started at Druid Hill Park - one of the oldest planned parks in the US (1860). The hills in the park are rough - but, it gets even worse as you run north on Greenspring Avenue, near Pimlico race track and into Baltimore County. The total distance (22 miles) & hills were tough - but, we added 8 X 5.5 minutes @ tempo with 1 minute rest for good measure. This workout came straight from Jack Daniel's book - probably the most important purchase I've made in my marathon preparation.

The idea was to run hills so big that anything on the Boston course would feel like "love bumps". From the looks of bitterness on the faces of my friends today - I think the mission was accomplished. Although Ryan had some cramping issues - everybody ran well.

So, what now? The number of miles and intensity drop a little this week. I've got another 2X3 mile workout that I'll probably do at the airport again. Next Saturday is a "dress rehearsal" of sorts. The goal is to run 15 miles at marathon pace. After that day I'll only have one more run over 10 miles before Boston. I feel very lucky to have made it this far without injuries (knock on wood) or just feeling overwhelmed by the training.

Last Week

Monday: 6 miles
Tuesday: 8 miles
Wednesday morning: 4 miles
Wednesday evening: 18 mi 2X(5 mi easy 3 mi T pace) 1st 3 miler: 5:30+5:36+5:30=16:36 2nd 3 miler: 5:37+5:35+5:29=16:42 2 mi easy
Thursday: 14 miles
Friday: 9 miles 7X100
Saturday: 7 miles
Sunday: 22 mi 2mi easy 4X5.5 min T pace 1 min rest 10 mi easy 4X5.5 min T pace 1 min rest 2mi easy

Total: 88 miles

This week:

Monday: 7 miles
Tuesday morning: 4 miles
Tuesday evening: 14 mi 2X(3 mi easy 3 mi T pace) 2 mi easy
Wednesday: 14 mi
Thursday: 8 miles 8X100m
Friday: 6 miles
Saturday: 19 miles 2 mi easy 15 mi @ 5:42 pace 2 mi easy
Sunday: 8 miles

Total: 80 miles

Saturday, March 28, 2009

The packet arrives!

Get ready for over three weeks of minutiae that you may or may not care about :) With that warning - my race packet for Boston came this week!

The packet includes race bib pick-up card with my bib number (1143) and other information. Most importantly, it includes the 22 page program book with schedule of events, expo info, race start area info, "course amenities", finish area info, and beautiful maps to every important geographic area related to the marathon. There is also a booklet on "proper hydration" and of course, another booklet with overpriced (though, i'm sure i'll buy something) merchandise.

Over the next three weeks I'll review every detail - not that it will necessarily help on race day - but, it will somehow make me feel better. Although my first quick read did raise a few questions - 1) how am I getting to the start? - the program book makes it seem like the start line is blocked off for a five mile radius - unles you take the shuttle. But, you're supposed to be on the shuttle by 7am, which wouldn't be so bad, except that it's a 10am race. This is one of the many details that I'll rely on others who have run the race to help me decide.
2) It looks like I have to be at my corral by 9:10 (50 minutes before the race) - how crowded will it be? Is there room to jog around like there was at New York? Are there porta-johns at the corrals?
3)They have water stops every mile - i don't think i should take water every mile - but, how often should I? I guess it depends on the weather - but, i should put together some kind of plan.

to be continued . . .

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The day after a hard workout

One of the more significant additions that I've made to my training for Boston is what I do the day after a hard workout.

Nine of the last 12 weeks I've run a 13-15 miles the day after a hard workout. I've never done this before - it seems to help both physically & mentally. Physically, my body is having to adapt to a relatively long run when it's already depleted. But, I think the most positive effect is psychological. Even though the pace isn't too fast - it feels like I've accomplished something when I look at my watch and see that I've run 90+ minutes in the middle of the week.

