Yesterday, I couldn't quite decide to do with my normal Thursday run. I had been doing 14 miles with the last 5 at marathon pace in late January and through February. March was supposed to be the "month of hills" but injury and some good judgment put the kabash on that. Now what to do? I'm four and a half weeks from the marathon. I think I peaked too early by switching over to the Benji Durden plan too soon (800m intervals on Tues and tempo intervals on Th) during the last marathon training cycle. Here I am though staring the marathon in the whites of its eyes. Should I do some faster stuff? Well, despite there being nothing in the middle of the road but yellow stripes and dead armadillos, I compromised.
The route was out from my house, twice around the lake (3.8 miles a lap), and back for a total of 12.2 miles. I planned to do some marathon pace running on the first lap and some tempo (10 mile race pace) intervals on the second lap. I ran this in my wave precision because my quads are just beat up and I think the Free's are part of the reason. (It's probably good for me, but I don't want it to disrup
On the first lap I did 3 miles at 7:37, 7:27, and 7:27 pace according to the Garmin. I'm really not sure on the gps accuracy. There was a lot of uphill on the first mile, but even so, it felt too hard. The last also felt tougher than marathon pace. I'm not sure if it's because I'm not in shape or a distance accuracy problem. The surface also has a lot of loose gravel, so it's not exactly a mondo track.
On the second lap, I did 2x1 miles + 0.65 miles (how it fit in the terrain). I was shooting for 6:50 but the times went 7:15, 2:02 rest, 7:29, 3:19 "rest" (actually overran last interval by 30 secs first), and 7:08 (0.65 miles). The gps seemed wonky. The 7:29 was quite hard although it looks OK on the map. I just don't think I'm in *that* bad a shape. The 7:08 was on a gentle downhill. It felt very easy. I got down to 6:52 before I daydreamed and slowed down. This was all hard enough to call it tempo effort even though the time sucked. Of this is the day I forgot to strap on the HRM belt.
This morning was just a very easy 5 miles. I noticed again a phenomenon I've seen often. My heart rate is "suppressed" the day after a tempo run. The first mile was screwed up but the last 4 were between 132 and 136 bpm and averaged a little better than 9:00 min/mi.
Perhaps it's laziness, but I've cut my usual 6.2 mile run (55 minutes) down to 5.0 miles (45 minutes). I'm thinking I should make my hard days a little harder and my easy days a little easier as the marathon approached.
I'm really not sure what to expect on Sunday. I don't think the times above are indicative though. The weather looks great. 47 degrees and 8 mph winds. I guess we could lose a few mph, but I'll be drafting off Fenty anyway :-)
Here are my goals/expectations.
- upset if I don't PR
- expect to break 1:09
- ecstatic if I break 1:09 and beat Fenty
- super ecstatic if I get my finish photo with Bill Rodgers (not likely: he ran 1:07:16 last year)