Monday, October 24, 2016

Five (5!) Weeks until CIM

Should I recap my previous week or lay out my plans for this week? Both? Okay, let's do it. Last week was {on paper} the 12th week of training for CIM. Although with one taper week and two recovery weeks for St. George, my training has not been continuous. 

After two lower mileage weeks, I was ready to jump right back into marathon training. I'm following Pfitzinger's Advanced Marathoning plan for running two marathons 8 or 10 weeks apart (St. George and CIM are 9 weeks apart). 

CIM Training Week 12 Recap:

  • Monday, 10/17 - Rest or XT day. I ran a easy 1 mile warm-up before a cycle class and weight-lifting.
  • Tuesday, 10/18 - 9.0 miles, general aerobic run . Back to mid-week longish runs. I love these runs. These runs make me a stronger runner. Consistency and increasing mileage are key. They almost make waking up at 4:20 am worth it. I kept the pace slow & steady and I felt strong all the way to the end (or coffee, which really is the end). 9:48/mile average pace.
  • Wednesday, 10/19 - 5.0 miles, recovery run. This run felt super hard and both my legs and mind were very tired. How will I ever be able to run a marathon in a few weeks? was a constant thought during my run. In th evening, I saw my sports physical therapist for my monthly run-specific power, balance and strength conditioning. 10:01/mile average
  • Thursday, 10/20 - 9.6 miles with speed (8 x 100 meters). My legs were not feeling this run. I was able to run my sprints at a good pace, but the rest of the miles nope. My legs were not cooperating-which is the norm when I have PT the night before. 9:29/mile average
  • Friday, 10/21 - Rest or XT day. Fridays always start with a 30 minute tabata style class and since I had the day off from work I also took a pilates class and a TRX class. I also had an appointment with my sports chiropractor for ART. 
  • Saturday, 10/22 - 13.1 miles, long run. I was nervous about this run because it was my longest run since St. George and I was running it in a new location with out a specific route. Also, with the way my legs had been feeling earlier in the week, I wasn't sure my legs could handle the distance. It turns out, I had nothing to be worried about. The run went great and I felt strong throughout. Also, I ran it in 1:59:39. When I run 13.1 miles I always challenge myself to run it in less than 2 hours. 9:08/mile average. 
  • Sunday, 10/23 - 4.3 miles, recovery run. Super fun Oiselle Volée gtg at Green Flash Brewery for Hoppy Yoga (yoga + beer). A group of us met early to get a short run in before getting bendy. My legs felt great and I was able to get some speed. 9:01/mile average.
Total Mileage: 42. 1 miles

Week 13 (or the week it gets serious again):
  • Monday, 10/24 - Rest or XT
  • Tuesday, 10/25 - 12 miles, general aerobic run
  • Wednesday, 10/26 - 5 miles, recovery run
  • Thursday, 10/27 - 9 miles with 5 miles tempo run
  • Friday, 10/28 - 4 miles, recovery run
  • Saturday, 10/29 - 8 miles with speed (10 x 100 meters)
  • Sunday, 10/30 - 17 miles, long run
Goal Mileage: 55 miles

Friday, October 14, 2016

St. George Marathon + Recovery

Good News: Marathons are not my nemesis distance anymore. They are still bloody hard and I will still like to train for and run a strong marathon. 

Great News: I ran my fastest marathon by almost 32 minutes, ran a sub-4 hour marathon AND I qualified for the 2018 Boston Marathon. 

It's taken me a while to write this post because I still have mixed emotions about the St. George Marathon which I ran on October 1st. My original purpose for running it was to use it as a training run for CIM which is my goal race and I ended up accidentally BQing. And this is why I have mixed emotions.  

I'm not 45 yet, but will be by April 16, 2018

About 3 weeks before St. George, I realized I aged into a new category to qualify for Boston Marathon and the qualifying standard was something that was definitely achievable based on my ability and fitness. My previous marathon PR was not indicative of my fitness. It was a bad race. 

Anyway, I went into St. George under-trained. I only completed 9 weeks of training for CIM at that point (with one week taper for St. George). I only had one 20 mile long run (2 weeks prior), one 16 mile, and maybe a couple of 15 miles. That was it for my long runs. 

The St. George course is a net downhill course but in actuality it is mostly rolling hills and some very long steep uphills (I drove the course the day before, which helped me decide my strategy). My strategy was to not push myself the first half, take it easy going up the hills and to save myself for the 2nd half. I'm a great downhill runner, so I knew I could be speedy without pushing myself. It was a great strategy which worked until about 18 miles where my legs said they had enough. That this was the distance they had trained for. (My average pace for the first 30k was 8:28/mile and my average pace for the last 12k was 9:30/mile). 

It was hard. I struggled. Yet, it almost feels like it was too easy to BQ. It wasn't something I had to work and train for months/years. It wasn't something I attempted to do and fail multiple times before accomplishing it. So, I feel guilty. Many of my running friends work on this goal for months if not years, hire coaches and race their hearts out multiple times before BQing. All I did was get old(er). Hmmm. 

My previous BQ standard of 3:45 would be a struggle and is not within my current fitness and ability. Maybe that should be my BHAG goal?

Anyway, I'm using 2 weeks to recover from St. George and will hop back into training for CIM next week. My legs feel great and my current 'A' goal for CIM is 3:50 and my 'B' goal is to PR and my 'C' goal is to finish and have fun. 

(Yikes! 51 days until CIM...)