After running 23.66 miles last Sunday (which followed an 18.4 mile run on Saturday), I figured it was about time to start tapering for the Missoula Marathon, which is quickly sneaking up on me. Missoula similarly snuck up on me last year, but my last two weeks of preparation resulted in a BQ there, so I decided to look back at my running log from last year and emulate those final two weeks. I'm not doing the exact same workouts, but pretty close.
Monday - Rest. Played basketball at lunchtime.
Tuesday - 8.66 miles.
Wednesday - 8.2 miles, including 6x800m intervals. Only my second real speed workout since Boston and it went better than the first. I averaged 3:04 per interval. A "true" Yasso 800 workout would have been 8 to 10 intervals, but in the spirit of tapering I kept the number lower. For those that are unfamiliar, famous runner and coach Bart Yasso (who, coincidentally, I drank a couple of beers with at the Sheraton lobby bar in Boston the night after the marathon) came up with the concept of this workout, hence the name Yasso 800s. The idea is that you warm up, then run 8 to 10x800m intervals at a pace that's hard but that you can maintain for all of the intervals. In between each one, you jog rest for the same amount of time it took you to run the 800. He believes that this workout is a good predictor for how fast you can run a marathon. For example, if you averaged 3 minutes for the intervals, that would predict that you could run a 3 hour marathon. Hopefully, he's right (even though I didn't do the full workout). Oh, and I played basketball at lunchtime again. My legs felt surprisingly good considering the speedwork I'd done in the morning.
Thursday - 6 miles. Ran this one in Spearfish while our car was at Wal-Mart getting new tires mounted. When I got done, the car still wasn't ready, so I got to walk around Wal-Mart all sweaty and stinky. In other words, I fit right in (except for the fact that I have all my teeth and I didn't have 10 screaming kids with me).
Friday - 5.2 miles. The blasted humidity in the morning is really bugging me. It's generally pretty cool (50s, maybe barely cracking 60), but with the humidity in the 80s or 90s, I still come home with a totally drenched shirt.
Saturday - 8.2 miles total including 2 miles of warmup and the Roundup 10K. My arbitrary goal for this race was to run it faster than I ran it last year (40:42). I ended up running it in 40:42. Seriously. I don't think I could do that again if I tried. It rained right before the race and then the sun burned off all the clouds, so when the race started it was bright, sunny and right at 100% humidity. So, given the conditions, that's actually not a bad time for me, especially considering my recent lack of speedwork. I finished 6th overall and 1st in my age group.
Sunday - 14.1 miles. My last "long" run before Missoula. I actually felt pretty good after Saturday's 10K.
Total - 50.36 miles
So, next up is the third annual Missoula Marathon. Last year I was secretive about my goals for this race and then busted out a PR and Boston qualifier of 3:09:41. I'm not purposefully being secretive this year, I just really don't know for certain right now. Based on the fact that I once again ran a 40:42 at Roundup the week before Missoula, I guess I'm probably in shape to run a 3:09:41 at Missoula. Truth be told, I'd like to run faster than that, like in the 3:05-3:06 range (hell, I'd like to run sub-3, but that's just not realistic right now). Basically, if the weather conditions are favorable, I'll go for the PR and see what happens. If not, I'll treat it like a training run and just take it easy. Honestly, I won't know which option I'm choosing for absolute certain until I get to the start line in Frenchtown on Sunday morning. So you all will just have to wait. Don't let the suspense kill ya....