Although I haven't been posting it on my blog - I've been lifting weights on most of these days as well. It's nice to have a different physical activity to mix things up a little - and my wife thanks me for not wasting away completely.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

An Anniversary

Early Saturday morning I woke up with a start - I looked over at the clock, it was 3:15am. I still had over an hour to sleep before my alarm went off to make the drive down to RFK for the half-marathon. My nerves, however, wouldn't let me get those extra z's - but, it was a good nervousness. I was feeling confident in my training - I knew I was ready for a fast one that day. My confidence also reminded me that an anniversary of sorts was around the corner.

I started thinking about my senior year of college, there was about a six-week period starting in February until the end of March of that year when everything seemed to go right where my running was concerned. I won the 3k & 5k at indoor conference (MCC - now Horizon League) - and then on March 25th, I ran the 10k at the Alabama Relays.

It's not that this was really an important meet - I don't remember being especially nervous about it. I do remember starting out with the lead pack - feeling very relaxed. I remember my assistant coach on the back stretch calling out my splits every lap. I remember that my first 5k split was ~15:15 - which was on pace for a big PR. I then remember feeling stronger as I went through the second 5k - soon I was running on my own - the laps falling away - not that there wasn't effort - but, it wasn't a forced effort - it felt natural.

As I came down the the final laps my coach seemed to be getting excited - I don't quite remember when he started telling me I had a shot at it - but, I remember him yelling with 600 meters to go that I needed a 65 last lap for a sub 30 min 10k. It sounds ridiculous now - but, somehow I found a little something extra - sprinting that last lap as hard as I could. As I crossed the finish line I looked over at my coach -who was running towards me along with a half dozen teammates. He was yelling "you were under!" - soon my teammates were piling on me - like I had made the last second shot in the NCAA basketball tournament.

Although I had some chances to run faster that year - including Penn - I never got within 40 seconds of that time. I guess that in some ways I keep running to recreate that "one shining moment." I'll never come close to that time again - but, the great thing about running is that I can find new goals - and feel just as good about meeting the new goals as I did on that cool March evening 10 years ago today.

Man, I'm getting old.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Well, do ya punk?

Staring down a .44 in the hands of Dirty Harry - and not being quite sure about how many shots he's fired - that's about how I feel planning on going sub-2:30 at Boston. But, given my half-marathon time this last weekend, I think it's time to seriously consider it.

There is a race split calculator that's specifically designed for the Boston course - which I've been planning on using once I had run my half-marathon. They ask for your goal time, age, gender, and recent race time - and they give you approx mile splits given the infamous hills of the course. It also gives you a "predicted" time - based on the recent race time. Here is what it spit out for me.

1.0 0:05:32 5:32 0:05:26 5:26
2.0 0:11:11 5:39 0:10:59 5:33
3.0 0:16:48 5:36 0:16:31 5:31
4.0 0:22:21 5:32 0:21:58 5:27
5.0 0:28:10 5:49 0:27:42 5:43
6.0 0:33:52 5:41 0:33:18 5:35
7.0 0:39:33 5:41 0:38:53 5:35
8.0 0:45:23 5:49 0:44:37 5:43
9.0 0:51:04 5:40 0:50:12 5:34
10.0 0:56:52 5:48 0:55:55 5:42
11.0 1:02:41 5:48 1:01:37 5:42
12.0 1:08:23 5:41 1:07:13 5:35
13.0 1:14:05 5:42 1:12:50 5:36
14.0 1:19:48 5:42 1:18:27 5:37
15.0 1:25:38 5:50 1:24:11 5:44
16.0 1:31:09 5:31 1:29:37 5:25
17.0 1:37:04 5:55 1:35:26 5:49
18.0 1:42:57 5:52 1:41:12 5:46
19.0 1:48:39 5:42 1:46:49 5:37
20.0 1:54:30 5:50 1:52:34 5:44
21.0 2:00:34 6:03 1:58:31 5:57
22.0 2:06:08 5:34 2:04:00 5:28
23.0 2:11:46 5:38 2:09:33 5:32
24.0 2:17:26 5:39 2:15:07 5:34
25.0 2:23:04 5:38 2:20:39 5:32
26.0 2:28:49 5:44 2:26:18 5:38
26.2 2:29:59 1:10 2:27:28 1:09

So, should I?

