Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Goofy race photos, goals, and training strategy

I'll start with the goofy race photos. You can find all them here, and this one is me doing my best Roger Bannister impression. Looking at my form, I swear it looks better when I'm wearing the Nike Frees. I don't see the ridiculous heel strike. I didn't want to risk wearing them in the marathon though since I'd only run them for one long run and was pretty sore after that.

Well, I haven't run a step since the marathon and I'm already been plotting my revenge. Some goals I have (in order of likely achievement) are

  • sub-20 5K -- I think I can do this summer based on 32:45 8k and 7x800 in 3:09
  • sub-7 minute pace HM
  • BQ (3:15) -- I'll get there this Fall.
  • 1:30 HM -- this is probably a ways off, but I have an outside chance in Sept
  • sub-40 by 40 -- sub-40 10K by age 40. Maybe not achievable. I turn 37 next month, so I better hustle! Of course 41 minutes comes first. I have a soft PR of 47:21 in an actual 10K. I split 42:55 at Cherry Blossom. I figure I might be in 41:30 shape or better now based on the 8k.

So how and where do I get there?

I'm running a 5K a week from Saturday. It's not certified, but I'm call it a PR because I know the RD and he's as anal as I am. The training "plan" is to limit my runs to under an hour between now and then. I might double a day or two next week and I'll probably cave and break my rule on Sunday, but that's my plan!

For the all-consuming BQ, I'm considering the following options:
  • 12 Oct - Steamtown. Can't beat -955', but it can be hot and I'd have to asterisk my BQ with the net drop. It's early enough though that I could run it and a backup race in late Nov.
  • 15 Nov - Richmond. I understand it's supposed to be a pretty fair course. It was really hot a few years ago though and the route is exposed. Avg high 60. Record high 86!
  • 23 Nov - Philadelphia. Supposed to be a pretty fast course. Couldn't be too hot. Avg high 51. Record for the day is 62. Record low of 21 might suck.
  • 29 Nov - NCR trail marathon. Easy course. Last 2 are a bitch, but the first 24 are very easy. Pretty sheltered from sun and wind. Very unlikely to be hot. My only worry is rain/snow. Rain could cause trouble on parts of the course. Very convenient to home. Drive up that morning.
  • 21 Jan - Carlsbad marathon. We're going to be in San Diego on vacation and I could run this. It looks beautiful. The weather should be good: avg low 46, avg high 61. It's San Diego, so the record high is only 73. The SD weather variance is very low. The course looks very difficult though.

I'm thinking of doing either a Steamtown/Nov backup or a Nov marathon/Carlsbad backup. I'm leaning towards Steamtown/NCR and running the half at Carslbad for kicks. Even if I BQ at Steamtown, I might have to run a legit BQ at NCR for peace of mind.

Marathon training? Man am I confused on this. There are several ways I can go. I've thought of just following the program in Ron Daws's book, "Running Your Best," which is basically straight Lydiard. This is a 6-month plan. Not sure how I work the two marathons in, but I can figure that out.

I've also thought about doing something completely different like Matt Fitzgerald's "Brain Training" book. I think the book is full of it with regards to be revolutionary or anything, but the notion of doing drills, strength training, fast repeats, etc. makes some sense to me, because I think I'm an incredibly weak runner. I have pretty good endurance, but no power. I was a completely sedentary never-was in his 30s when I started running and I've taken the long slow distance approach from the beginning.

I've also thought of Summer of Malmo'ing it. Doubling as much as possible with runs under an hour except maybe 1.5 hours on Sunday. I'll have to look at the Joe Rubio chapter in "Run Strong" but I think it's pretty close to this philosophy. This is appealing, but doubling is tough on the schedule and running to work means running 10.5 miles, which takes me more than hour. I like running to work, which brings me to me last option.

Run to and from work a lot. I can fit this in with Lydiard mileage-building pretty easily and I'll save gas money, too! I also have this strange theory that back-to-back pm/am runs help with endurance with less injury risk than single long runs. The notional plan would be. Drive in Tu, run home; run in Wed, drive home; drive in Th, run home; run in Fr, drive home; run 10 miles Sat pm; run 15 Sun am; 5 miles Mon am. I figure that's about 75 in singles and I'd double if I went higher.

Ah, not running stuff makes you think too much. Maybe I'll run tomorrow morning.


aharmer said...

Hey Greg, I was going to shoot you an email but couldn't find your address...send me one if you get a minute. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Adam, if you tell Greg he should do low heart rate training, I'm going to beat you with a stick...all right, I jest, we do have differing opinions on this, but there is more than one way to skin a cat.

Greg, IMHO, Rubio is tried and true, and you can always skip the doubles if that's simply not possible. To my mind, Joe has a very good program.

8 weeks of "base training"
8 weeks of event specific work.
2-3 week taper.

Base training usually sees

M: Base run
T: Base run + short hills or intervals--just get in touch w/wheels
w: Med long run, EZ
R: EZ/Rec
F: Long slow tempo or faster tempo intervals.
SU: EZ long run.

8 weeks event specific.

Same as base, but you increase your mileage by 10-15%, T: Do long VO2 intervals, F: Hard, hard tempo. Increase LR and mid-week run.

Like I said, I think this is a solid, solid plan. You always can email Joe directly; if he has time, he'll be happy to reply.

Greg said...


Don't worry about Adam. He actually sent me an email recommending 20-, 40-, and 60-minute tempo runs believe it or not.

I've perusing the board at runningwarehouse.com, which I guess Joe Rubio runs. I'm making my way through those posts and just ordered Joe Vigil's "Road to the Top," which he recommends.

For now, I'm just running easy.