>Racing>2019 3:20, And Beyond
Aight...the real reason we're here.
70.4 miles. LOTS of easy miles. 60 has been the weekly goal from the start of this cycle for CIM. I've been doing Hanson's speed, strength and Marathon paced workouts as well as keeping with their 16 mile long run philosophy. The weekly mileage has been injury free except one random "behind the knee" pain after (I think) Tuesday's workout (10 seconds faster than goal marathon pace). I can't say I've ever felt so relaxed before daily runs physically. Nothing really hurts like I'd expect to be for doing so many miles. Other than some light sickness (because I didn't clean my water bottle) I've gotten through workouts and M paced runs with surprising ease relative to a few months ago when 7:00 pace seemed WAY too fast.
Tu: 5x1 mile @ 6:45. It was supposed to be 6. My stomach wasn't cooperating so I cut out the last one. 6:43-6:45 pace with a 400m jog recovery. skipped TRX.
Th: 8@ Goal Marathon Pace (6:55is). Stomach discomfort on miles 3 and 4 but it went away. Gel around mile 8 of the whole run. Felt like a strong run overall. TRX after the workout.
Sa: 16 miles in about 2:18:00. Split between a 6 miler with a friend at a slower pace, and 10 at whatever felt comfortable.
2020 Goal: Figure out the problem.
Mother of Cats
Agree with Kcam on not making up workouts (and the solid TT)
Brewing - that is a great eek. I'm glad things are going well!
Vaporflies - I agree that the true original VFs were better than the Flyknit, but it's hard to find a pair. I actually have a new unused pair sitting in my closet that I think I'm going to break out for Indy. I just didn't like how the Next%s felt when my stride fell apart and I began shuffling - I think it's the lower heel drop.
And...catching up with my week:
52 miles, 9 "miles" of pool-running, and 500 yards of swimmingM: 6 miles very easy (9:10), yoga, 3 miles very easy (8:39), drills/strides, and 3 "miles" of pool-running.T: 11 miles, including a track workout of 2x1600, 2x800 in 6:12, 6:08, 2:56, 2:55,. Recoveries were 4:35/4:45 after the 1600s, 2:30 between 800s. Followed with injury prevention work and 500 yards recovery swimming.W: 7 miles very easy (9:02), core, and DIY yoga.Th: Light upper body weights/core, DIY yoga, and 6 "miles" pool-runningF: 7 miles, including 1 mile up-tempo (6:09) and DIY yoga.Sa: 2 miles very easy (9:06) and DIY yoga.Su: just under 3 miles warm-up, and then Columbus Half-Marathon in 84:08 (6:26 pace)
Everyone's gotta running blog; I'm the only one with a POOL-RUNNING blog.
And...if you want a running Instagram where all the pictures are of cats, I've got you covered.
Congrats to Lauren, rlk, and Dwave!
Here ya go, rovatti...the last couple of weeks have been pretty blah...or blech...or (*cough, cough, hack, blow nose, hack, cough, hack...)
M: SRDT: 8M ~ 1:08W: 8M ~ 1:05T: SRD (work-related)F: SRD (work-related)S: SickS: Sick
M: SickT: SickW: SickT: 4.9M ~ 0:40F: 5.4M ~ 0:44S: 10M ~ 1:27S: 3.5M ~ 0:29
16M the week before, then 23.8M last week. Not quite how tapers are supposed to go...
10/4: Twin Cities Marathon
They had one pair last time I was there, but they looked fairly heavily used/returned and they still wanted $250 smh...
Everything else I've seen has been FK.
Check the Nike outlet. If you find a pair of 4% in a size 10.5 I'll take them. I need to see what this magic is about.
5:27 / 19:03 / 40:32 / 88:12 / 3:12
My strained calf seems fine now, and I'm trying maintenance "voodoo flossing" to keep it from recurring (for the millionth time).
Anyhow, I had a decent week (or I wouldn't be posting...)