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Phase 5: week 1 of 4

I'm finally entering the final phase of my training for Boston. During these final four weeks (have I written "final" enough in last two sentances?) I'm going to try to post more frequently than I have recently - focusing on the history and uniqueness of the Boston Marathon. I'll also have a lot to say about what has worked in my training and where I've struggled.

Whatever happens four weeks from tomorrow - I know that my training has improved my fitness to a level I haven't seen for awhile. How do I know that? Yesterday was my first real test since my training started in November. I ran the National Half-Marathon in DC - although it was cold (~30 @ the start) and an early morning (7am) - the wind was pretty much non-existent. I started out with the lead group of marathoners - our first mile was 5:29 - which was about what I planned to average over the 13.1 miles. As we descended down E. Capital Ave to The Mall the group picked up the pace a little - our second mile was ~5:20.

Although I missed the 3rd & 4th mile markers - I could tell that they were picking the pace up even faster - and I didn't quite feel comfortable running 5:15's. So, I backed off the pace a little around 3.5 miles. Around the 5 mile mark we started to ascend gradually - through these hills my mile splits slowed to between 5:30-5:40. After the 7 mile mark the course started downhill again - I knew that the significant hills were pretty much over - and I started to push the pace. My splits went back down ~5:20 - with my 10th mile at a 5:06 (the marker certainly could have been off). I was 53:45 through 10 miles - I usually fall a part in 1/2 marathons after the 10 mile mark - but, I felt strong. I was able to average a little over 5:20 in the last 3 miles - coming through at 1:10:36.

A week ago I said I'd be happy with a 1:12:00. Then I had a confidence boosting workout on Tuesday that made me think that a sub-1:11:00 was reasonable. This is really the best that I imagined myself running when I started this crazy trip back in November. There are so many things that can go wrong in marathon training. So far, knock on wood, the training seems to be working out perfectly - pushing me to my highest level of fitness without leaving me stale or injured.

Next is the "easy" part. I have two more weeks of decent training (although lower mileage than my fourth phase) and then the wonderful taper.

More evidence that this training plan is good preperation for the marathon is the performance of Brennan Feldhausen yesterday. He ran a very strong 2:42 for his first marathon at the National Marathon. Brennan and I've been runing a lot of our training together - and I think we have a similar philosophy. He not only ran a good time - he looked very strong doing it. Hopefully next month, I can execute as well as he did yesterday. Great job Brennan!

This week is a little step up in mileage. The first few days will be pretty easy as I recover from yesterday. I'm planning a massage on Tuesday to get the kinks worked out. Then it's back to business on Wednesday with a long tempo workout - and my last 20+ miler this weekend.

Last Week

Monday: 8.5 miles
Tuesday morning: 4 miles
Tuesday evening: 17 mi total 9 mi easy 6X1mi (5:24;5:20;5:27;5:13;5:19;5:10) 1 min rest 2 mi easy
Wednesday: 8.5 miles
Thursday: 9.5 miles 5X100m
Friday: 4 mi
Saturday: 15 miles National Half-marathon 1:10:36
Sunday: 10 miles
Total: 76.5 miles

This Week

Monday: 7 miles
Tuesday: 8 miles
Wednesday morning: 4 miles
Wednesday evening: 18 mi 2X(5 mi easy 3 mi T pace) 2 mi easy
Thursday: 10 miles
Friday morning: 4 miles
Friday evening: 9 miles 6X100
Saturday: 6 miles
Sunday: 22 mi 2mi easy 4X1mi <5:30 10 mi easy 4X1mi <5:30 2mi easy
Total: 88 miles

Friday, March 20, 2009

The race cometh

Well - the big one is exactly one month away. But, I have my hardest planned effort to-date tomorrow morning (The National Half-marathon in DC). I thought it would be a good chance to go over some of the race advice in Lore of Running, by Tim Noakes. I'll go over some of the advice in the other books that I've been using for my training as I get closer to Boston.

