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.