T: 7 with track intervals 1600, 1200, 1000, 800, 400 with 400 recoveries (no watch, but about 6:10 pace avg)
W: 6 easy
Th: 10 with tempo in Central Park 7@7:10
F: 4 easy + weights
S: 7 easy
S: 10 easy
total = 44
I got a new Garmin (with wrist HR), just to remind me that 9min pace is not necessarily easy.
Nice training weeks from Ace and Brew!
From the Internet.
RACE REPORT! Baystate Marathon 2019
I had written a whole long training part for another thing/eventually to pop on my blog, but in the interest of not making this any longer than it already is (and it is LONG, sorry!), I will leave that off here. Essentially, I ran A LOT but not too much and did a totally stupid amount of quality (two MLRs and a workout and a long run almost every week; I'm still run streaking and today will be day 211 whenever I get out the door to shuffle a couple miles). I REALLY REALLY wanted revenge after my May marathon. I paced that race really well and got a safe BQ, but I had been anxious for weeks beforehand and got rattled by mile 5. I knew I hadn't run it to the best of my ability on the day and was super upset about it after the fact. I was capable of much better than 3:24 but I had no other races or evidence to support that assertion, just sheer dumb stubbornness, which, well, you know how much that's worth versus an actual race time to prove it.
Two big mental turning points for me this summer, one bad and one great. Mid-August, I raced a tiny 5K that measured way long and finished up a hill. I had taken a down week to get in a bit of a taper, cut a track workout short on coaches' suggestions, but when I got there, mentally I just wasn't ready to hit it. Mile 1 was OK but mile 2 was weak and when the hill showed up and there was nobody in front of me and nobody behind me, I just gave up. I downplayed it in my description on Strava and probably here, saying I tempoed it, but really I went home in tears thinking I'd never be able to race well again. One week later, I ran the Falmouth Road Race. Despite the crazy logistics at the start of that race, minimal warmup, heat, and humidity I had an ABSOLUTE BLAST and ran a race I was very happy with given the conditions. I kept that experience with me for the rest of the training block and I got to Baystate calm and ready to roll.
Anyway, ON TO THE RACE:
Woke up with my alarm, got my normal pre-race breakfast and cold brew ready, ate, took care of ah, restroom business, and picked up my carpool buddy for the ~50 min drive north. It was really nice to have company along the way, I might have been a basket case in my car alone for all that time.
Arrived, bib pickup, etc etc you all know the drill. I opted not to bother trying to warm up too much ahead of time. Just walking around between bib pickup/car/start line was enough. Tears welled in my eyes and I actually choked up a little going across the start line - I felt JOY at being fortunate enough to have the opportunity to race. That’s something I haven’t felt in a long time and I held onto that joy for as long as I could. I briefly thought of the saying (completely paraphrasing here sorry) don’t be an idiot in the first half and don’t be a coward in the second. Decided that was too negative for my overall mental plan for the day and settled on “be smart, be brave”.
First two miles were a little quick. I had intended to stick with the 3:20 pacer, who was really pacing for 3:18:30 based on the splits taped to his sign, but after crossing the start line next to him I almost immediately pulled away and never looked back. 7:22. A couple of guys were talking right behind me and they said out loud just as I was thinking it “ooh 7:08, too quick” right after we passed mile 2 (7:10 on my watch), and after that I ended up hanging onto a small pack with those 2 and one more guy for a long while, where we hung in the upper 7:1x/low 7:2x range. I’d occasionally pop out ahead, they would pass me back after a few minutes, but it wasn’t really competitive, just trading the lead and sharing the work. I very much appreciated just being pulled along when they were in the lead, which was most of the first half of the race, and I tried to repay the favor by keeping pace as we passed through water stations when I wasn’t grabbing a cup so they could reel me back in and get the pack back together without losing time or slowing down. Exchanged some snippets of conversation here and there, mostly just to convince myself that I wasn’t working too hard. Took my first gel around mile 7, grabbed water from a couple of the aid stations before and after taking it. One of our original 4 dropped off right after the bridge that marks the start of the second course loop - he hadn’t really trained for it and wasn’t planning to run the whole thing, one of my new friends explains. Three of us introduced ourselves and prepared to get shit done for round 2.