The Day Before Competition:

Drive over the course for a final time, paying special attention to the last section of the race.

Well, these days you don't need to drive because most races have a youtube of the course online. I've watched the National course about 3-4 times - including once today. It's flat at the beginning - a steady hill from 5-8 miles and generally downhill after that. So, I'm not looking for even splits.

Eat Wisely

The main message here is to not have the any GI issues. I made sure to include some protein tonight - but, not much sugar. I had a small steak, broccoli, wheat french bread, crackers, and toast with peanut butter and honey for "dessert".

Assemble your running gear the night before and ensure that you have everything

Complete - except that I just remembered I need to attach my chip to my shoe.

Get adequate rest

Right after I'm done typing I'm going to bed. Of course it's going to be difficult with a 7am race that's 40 miles away. I'm planning on heading out the door at 5am

The Day of the Race

Wake up correctly

There is nothing correct about a 4:45am wake up call. The author talks about finding a way to wake up "gradually" - I fear if I don't heed my watch alarm right away I'm not going to make it up.

Dress appropriately for race conditions

This will be tricky tomorrow. It's supposed to be 32 degrees at 7am. If you're going to check your warm-up clothing you pretty much have to only have on your racing gear for at least 15 minute before the race (the last call to the line) - so, I went to Walmart and bought some cheap sweats that I can throw away at the start. Most races know people will do this - so, they'll collect the sweats and give them to the poor. As for the actual race, I'm going to go with just my singlet and, as my wife calls them, "man panties". However, I'm going to wear gloves and a winter hat to start out. I'll abandon those within the first few miles.

Make your prerace meal a winner

It's the same basic idea as the meal the day before the race. Don't eat anything that will put your stomach in knots - or worse . . . Also, coffee is a good idea. I started drinking coffee before races in college - it seems to work pretty well for longer races.

I'm planning on eating a Dunkin Donuts egg-white flat bread breakfast sandwich tomorrow morning. I know that sounds odd - but, it's pretty light on the stomach. That - and of course a cup of joe.

Allow yourself ample warm-up time

I plan on being there at least an hour before the race. I'll probably jog easily for about 10 minute 40-50 minutes before the race. Do some good stretching - more dynamic rather than static (I'll have to write a post on this "controversy later"). I also have another pre-race habit I learned in college - I lay still - close my eyes and imagine a red liquid filling my body from my feet to my head. Then I imagine the liquid turning blue - again starting from my feet to my head. The effect is that I'm relaxing every muscle in my body. I may run a few strides as well - to get my muscles ready to run fast. I'll also try to have a cup of water that I can take small sips from - the nerves can lead to a little cotton mouth sometimes.

That's it! Time to get some rest.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Phase 4: week 5 of 5

I promise that from now on I'll try to do some editing of my verbal diarrhea - I know that I had a point when I started writing my last post - but, looking at it now - I'm not sure what it was. Maybe this is why I should stick to training related posts : )

So, this last week was a slight decrease in intensity and mileage. I actually felt pretty good on my long run today. It marked the last of my four hardest weeks of training for Boston. I averaged almost 96 miles per week over the last four weeks.

This week is the last week of my fourth "phase." Other than the fact that Boston is only 5 weeks from tomorrow - it means that Saturday is my "tune-up" race - the National half-marathon in DC. I'm looking to average 5:30's - which works out to ~1:12:00. The course does have some hills - so, if I'm a little off the pace I won't be too upset.

