Saturday, March 24, 2007

Still in one piece

The current Boston training cycle is nearly complete (not counting the taper) so perhaps it's time to tally up a bit. I'm 'still in one piece' with no real injuries or issues to speak of. My achilles soreness is long gone, there's an occasional sore side mainly due to a lack of stretching and ab work, and the knees and feet are fine. My weight is good, down from 166 to 161, which is where I'm usually at by early April. Stress wise, it's mostly due to a hectic work life lately that can be a bother but I'm doing my best to ignore it and not bring stuff home at night.

Here's what the weekly and long run mileage looks like since the Wineglass marathon in Oct. The weekly mileage is about 5-10 less than last year but the consistent series of long runs (due mostly to the Andrew influence) is something new this cycle. It amounts to 18x20+ mile runs since November and so at least that part of the training is covered off.

Training to finish off the week went 'ok'

Thurs - easy paced 8 mile recovery run after the good set of 800's on Weds. I felt tight and stiff at 1st but then smoothed out as the run went on. Pace was better (ie slower) around 8:20. I also got my number for Boston #6678, which in case you don't know puts me in the 6th corral as they order the runners by their qualifying times in corrals of 1000 runners. I was hoping to see the 5th corral for the 1st time with my hot new PB but it was not to be.

Friday - I think there is an affliction going around that prevents you from running at your prescribed marathon pace. Eric had it, and then Michael caught it, and even Run Faster-Marc had some difficulties and now it's here in Canada! For some reason it makes you crazy and unable to run at a moderately hard pace without getting totally out of control and the result is a real struggle towards the end of your marathon pace workout.

("Where is he going with this?" - Andrew is asking)

The modified plan workout was 2hr or about 15 miles with 3x3mi at marathon pace with 1mile recoveries. This is down from the original optimistic version of 15 with 12xMP that I'd written down in a fit of madness back in January. I came up with the revision after seeing Marc's run and thinking, "that's a more doable run", little did I know... Perfect sunny day, 10C (50F) with a medium nw wind 10-15mph, easy one mile warmup and off to the 'races'.

Mile one: 6:50! Idiot! you're going to pay for this!
Mile 2: 6:55, dummy, feeling the burn yet?
3 mile avg: 7:01 which is about 15 sec/mile too fast. I told you it was catching.

After an easy 1 mile recovery it was a return loop along the same course in reverse which was mostly flat but had a long stretch into the wind at the end. No splits for the 2nd 3 mile run but the average pace was again too fast at 7:08 and it was hard work and concentration for the entire way. If I ran and effort like this on race day I'd be lucky to get past the 1/2 way point.

Another easy 1 mile jog and the final loop was more of the same, too fast, too hard, no rhythm, and average pace 7:08. It's 'supposed' to feel moderately hard, almost easy, smooth, gliding, floating but not today. I'll be praying for the usual race day magic. Finished the 15 miles in 1:57 and rewarded myself with a nice Amber Red.

Today, Saturday was just an easy 7.5 miles to finish off the week at 68 miles. The plan went very well as I managed to get in 100% of the planned runs for the week. My Parrot predictor now tells me I'm at 3:12 which is the lowest yet and getting close to the target. Now it's time to rest up for the long run with Andrew in the morning. Now does anyone know where to get 'brown bread with Guinness' ice cream? Thomas??

Have a nice weekend.


Andrew said...

So what you ran was a tempo run. No harm done there. Great job. Come Boston, you'll have to slow it down to hit 7:15. Slowing down in the beginning miles is always a good idea anyway.

Phil said...

Still a great of work outs. You'll kick some serious butt at Boston. You're still the fastest guy over 50 I know!

Thomas said...

Happy to oblige. We found said flavour in Murphy's ice cream shop in Killarney, and they have another one in Dingle as well, so come over here and have a sample. I was going to mention that they have a website, and that the owner has a very entertaining blog, but I can see you found them without my help. He even published the recipe, how cool is that? [see what I did there? ice cream and cool in one sentence? Ok, Thomas, shut up.]

Mark Bell said...

Andrew is right, and it may help to start mentally preparing now for slow down miles at the start. Corral six means there will be allot of positioning going on susceptible to precious energy loss if caught up in it.

That's an impressive string of 20-milers. In a previous Boston another runner, 20-miler every weekend, paced with me for 16 miles and then buried me at the cemetary after I had speedily ran the Newton hills without him.

Jamie Anderson said...

I learned my lesson about going too fast! Hee hee. Hey man, Boston is right around the corner. You're going to do fantastic. Looking forward to reading the race report (as well as your training leading up to it).

UMaine Cooperative Extension said...

Still in one piece. A very strong piece indeed.

Brown bread with Guiness ice cream? Are you sure you want to find this stuff? Sounds about as appealing as the lobster ice cream they were selling in Bar Harbor a few years ago.

Olga said...

I don't know, may be I should employ Andrew too...I love your pace! Good luck with taper!

DawnB said...

doing great Mike you're driving youself crazy with those predicted time. Guy you are so going to kick butt. You've put in the work!! the rewards will be forth coming!!!