Hit the halfway mark in 1:36:30, exactly on pace for 3:13 though I didn’t do the math and only had a loose idea of where I’d end up. Knew I was under 3:15 since I hadn't seen a single 7:27 mile yet, figured that that 3:13 was in reach, had a feeling already that 3:10 was off the table but that was fine. My legs felt good, my lungs felt good, but I could sense that my stomach was waiting in the wings to try to throw a wrench in my plans, so I was still firmly in the “be smart” phase of my 2-part race plan. Even if you have nothing left for a kick that’s okay - this pace is good, you can just keep going.
A few more tenths of a mile after the half mat and our pace had actually dropped a bit - I saw 7:41 on my watch and it was late enough in the split to trust the lap pace. No no no, I did not come all this way and do all this work just to coast through the back half of this race in 7:40s. Let out an audible “uh oh” and surged ahead, taking charge of our pace for the remainder of the race.
Around mile 15 I started sipping my second gel (w/ caffeine) and it was not going so well. Even small sips were just not making me feel any better, and some water didn’t help at all either. I was hungry when I opened it and glad I had a little but two miles later I just couldn’t finish it, washed it down with a little more water and tossed it.
With the stomach preparing to rebel, I started considering whether I’d have to take a bathroom break. I looked longingly at a portapotty around mile 17 or wherever the heck that aid station was, but decided I’d give myself until the next one to make that call. Next one rolled around and no need, cool. Starting to feel a little burpy though. Oof. Just keep moving. I ran very, very carefully from 16-19, some of my slowest splits in the race (7:28, 25, 28 for 16, 17, 18), knowing that if I totally blew up I’d have a looooong way to go still. Just get to 20 and then you’ll know if shit’s gonna go down or not. Turn off the brain.
And turn it off I did. For the most part. This is where I started coming across the young men who’d trained-but-not-really and were preparing to massively positive split their way to 3:20-30 and beyond. Lots of stopping and walking and making it look hard. Mile 20 is a hard reality for those who weren’t really ready to respect the distance™. “You trained to be able to ignore them. Don't get rattled. Just keep going.” Brain off again and the legs kept turning over. Skip this water station. Just a sip at the next one to see if it’ll help the stomach .
23 miles. Just 3.3 to go (because my watch was off by close to 0.1 at this point so just add that onto the mental math). Uh oh, side stitch building - be careful!! Grab a sip of gatorade, mostly spill it on my leg oops. 24 miles. A couple tenths and then less than 15 minutes. I allowed the legs a little more freedom at this point, though I was still trying to prevent the side stitch from becoming a capital-P Problem. Around this weird curve with stupid camber and no mile marker but 25 ticked off. I could see the bridge, less than a mile, less than 7 more minutes of misery. Side stitch is no longer registering. Just keep rolling. You don’t have to kick, you just can’t stop moving.
But, I mean, I do have to kick a little because that's just good fun right there, so I did. Just a little bit. Over the finish line and the clock was past 3:13 at this point but holy shit it’s 3:13 and I FUCKING DID IT AND I’M FUCKING DONE
3:13:15.2, and what?!?! Good enough for 2nd F30-39. I swear it was a slow year. I don’t think it would have happened last year. Holy bananas I've come a long way. I ran this same race 3 years ago, my first full marathon, in 3:48 and I remember looking at the top age group times in awe and thinking I'd never get there. Now here I am hungry for the next one!
Epilogue and lessons learned
Could I have run faster without the stomach thing, or with more fuel in my system (1.5 gels and a sip of Gatorade is, uh, not ideal)? WHO CARES. I ran as fast as I could on this day and I think that was kind of an important lesson for me to finally drill into my thick skull. The weather was perfect, my training was insane, my taper was carefully planned. This time around, however, I didn’t give up and bag it when I could have, when the stomach problems started nagging at me and I realized it wasn’t going to be an A+ race day. An A- is still awesome - that tenacity and level-headedness got me an 11.5 MINUTE marathon PR, just 5 months after an ~8 minute PR. That's wild. I don’t really run a lot of tune-up races so it took me a while to really understand what it means to race as hard as you can when things aren't perfect, but at least I figured it out eventually. I kept saying I should run more tune-ups throughout this cycle, but this made me realize that I don’t HAVE to. Just have to be smart with how I set goals based off of training alone, and then be confident in that training to carry me through.