Monday: 5.5 miles
Tuesday morning: 4 miles
Tuesday evening: 16 mi 2X(3 mi easy 4mi T pace)
1st 4 miler: 5:34+5:39+5:37+5:43=22:34 2nd 4 miler: 5:39+5:38+5:32+5:31=22:21 2 mi easy
Wednesday: 13 miles
Thursday: 10 miles 5X100m
Friday: 11.5 mi
Saturday: 9 miles
Sunday: 22 miles
Total: 91 miles

Monday: 8.5 miles
Tuesday morning: 4 miles
Tuesday evening: 17 mi 9 mi easy 6X1mi T pace 1 min rest 2 mi easy
Wednesday: 14 miles
Thursday: 9 miles 8X100m
Friday: 4 mi
Saturday: 15 miles National Half-marathon
Sunday: 8.5 miles
Total: 80 miles

Friday, March 13, 2009

Faith & Reason (doubt)

A brief warning - 90% of the following post has nothing to do with running - rather it is related to the TV show Lost, Jim Cramer vs Jon Stewart, and Descartes. I blame Brian Godsey's blog for putting me in a philisophical frame of mind. You've been warned - so, here it goes.

I consider myself a "man of reason." I feel like most of the world's problems are caused because people are appealing to faith rather than reason. The quote on my google page today was from the writer Norman Mailer - "Any war that requires the suspension of reason as a necessity for support is a bad war." It alarms me how often people rely on emotion, faith, or pure momentum to make choices in this world. In my mind it's a major reason we find ourselves in an unpopular war and a major recession. As a society we suspended reason - or more specifically doubt - in these two areas in the last decade.

So, how is doubt related to reason? The famous "I think therefore I am" is taken from Descartes meditations. There is a line of philosophical thought that posits we cannot even be sure of our own existence because we cannot trust our senses. Our senses are our only window to the world - and yet we know they can be tricked - so, how do we know if the world or even we exist? So, Descartes says - if even i can doubt the existence of the world - "is there anything I can't doubt?" well, i guess i can't doubt that i'm doubting - and if i'm doubting then i must exist. so, i don't know about all this other stuff that i call the universe - it might not exist - but, at least i can confidently say that I exist, because I think (doubt).

The central conflict in Lost is between faith & reason - the character Locke represents faith, and Jack represents reason. The arc of the plot is a see-saw battle between the values of faith and the values of reason - this season the values of faith seem to be winning out. All the characters are ignoring any doubts they might have - all for different reasons. Jack & Locke represent the struggle that we have within ourselves. We need reason/doubt so we don't overextend ourselves - and we need faith to get out of bed in the morning. In the end - as much as I fight for more reason in this world - I understand that we need both.

Jim Cramer, of CNBC's Mad Money was on Jon Stewart last night. They didn't say one word about religion - but, it was about how Jim Cramer had so much faith in the financial system - and how he, and others like him, communicated that faith to the marketplace - and the complete lack of doubt or reason led us to overextend ourselves. Stewart's point is that journalism should be about doubt - not cheerleading. But, how do we get ourselves out of this recession? Eventually enough people will have to have some faith - hopefully along with a lot of reason - and take a chance.

So, now for the 10% about running. When I started planning for the Boston marathon back last summer - wasn't that an act of faith? Well, at least some of it was. There is no way I could know exactly what would happen over the six months of training that was focused on the marathon. I had to take at least a little leap of faith - that my body would hold up - that i would still be interested in it six months later etc. The great thing about making these leaps of faith about your own behavior is that it feels good when you can make them become real. As important as doubt is - it is rarely accompanied by those same feelings - although without reason it would be impossible to make dreams real.

It's complicated.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Quote: Emil Zatopek

"You can't climb up to the second floor without a ladder . . . When you set your aim too high and don't fulfill it, then your enthusiasm turns to bitterness. Try for a goal that's reasonable, and then gradually raise it. That's the only way to get to the top."

Easy for a guy who won the 5k, 10k, and marathon in the same Olympics to say. But, he has a very good point - even more for those of us who run for purely recreational purposes. Yes - you have to put some pressure on yourself to run your best - but, you have to be realistic of what you can do given your ability, time to train, age etc . . .

