Sunday, February 28, 2010

Summit Attempt

I am now in the final three weeks of my training for the marathon. With my last long run out of the way today (more on that in a moment) I am left with 3 speed sessions, 1 race, and a bunch of maintenance miles. It will be good to pull the miles back while maintaining the intensity of speed.

I "participated" in the Last Chance for Boston marathon in Columbus today. The goal was to work my 22 mile workout within the 26.2 mile event. If the conditions were perfect I would run the extra 4 miles and finish the race. If not...I would decide the distance on my own terms. I hit the segments of the 22 mile run faster than planned and felt great. I tacked on 2 more then called it a day.

I am 46 years old. I am trying to hit a Personal Record (PR) for the marathon distance. This is not an easy thing to do at my age. The window of running these things relatively fast is closing quickly. I have approached my training a little like a mountain climber trying to reach the summit. It takes days and weeks to move from base camp up the mountain. Each camp along the route is established. Days are spent acclimating to the environment before moving up closer to the top. If all goes well and the conditions are right...the successful climber will reach the summit after a few attempts. Reaching the summit doesn't always happen. Climbers have turned away literally tens of yards from the top due to unfavorable conditions, smartly retreating for another summit attempt on another day.

My run in Columbus today was like that. I stopped with two miles to go. I had accomplished what I came down to do and did not get greedy by going for it. I am saving that for Washington DC. Could I have pushed it? Sure. Would it jeopardize the National Marathon. Yes. As one of my good friends always tells me..."plan your work then work your plan". So far so good.

Training Week March 1st to 7th
Mon: Cross training. No running.
Tue: Kent State Track - 4 x 1200 meters
Wed: 13 group miles
Thu: 8 easy miles
Fri: 4 miles with striders
Sat: 4 miles with striders
Sun: Shamrock 15K race


Sunday, February 21, 2010

4 weeks to go

I am now inside of 4 weeks before the marathon. I actually feel really good about my progress and where things stand right now. I have my final 22 miler this Sunday. I had considered wrapping it inside of the Last Chance for Boston marathon in Columbus....but with a crazy $85 price tag (you get a high quality $4 shirt) I will just go solo again.

The Shamrock 15K will be the only race I run. I am pretty sure I am past my course PR days...but I hope to run the most complete race I have ever run there.

We had a nice club get together on Saturday. I am a little bummed that the club (and I) didn't take the opportunity to thank everyone who attended, promote our club by using all of the blank LCD's hanging on the wall, or at least make a few announcements and pass out race applications. Captive audiences are rare and you really have to take advantage when you can. Enough said.

Training Schedule 2/22 to 2/28
Mon: either off day or something easy
Tue: Repeats at Kent - 3 x 1 mile, 3 x 1000 meters, and 3 x 400 meters. All intense.
Wed: 13 group miles
Thu: 9 miles
Fri: 8 miles
Sat: 8 to 12 miles
Sun: 22 miles with 2 warm up + 4 marathon pace + 10 easy/medium + 4 marathon pace + 2 cool down

Total = 76 miles

Friday will also be Maddie's 12th birthday. She is having a sleep over once again not much sleep that night.


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Enough is Enough

Winter please be over. There is a growing rumble within the running community that happens almost exactly at the same time each year. The drudgery of Winter running seems to reach it's peak around mid-February. I know that I am really tired of running in multiple layers of clothes in the dark. I am tired of wearing the same basic clothes each day. I am tired of doing the additional laundry necessary to keep the stink to a minimum.

I have tried to mix it up a bit by hitting the Kent State track on Tuesday nights. I have also done a few treadmill workouts. These are all temporary actions to avoid the simple truth that Winter running is a drag.

My only race prior to the National Marathon will be the Shamrock 15K - hosted by the Summit Athletic Running Club. It is a tough tough course where times really skewed because of the hills. I am looking to run close to my best time there. I won't be as fast in the beginning downhill sections, but I hope my hill strength can even things out a bit.

Here is my schedule for the current week. Things are going well.

Mon: 4 easy
Tue: 9 miles with 6 x 1000 meter repeats + strides
Wed: 13 miles
Thu: 9 miles
Fri: 3 easy miles
Sat: 13 miles
Sun: 24 miles with 6 easy/6 marathon pace/1 tempo/6 marathon pace/1 tempo/ 4 easy


Sunday, February 7, 2010

Training 02/08 to 02/14

A solid week of training behind me. 77 more miles in the bank. I had two confidence boost workouts this past week. Tuesday I was able to hit my marks with 3x1 mile repeats - 3x1000 meter repeats - 3x400 meter repeats. All good numbers. Sunday called for a 22 miler with 4 mile pace work at the beginning and end. The pace for those segments hovered around 6:10 for each with the final sub 6. I felt pretty fresh most of the way. It will be good to get out of the Winter gear for some of these runs.

Weekly Schedule
Mon: 5 miles easy
Tue: 2mE+4x(5minT+5minE+4minT+4minE+3minT+3minE+2minT+2minE)+2mi
Wed: 13 group run
Thu: 8 miles
Fri: 10 miles
Sat: 2mE+4mMP+10mE+4mMP+2mE
Sun: 12 miles
Total = 87


Monday, February 1, 2010

Training Boost

National Marathon
I received an email today indicating that I will be placed in the elite group for the National Marathon in Washington DC on March 20th. This means that I will be given a low race number and will have access to the front of the starting area. During the online registration process I submitted my expected finish time (an honest estimate), and based on the results over the last few years my time predicts that I should be competing for the top 3 Masters spots. I really appreciated the gesture and will use it as a boost to my training and commitment to the race.

My friend Al let me borrow a book called "The Competitive Edge" by Richard Elliott. I have read several books that address the mental approach of racing, but this book is the first to really strike a chord with me. It contains a few gems that I will begin using in preparation for the marathon.

Workout Schedule
Mon: 8 easy
Tue: AM 4 easy. PM 2 mile warm up + 3x1 miles with 3 min recovery + 3x1000 meters with 2 min recovery + 3x400 meters with 1 min recovery + 2 mile cool down
Wed: 13 group run miles

Thu: 10 miles
Fri: 10 miles + striders
Sat: 5 miles easy
Sun: 2 miles easy + 4 miles tempo + 10 miles easy + 4 miles tempo + 2 miles easy

Chaney Event Management
I have added a few more races to the schedule and look to be busy this Summer. Next up is the Chase Your Shadow 5K....a new race in Portage Lakes State Park.


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