Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Training Update 4/22/09

First of all, today is a great day... my 3rd wedding anniversary. Thank you to my wonderful wife Christine for 3 great years with many more to come!

Now an update on training. As I planned, I took a rest day on Sunday with a 12-14 miler planned for Monday. Monday morning I woke up at 5:30, ate my usual pre-run breakfast, and headed out the door at 6:30 am planning to run a half-marathon at my planned marathon pace (9:45). The run started off poorly... my headphones pretty much died a half-mile into the run. After getting over that, I cruised through the first mile in 9:15. What??? I told myself to slow down and completed my second mile in... 9:15. Third mile? 9:15. Fourth mile? 9:17.

Well, at this point, I decided that rather than try to reproduce race pace, I would just go ahead and run my 13+ miles at a "comfortable pace". That turned out to be 9:15-9:20 until I hit ~2 miles left, and I picked up the pace - I could hear faint bass lines from some of songs on my iPod, and a particularly catchy KT Tunstall tune came up. :) Not sure what I was running, but I was pretty energized - it was a beautiful day, I was feeling good, and I was in the groove. It was probably a 8:45ish pace, because my overall pace for 13.5 miles ended up being 9:11!

Not only was it a great run, but for whatever strange reason, I didn't feel the usual "post-run, can't walk down the stairs, my legs are so stiff" feeling either Monday or Tuesday. I did take Tuesday off, as I do after all my long runs, and I decided to take today off... still fighting general fatigue (need more hours in the day for sleep!) and woke up with sore feet (the wonders of being almost flat-footed).

I'm not sure whether Monday's great run was a sign that my training is all coming together or not, but I'm planning on keeping up my regular schedule of two days on, one day off for the next week: shooting for 3-5 mile runs on Thursday, Friday, Sunday and Monday, then probably a couple of days rest, an easy Thursday run, a couple of days rest and then Eugene. Hopefully I'll find some other things to get me some "exercise" (yard work, long walks) during those last few days, but the way my training has been going, that seems like the best taper for me.

Moral of the story: I'm definitely signing up for a pace group at Eugene, because I proved to myself I can't gauge pace very well right now. The 4:15 group is a 9:44-9:45 pace, so I think I'll go with that one...

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