Back when I started this blog I layed out some goals for Boston. My "A" goal was to break 2:30 - but, I was sure to include some less challenging goals because you never know what's going to happen - or how your body is going to respond to training.

I won't make a final goal until after my half marathon tune up on 3/21 - but, my training so far seems to point to a 2:33-34. That would still be a PR - and I certainly would be happy about that kind of time. But, it's very tempting to go for the sub 2:30 anyways - 2:29 might be only 2 minutes faster than 2:31 - but, it sure sounds better. However, I've already tried foolishness like that at the 2007 NYC marathon and paid for it. I was right at 1:15 at the half and struggled through a 1:22 second half. I completly lost motivation for 3-4 months - gained 15 pounds - and have been trying to get back to that level of fitness ever since. Hopefully I've learned my lesson - to be completely honest with myself and what I'm ready to run on 4/20.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Phase 4: week 4 of 5

Well, we had a sixty degree change in the weather from Wednesday to Saturday on the east coast. The ten degree temp on Wednesday highlighted how much "fun" it is to train for a spring marathon and the 70+ degree temp this weekend reminded me how few weeks I have left before Boston - only six short weeks from tomorrow - and two of those weeks will be spent basically resting.

Sitting here with next to an open window, it's hard to believe I had to postpone my first hard run this week because of snow. I was pretty happy with the workout - but, the postponement left a few days less to recover before today. Brennan and I headed out to the town where arms & equipment were procured for the original bromance.

I had the "great" idea of running the tempo sections on the C&O canal path and the easy 10 mile section on the Appalachian trail. Well, I'm convinced that the mile markers on the C&O are a little long. There's no way I was running close to 6 minute miles given how hard I was running. And I expected tough going on the Appalachian trail - but, not nearly the ankle breaking sharp rocks that we experienced. We ran ~6 miles in 50 minutes - and that might have been generous. There were some great views - but, it was hard to appreciate since we were afraid to look up from the treachorous footing.

All of that blabbering is the long way of saying that the workout didn't go very well today. My tempo splits were way off - and I ended up cutting a couple miles off the run. No rest for the wicked this week - it's my last week over 90 miles. I only have one workout with tempo, but it's a doozy.

Yes, I know what you're thinking - "could the bad workout be from overtraining?" - well, I'm pushing myself more than ever before - so, it's possible. But, I'm not going to worry too much unless Tuesday doesn't go well. I'm giving myself a pseudo day off tomorrow - so, I should be recovered enough - and if not, I can push the workout to Wednesday.

Last week

Monday: 7 miles
Tuesday morning: 5.5 miles
Tuesday evening: 12 miles
Wednesday: 14 miles
Thursday morning: 4 miles
Thursday evening: 12 miles 8X1mi (5:32;5:48;5:37;5:30;5:33;5:24; 5:20;5:19) 30-40 sec rest 2 mi warmup & warmdown
Friday morning: 4 mi
Friday evening: 8.5 mi hills
Saturday: 10 miles 8X100m
Sunday: 19 miles 2 easy 2X2mi at (5:38;5:58) (5:48;5:59) (2 min rest) 9 mi easy 2mi @(5:44;5:35) 2mi easy
Total: 96 miles

This week

Monday: 5.5 miles
Tuesday morning: 16 mi 2X(3 mi easy 4mi T pace) 2 mi easy
Tuesday evening: 4 miles
Wednesday: 15 miles
Thursday: 10 miles 8X100m
Friday: 12 mi hills
Saturday: 8.5 miles
Sunday: 22 miles
Total: 93 miles

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Meditation & Running

Before I moved to Baltimore I used to meditate fairly regularly. My uncle is an alumnus of Naropa University - a college in Boulder, CO that was started by the founder of Shambhala International, Chogyam Trungpa. One of his profs was Allen Ginsburg. Anyways my uncle led a weekly meditation group in Ann Arbor - and so I got into it. It was such a part of my life that my uncle officiated our wedding.

