Monday, February 16, 2009

Halfway to Boston

This past week was #9 of my Boston training, marking the halfway point. Only 9 weeks until April 20th!! It seems so far, yet much too close. The week went great for the most part, but was soured some by a crappy marathon pace long run on Sunday. It was just the wrong day to have a bad day.

Monday - 10 miles in the morning, 5 in the afternoon.

Tuesday - 10 miles. Thanks to Mother Nature dumping a few inches of wet snow on Monday night, which first turned to slush and then froze, the footing was pretty shitty on Tuesday morning. Regardless, I headed out only to decide real quick that that was a mistake. After 5 miles of basically just trying not to fall on my ass, I gave up, shed my cold weather gear and headed to the indoor track for the second 5.

Wednesday - 9.2 miles with 8 strides.

Thursday - 11 total including 2 easy, 20 minutes tempo, 3 min. easy, 15 min. tempo, 3 min. easy, 10 min. tempo and a little over a mile easy for a cooldown. Definitely the best run of the week. Ironic, because it was also the one I was dreading the most, but the tempo intervals went very well and I nailed my goal pace of 6:30-6:35. I think that tempo workouts like this are the key to achieving the fabled "runner's high". During that last cooldown mile, I felt like I was running about 9:00 pace, but was actually going 8:00 with no effort whatsoever. And, when I got done, I felt like I had just shotgunned a 6 pack of beer in about 5 minutes.

Friday - 10.2 miles. I meant to do another 4 in the afternoon, but our dryer took a crap on us and I ended up getting sidetracked by tearing it apart before I finally realized that I'm not an appliance repairman and no matter how many pieces of it I took off, I wasn't going to magically fix whatever it is that's broken.

Saturday - 8.2 miles with 8 strides in the morning, finally got around to that other 4 miler (4.4 actually) in the afternoon. Took the dogs with me on the afternoon run for a couple of miles each.

Sunday - 17 miles with 12 at marathon pace. This was supposed to be 13 miles at goal marathon pace, but it just wasn't happening. After a two mile warmup, I started in on the MP miles and it just wasn't working out from the beginning. I was targeting 7:00 miles and when my first, mostly downhill mile was a 7:05 I knew it was going to be rough. My legs just felt dead and the pace never felt even remotely comfortable. To make matters worse, I purposefully ran it on a fairly hilly course because Boston is hilly and running MP on a flat course isn't going to do me much good come April 20th. By the time I finished 7 MP miles (9 miles total) I had slowed to about 7:15 and my legs were burning. I decided to take it easy for a mile to regroup and then started in on another 5 MP miles, which went slightly better, although my pace still fluctuated wildly; I laid down a 7:20 one mile, but then hammered out a 6:59 on the last one. After a couple of miles of cooldown, I was done (both figuratively and literally). I haven't had a long run, or any run for that matter, leave me feeling that beat up in awhile.

Total - 85 miles

So, I'm down to single digit weeks until the big day. And, considering the three week taper, I really only have about 6 weeks of "hard" training left. Yikes.


jen said...

Great week Chris! I love the tempo run with the always-elusive runner's high... that is the best. It is really essential to get one of those runs every once in a while to keep your head in the game. Great MP run too! Keep it up!

side note: It's going to be hard for me to hear all this Boston talk since I'm not going this year... I'm such a baby! You better enjoy it double for both of us!! :) I have no doubt that you will.

johnmaas said...

It sounds like your training is still going very well.
The mileage you consistently run is incredible.
You will do well in Boston.
I will not be running it this year, but instead will be cheering you on from afar.
Stay healthy in the next 9 weeks!