Tuesday, September 28, 2010

2 Weeks Left

Last week was a decent, but lower mileage week as The Chicago Marathon is on the horizon. Only two main workouts last week. One was a track workout in that miserable monsoon, and the other was a hard long run which consisted of a 2.5 mile warm up from my house to the river and to the first mile mark by Central Ave. We would start at about 6:00 minute pace and work down towards 5:40 or so in the next 16 miles and cool down about 2.5 miles back to the house, finishing off the day with 21 miles. Well, the first mile of this hard effort was 6:00 minutes, the next few were around 5:50 ish, then we started dropping down towards 5:30 and a few 5:24's here and there. With three miles to go, I backed off from the burning pace and came in at a comfortable 5:30 pace for the last 3 miles.

The overall run was great and the effort really shows how good of a shape we are in. Also, Kris and Jae Young were among the culprits of the quick pace, as Ben Fletcher and I backed off. I also decided to run the workout in my Brooks T6 racers, so I could get use to the pounding of the pavement with little foam, since these racers are all but finished as they've held together for a marathon, a half marathon, a full season of track workouts and a couple of longer tempo runs and finally this harder long run.

Chicago here I come.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Chips and Salsa Half Marathon to Chicago Marathon

Another thing to add from last week was the Chips and Salsa Half marathon we have here in Albuquerque. This was last sunday, and the point of it was to run about marathon pace or faster up here at altitude. The course is flat with a bunch of turns, but it actually is a nice course. There were two Moroccans being paced on a bike, me, Kris and John. My lovely girlfriend; Laura, was going to pace us on a bike as well. So after blitzing the first mile in 5:02, I make a wrong turn and have to turn around. Once back on track, everyone in the top five makes another wrong turn which ends up being a 210 meter diversion. After that little mishap, everyone is back on course and back on pace. I clicked off a few solid miles, while staying as comfortable as possible and taking in water and gatorade along the way. At this point I am in 3rd place and am not able to gain much ground on the two Moroccans. I ended up finishing in 3rd place with a time of 1:09:34 with the 210 meter diversion.

After that effort, I feel pretty good about going into Chicago. That effort, with some rest before the marathon should prove to be a great day in a few weeks. I'm also excited to be in a huge group of guys going for that Olympic Trials time, as well as being in a big city marathon with a ton of spectators. Basically, this marathon is going to be like the Olympic Trials, since there are going to be a bunch of Americans in that field. And finally, this will be my first Major Marathon.

Rain Workout

Last night at 6:30pm on one of the local high schools tracks (La Cueva H.S.) A group of us met there to do our track workout instead of in the morning, due to schedule complications. It seemed fine at the time, but being the first day of fall, mother nature decided to remind us that summer was officially over with a constant cool downpour. During the warm up for our 6x 2000m, I thought the rain would subside, and all we'd have to deal with would be the lack of sunlight. In reality, we just dealt with the combination of the two. Once we hit our splits and switched off leads every kilometer between the four of us, it wasn't so bad. I felt like I was in a time warp, as nothing around me seemed to be moving. The lakes that formed on the track made each step filled with extra cushion, but of course, no traction as we hydroplaned with each landing.

It was a great experience and I'm glad we completed the entire workout in those conditions. As the quote states, "whatever doesn't kill you, only makes you stronger.". With that said, the 2k's with 200m jog went well as we planned on hitting marathon pace or close to marathon pace. My Brooks T6 racers felt great out there, and I got them cleaned in the process.

[6:34, 6:32, 6:32, 6:33, 6:35, 6:28]

Monday, September 20, 2010

High Mileage

Last week was an all time high for mileage. I hit 141 miles for the week with two solid workouts and a long 40k run to finish out the week. This was planned of course, and was the peak mileage for this marathon cycle. The following week (this past), was a race week with little tapering and resting. I ran a half marathon here in Albuquerque at altitude and ran it as a marathon specific workout. It went really well and I hit my splits dead on. I fell off a little bit at the end, but that could have been because of the fast miles at the beginning, and a slight deviation that occurred in the race.

Getting lost in an Albuquerque road race is quite common since many races aren't that marked or marshaled correctly. But, either way it was a great effort and I was pleased with the outcome. We basically made a 210 meter detour which costed about 40 seconds in the race, with a steeple barrier. The 2010 Chips and Salsa half marathon, was still a great event and I was pleased to push hard in those conditions. My splits are: [5:02, 5:15, ???, ???, 5:11, 5:10, 5:20, 5:08, 5:10, 5:21, 5:23, 5:26, 5:17, ???]. So I was pleased. Chicago is looking good at this point.

Mileage break down:

9/6 - 9/12
Mon - 10 easy
Tue - am track workout 12x 1000m. 14 miles
pm easy 8 miles.
Wed - am easy 10 miles
pm easy 12 miles
Thur - am easy 14 miles
pm easy 6 miles
Fri - am 10 mile tempo. 14 miles total
pm easy 8 miles
Sat - am easy 12 miles
pm easy 8 miles
Sun - 25 mile long run
Total: 141

9/13 - 9/19
Mon - Off, no running
Tue - am easy 8 miles
pm easy 10 miles
Wed - am 18 miles w/6 miles @ marathon pace (5:31, 5:23, 5:15, 5:19, 5:18, 5:14)
pm easy 6 miles
Thur - pm 12 miles
Fri - am easy 4 miles
pm easy 12 miles
Sat - am easy 7 miles
pm easy 4 miles
Sun - am 1/2 marathon 1:08:54. total 17 miles
pm easy 4 miles
Total: 102

Sunday, September 5, 2010

The Mayhem

So after USA outdoor's and the 10k Road Championships, I've had a hiatus from gathering my thoughts on this thing. Basically, I've been running and training for Chicago Marathon, which was decided in July, and will be executed on October 10th. I've always loved the marathon since last years debut at Twin Cities, and even after the struggle at Nashville. It is one heck of a race that needs precise planning, and if one thing goes wrong, the whole shebang goes south.

So with training being very inconsistent but also purposeful, I feel like its going to be a great marathon. A few thoughts I've are: 1) My training has not been as high of mileage as I'd like. 2) I've done more marathon pace work and longer marathon specific workouts than any other cycle, which is a huge importance when trying to run 5:18 pace if you've never practiced it (especially at altitude). 3) My weeks have been all over the place with mileage (i.e. 27 one week, 110 another week...). This may not be as bad as I'm thinking it could be, especially if I'm getting in the big miles now, as well as long runs in. 4) We're getting some advise from a Korean 2:10 marathoner who has run 39 marathons all in the 2:10 - 2:20 range. His training is helping and is simple. 5) Chicago Marathon is Flat and Fast!!!

With these few hiccups in training; its still going to be another great learning experience.

This past week was 126 miles with two long runs:

M- 10 easy
T- am 9 miles easy
pm 4 miles easy
W- am 18 miles (9 easy, 4 miles in: 5:20, 5:18, 5:10, 5:18, 5 miles easy)
pm 4 miles easy
R- am 12 easy
pm 8 easy
F- am 11 miles easy
pm 12x 400m on the grass
S- am 12.5 easy/hilly
pm 6 miles easy
S- am 22.5 miles with fartlek 1200m-1600m-1200m

Total: 126