I blog now. It's still a work in progress.
Lauren: Enjoyed the RR! And if you think that was long, you should read other RR from this group (looking at you, brew). I love the mantra for the day. Be smart and be brave is one I may have to borrow for future use. I like having a mantra to repeat throughout the long races. My marathon PR mantra was "focus, fun, drive". I must've said it in my head 50 times the last 5 miles. Glad you ran with joy and were able to turn the brain off at times. Excellent day and well deserved PR!
Road Mile: 5:19 (2017), 5k: 18:10 (2017), 10k: 37:10 (2020), HM: 1:21:55 (2020), M: 2:57:18 (2018)
Aspiring Hobby Jogger
kcam - Yeah, it was a solo TT. I have a HM in two weeks, then a full about 5 weeks after that.
I'm not so much trying to "make up" missed workouts by adding in extra workouts I wouldn't have been doing anyway - just going for some of the tougher stuff in my bag o' workouts that I've done before.
OMR - Better in the taper than during the race, I guess.
Rovatti - Definitely a nice week, and good to hear your calf is solid.
Lauren - Enjoyed the RR as well. It reads that you have great perspective on the race and your training cycle overall.
5k: 18:25 10/19 (solo track TT) │ 10k: 38:56 4/18 │ HM: 1:24:16 11/19 │ M: 3:04:13 11/18
Upcoming Races (?):
9/5 - Tunnel to Towers 5K
9/27 - Run Elk City 5k
10/4 - Wurst Race Half
10/18 - Hot Chocolate 15k (Pacing)
Late Oct./Early Nov. - Some flat, fast marathon (hopefully)
Lauren: Enjoyed the RR! And if you think that was long, you should read other RR from this group (looking at you, brew). I love the mantra for the day.
(insert hand raised emoji) First person I thought of when I read that sentence. I believe my mantra has become "checkers or wreckers" and I keep imagining another one that (hopefully) isn't necessary for CIM. I'm willing to pull it out though. Great report Lauren. Great run. Way to hang in there. Stomach pains are something I'm dealing with right now while running and SO FAR they're going away just like yours did on race day.
From Lauren's RR "24 miles. A couple tenths and then less than 15 minutes.". I don't do mantras but when the going starts to get tough in a marathon I switch from miles to minutes. 14 minutes of running is mentally easier than 2miles of running (in my mind, anyway) and things like that make all the difference when you want to stop.
Congrats again, Lauren.
Great report, Lauren! And TBH my three best races were on very small amounts of fuel.
I really enjoyed the report as well. The whole "turn off the brain" is something I do a lot. (literally, I envision myself flipping off a switch).
Unlike Ilana, I have not had good luck with very small amounts of fuel. But heck, we're all different.
Congrats again on an excellent race!
I'll say that the best races I had at any distance (including the marathon) have been on very little 'fuel' (I hate that word in relation to running). I just eat like I normally do the evening before and then have something like a banana and maybe half a bagel and good to go. I don't carry gels and just take them where they hand them out on the course. Everyone's different of course so you have to find what works for you. I ran one Boston marathon on a single chocolate donut and that was the first time I ever dipped under 3 hours and that time stood as my PR for several years! So, therefore, have a donut!
kcam: I'm looking forward to trying the donut method!
Thanks everyone!! I think I've finally kicked my race anxiety for good, which almost feels EVEN BETTER than a huge PR, and I'm excited for the next ~6 months of stuff that I have planned (a few indoor meets, taking a stab at a sub-90 half - if I blow up who cares lol, enjoying that little 4/20 race, then a 15k fitness check/fun trip with friends about 5 weeks after that).
ilana hmm good to know I'm not the only one who can manage without taking in a ton of calories! Maybe that's just how I am. I'll keep experimenting on my long runs and carrying more gels than I need on race day, but if I can't take in much I won't have to panic.
kcam donuts?? IF YOU INSIST!