It seems most people think that meditation is about letting your mind go blank. It's actually about focusing your mind on your immediate surroundings and your body - instead of the incessant flow of thoughts through your brain about the past or the future. It's about quieting the mind - not shutting it down. The concentration should be on the breath and one's posture. This concentration on the simple task of breathing and sitting is supposed to allow you to become more open to what is actually occurring around you - to stop applying your own schemas on everything around you and just observe them for what they are - without judgement.

So, what does this have to do with running? Well, the last few days have been pretty intense for me from a work perspective. And yesterday was just plain tiring - it was about 15 hours from the time I left my hotel room for a run yesterday morning until I got home to Baltimore. And there was no real mental break - unless driving counts.

I started my run tonight completely distracted. I was on my own and supposed to run 8X1 mi with only 30-40 seconds rest. My first mile wasn't too bad - but, my second mile was about 15 seconds slow. My mind was somewhere else. So, instead of panicking, I focused on relaxing my breathing, relaxing the muscles of my face, relaxing my shoulders, driving my knees, shortening my stride, keeping my arm carriage relaxed and controlled etc . . . I've found if I keep cycling through all these in my head - it's actually enough to occupy my mind and presto my splits drop. My last two were my fastest - almost 30 seconds faster than my second repeat.

When I'm in a race my thoughts expand to the runners around me - I pay attention to see if anyone is about to surge - who's struggling - who is strong - or if I'm alone, who can I work on catching ahead of me. It's not exactly mystical - it's just about focusing on the task at hand - which at times can be more important than anything in my performance. My time meditating has helped me to improve my running and get more out of it.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Phase 4: week 3 of 5

Well - I guess a celebration is in order - I ran my highest mileage week total ever this week. Best of all - my legs feel good. I ran a full marathon today - yes, I know that sounds crazy - but, I had a 24 miler scheduled - there was a local marathon (B&A trail) - so, I thought, what's two extra miles? Luckily some other guys who wanted a long run came along for most of it, which made it much easier mentally.

We started out in the first mile in almost exactly 7 minutes - from there we gradually got faster, until we were running almost 6:30 pace at the half-way mark. Although not every mile was faster then the last - we did get to about 6:20 pace by the 19th mile. My plan was to push the last 10k - which I ended up running in 38:38 (~6:14 pace). My total time was 2:52:20 - although my chip fell off on the trail (i'm not sure how) - so, I didn't get an official time. I'm happiest because my legs feel pretty good - we'll see how this week goes - but, I'm feeling pretty confident right now.

This week includes a little dip in mileage - the question will be how the weather and my travel schedule at the beginning of the week will affect my mileage. We're supposed to get 8 inches of snow tonight and I have to drive to NJ tomorrow for work.

Last Week
Monday morning: 4 miles
Monday evening: 9 miles
Tuesday morning: 5 miles
Tuesday evening: 13 mi 2 mi warmup 2X3mi at T pace (5:21.8+5:33.9+5:32.3=16:28;5:28.7+5:31.6+5:27=16:27) 2mi @ T pace (5:17.9+5:29.9=10:48) 3 min rest between all 3 mi warmdown
Wednesday: 15 miles
Thursday: 10 miles
Friday morning: 6 miles
Friday evening: 12 mi hills
Saturday: 10 miles
Sunday: 26 miles
Total: 110 miles

This Week
Monday: 7.5 miles
Tuesday morning: 15 miles 8X1 mi @ T pace 30 sec rest
Tuesday evening: 4 miles
Wednesday: 14 miles
Thursday: 8.5 miles
Friday morning: 4 miles
Friday evening: 12 mi hills
Saturday: 10 miles 8X100m
Sunday: 21 miles 2 mi easy 2X2 mi @ T pace (2 min rest) 10 mi easy 3mi @ T pace 2mi easy
Total: 96 miles