Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Taper Time

I ran my last 20.2 mile run. I was able to run it outside and the conditions were almost exactly what I'm expecting for my first marathon. The temperature started out around 60 and climbed to a high of 67. My time included a 6-7 minute sock change break, but I still managed to average my goal pace for a sub-five hour marathon. Here is a breakdown of my 5 mile splits:

Mile 1-5: 54:56 Avg Heartrate 153
Mile 6-10 54:58 Avg Heartrate 156
Mile 11-15 1:01:19 Avg Heartrate 158 (time includes the 6-7 minute sock change)
Mile 16-20 57:14 Avg Heartrate 163

One most excellent side note. I totally chicked a guy (ok, he was probably 15 years older than me, but it still counts). I had just changed my socks at 14 miles and was power walking as I ate my gel and drank some water. Behind and to my left I hear a guy say "two more steps and I'll have you!" I was just about finished with my water so as he pulled alongside I started running again. I heard an agonized "Ow, that's mean!" I just HAD to laugh out loud.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Anaerobic Theshold?

During my "speed" workout (for me, speed is a relative term) I think I discovered my anaerobic threshold. During my my fourth interval at increasing speeds, my heartrate was sustained above 170. I also noticed that my legs started feeling heavy. From my research on the web, I think that this means that my anaerobic threshold is a heartrate just above 170, like about 172. With my first marathon less than three weeks away, I'm not going to get crazy with intervals, but after my marathon recovery, I plan on pushing myself outside my comfort zone and work for faster running times.

Wednesday - 5.49 miles on treadmill in 1:05.

Friday - 3.33 miles on treadmill in 40 minutes.

Saturday - 4.29 miles on treadmill in 50 minutes. Attempted "pyramid" intervals. 0.25 miles @ 6.2, 6.4, 6.6, 6.8, 6.6, 6.4, 6.2 mph. Had to quit after the first 5.

Sunday - 11 miles on treadmill in 2:10.

Tuesday is my last 20 mile run (20.2) before the marathon. I've checked the weather forecast and it looks ideal for an outside run, just about the exact conditions I expect to encounter at Phoenix. Like last time, I plan to make it a dress rehearsal, walking and drinking at the same mileages as the marathon, and stopping to change my socks at about the halfway point. Hopefully this will keep me from running the last 5 miles with blisters like I did on my last 20 miler.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Spirit of the Marathon

I watched "Spirit of the Marathon" this week and really enjoyed it. Its a documentary that follows marathoners through their training and then the running of the Chicago marathon. I like that it showed a wide range of runners, from elite athletes like Deena Kastor, to BQ hopefuls, to back of the pack first-timers like me. A couple of places seemed a little disjointed to me, but overall it was an excellent documentary. I plan on watching it again before the marathon.

This weeks training:

Thursday - 8.23 miles in 1:29:24 on PTC golfcart paths. Planned for 10, but didn't want to make blister from 20 miler worse.

Saturday - 5.74 miles in 1:05 on treadmill. Included 5 x .5 miles @ 6.2 mph.

Sunday - 4.8 miles in 57:26 on treadmill. Had planned on doing 10, but I was running late and needed to get to work.

Monday - 5.93 miles on treadmill in 1:10.

Tuesday - 15 miles on PTC golfcart paths in 2:45:48. This was one minute slower than my time two weeks ago, but this included a stop to change socks in an effort to avoid blisters.

Next week: Last 20 miler before the marathon. Actually I'm planning on running 20.2 miles since in the movie, Deena Kastor says that its the last .2 that are the worst.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

20 mile run - check

I did it, the oft recommended, prescribed, written about, and experienced, 20 mile pre-marathon training run. I had every intention of running it outside, but a look at the forecast and radar showed that there was a very good chance of being stopped by a thunderstorm. So, the dreadmill it was. I tried to treat it as much like I'm planning to run the marathon as I could. I went to the marathon website and found out where all the water and sports drinks stations were and wrote the mileages on a card. Since I'm planning to walk as I drink, I walked 10-15 seconds as I drank on this training run. The run went very well, the only problem I had were two blisters on the bottom of my right foot at about the 15 mile point. By the end of the run it felt like they were covering about half my foot, but of course they were much smaller. One about the size of a quarter and the other very very small. Overall it was a good experience, and gave me confidence that I will be able to complete my first marathon in 33 days.

