Saturday, October 27, 2007

Weeks 40 & 41

3 runs week 40 (4.5/4.5/26.2) - 35.2
3 runs week 41 (5/7.75/10.8) - 23.55

This week was a recovery/test my recovery week. By that I mean on Friday I did a 5k tempo section during my 7.75 mile run. It was to set a benchmark time to gauge my recovery. The plan was not to kill myself, but to try and go fairly swiftly. The course is rolling on cinder trail with multiple street crossings. I finished in 20:12. I'll do this once a week to see how my pace comes back.

I plan to race a 10 miler in 2 weeks and then a 5 miler on Thanksgiving. No goals set yet.

Runs: 110
Mileage: 58.75
YTD Mileage: 784.20

Saturday, October 20, 2007

I came home on it! (updated)

I managed goal 3, break 3hrs. In retrospect that's all I should have tried to do. 7 weeks ago I had no running form. It's a tall order to get into your best marathon shape in just 6 weeks of real prep.

First it was really humid today, not my best conditions. Then I went out hard, too hard. I stayed fast for a while, hitting the 1/2 around 1:28. I know I had a few good long runs, and not surprisingly I was good today...right to 18 miles which is the length of my long runs. Unfortunately the marathon has another 8.2 miles on it. Though starting to struggle I held it together for another couple of miles. However the biggest hill on the course (which doesn't really seem that big during mile 9 of a training run, but seemed huge at mile 21) took me apart. I never really go it going after again. I only dipped below 7 minutes per mile once after mile 21, and that was a 6:58. Despite losing all supporting muscle control (head falling back being the most notable problem), I managed to string together 7:00-7:05 miles to limit the damage. A 7:30 25th mile seemed to go forever (it had a sharp hill by St. George's school), and then it was downhill to the finish. 8:30 after the painful climb, head rolling to the back and side, I was finally done. 2:59:47, good for 3rd in men aged 40-49, actually 4th if you include the guy in the open division who finished 3rd overall. He was 47 or 48. The race director, however, put him the open division results, which I'm sure he wanted because there was money at stake.

Results Page

Come home with your shield or upon it.

Breakers Marathon, Newport RI. It's raining cats and dogs now, but the radar looks promising for the 8:00am start. Frankly I don't mind if the rain continues. I've got a lot of experience racing in rain.

I'll admit to being nervous. I'm trying to go fast today...and that makes me nervous. The strategy is to pace for a PR, meaning going out in 1:28 or 1:29...and that makes me nervous. Going out in 1:28 still does not guarantee my top goal so I will have to crush the last 7.5k or so (after the one long climb of the day). If I'm off form today, it will be a long painful slog. If I'm on form today, it just won't be a slog, but it's going to hurt.

Fortunately I know every inch of this course and I will be seeing Leanna and Alexandra once or twice. Given that this is a small local race without a ton of on course support (aid stations are 3 miles apart), I'm carrying my own go-fast juice from Infinit. Leanna will given me a reload at mile 15. I just have to keep from being stupid and I'll be fine. My 18 milers have been encouraging, and I think my legs are pretty good right now. Not too tired, but not stale. I'm curious to see if my pre-race workout routine proves successful.

So here are the 3 goals:
1) Challenge 2:55
2) Break 2:58:11
3) Break 3 hours

As you can see the plan is to be aggressive. There's no "just finishing" here.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

This is where I live

The following photo of 2nd and 3rd beach (1.5 miles from my house), was taken by local photographer Onne van der Wal. It pretty much sums up why I live here. Onne swims with the same open water swimming group that I do. These are the waters where we swim.

Double Barrel Meltdown

It was just a matter of time. Last night we were out at dinner following a trip to see friends at a local pumpkin exhibit/nature walk. Everyone was tired, the restaurant was crowded and noisy (unusually crowded in downtown Newport for October), and the food was taking just a wee bit too long to arrive. "Momma...I NEED MOMMA!!" First from Dylan and then Alexandra, and neither accepting anyone but Leanna. All eyes turned to our table. Most looks were of the "We've been there" variety. So when the food arrived (2 minutes later), it was pack it all in doggie boxes and take it home.

Oh well. I keep thinking I should have been more embarassed/upset than I was, but I was actually okay. That's what kids do.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Week 39: One week to go

I've been resting this week, and ironically have had a higher mileage week. I'm finding it really is about the amount of intensity and not so much the mileage. Runs of 12, 5, 4.5 and 18 but only one mile fast (a 5:39).

One week to the marathon. I'm following the same final build-up as I did for Boston 2006. The only concern is will my new shipment from Infinit Nutrition get here in time. I'm almost out and I doubt there will be really great on course support in a race this small.

**Update**
The final 18 miler was quite satisfactory. I set out to run 2:03-2:04, and despite taking a slightly longer route back home (by about .1 miles) so I could survey more of the race course, I cruised in with a nice finishing kick in 2:03:51. I'm also clear on how I'm going to run the race tactically. The first 1/2 of the course is really fast so I may well be letting quite a few people go. When the second 1/2 gets more challenging, I will bring them all back.

Runs: 104
Mileage: 39.5
YTD Mileage: 725.45

Monday, October 08, 2007

Week 38

3 runs. 20.25 miles. A bit of hard running. First run was hard tempo running with a anonymous person who apparently wanted to run hard as well. Next day was repeats of 4 minutes on, 2 minutes off. Third day was 4.5 miles with mile 2.5 - 3.5 at hard tempo (5:52 mile). I was pretty gassed from the two previous days, so I was happy with anything under 6 minutes.

3.5 days off followed. I did run today (week 39). A little flat. Most of the miles were 8 minute miles, though I went mid 6's when I tried to run fast. Well see how the week progresses.

Runs: 100
Mileage: 20.25
YTD Mileage: 685.95