Training this week:

Friday - 10 miles in 1:51:10 on PTC golfcart paths

Saturday - 3.5 miles in 40 minutes on treadmill. 5 min walking at 3.5 mph, 5 min jogging at 5.2 mph, 2 miles at 6.2 mph, 5+ min jogging at 5.2 mph, 5 min walking at 3.5 mph. Maybe after my marathon, I'll train for and finally run a sub 1 hour 10k?

Sunday - 60 minutes on elliptical while hotel maintenance fixed the treadmill, then 5.1 miles in one hour on treadmill

Monday - 3.13 miles on treadmill in 40 minutes

Tuesday - TWENTY miles on treadmill in 3:58:43

Monday, December 8, 2008

Its My Own Fault

After putting the title on my last post, the song "Running Bare" started running through my brain. Now it will be running through yours. Oh, and the guys in the background will crack you up.

Running Nekkid

On Wednesday the weather was nice, so I packed all my running stuff in my car and drove to Peachtree City for a 10 mile run. However, when I arrived and got all suited up and turned on my Garmin, I discovered that the battery was run down! OMG, how was I going to be able to run without knowing my time and distance and heartrate every second? After nixing the idea of driving home, charging the battery, and driving back, I decided to do things the old fashioned way. Before starting out, I noted the time on my car's clock, and started on my run. The local running club has done a great job marking a 10K route and all the distance markers are very accurate. So I ran the 10K with an extra 4.67 mile loop for a total of 10.87 miles in 1:57 plus/minus a minute. I felt completely naked for the first couple of miles, but I did have my Ipod to keep me company, and as long as I saw a mile marker every 3 or 4 songs, I knew I was doing alright. Next week is the first of two planned 20 mile runs. Scary!

Training this week:

Tuesday - 5.87 miles on treadmill in 1:10

Wednesday - 10.87 miles in approximately 1:57 on PTC golfcart paths. Time is approximate because my Forerunner battery was dead so I used the clock in my car.

Thursday - Off day because of blister I got yesterday

Friday - 6.19 miles on treadmill in 1:10, included 3 x 1 mile @ 6.0 mph. Also 15 seconds at my brother's marathon pace.

Saturday - 10.84 miles on treadmill in 2:10

Sunday - 5.84 miles on treadmill in 1:10

Monday - 15 miles on PTC golfcart paths in 2:44:47

Total: 54.61 miles!

Monday, December 1, 2008


I did it, my longest run so far. After last week's yucky week, I was wondering how this week was going to go, and it surprised me. I stayed at the same hotels I did last week and ran on the same treadmills in the same fitness rooms. Last week I struggled to run 35 miles; my heartrate was high and I just didn't seem to have any oomph. And then this week I ran well over 50 miles and I feel great. One theory floating through my mind on today's 18 mile run is that I started "double bagging" my boobs about 10 days ago....ie I'm wearing 2 sports bras to cut down on the bouncing. My theory is that it constricts my ribcage just a little bit more, and this week I've finally adjusted to the breathing. Any other guess is probably just as good.

This weeks training:

Tuesday - 5.9 miles on treadmill in 1:10

Wednesday - 9.92 miles on treadmill in 2:00

Thursday - 6.16 miles on treadmill in 1:10 included 6 x 5 minutes at 6.0 mph. This seemed way too easy, either the treadmill was slower than the indicated speed or pumpkin pie is the best pre-run energy food ever invented.

Friday - 10.98 miles on treadmill in 2:10

Saturday - 5.92 miles on treadmill in 1:10

Sunday - Rest day

Monday - 18 miles on treadmill in 3:33:28