Sunday, March 29, 2009

The Hard Work is done

I just finished my 15th week of training and 106th straight day of running. Most of the hard work is done for Boston and now it is taper time. I need to do everything I can to feel fresh and energized when I toe the line on Monday, April 20th.

I had a great confidence booster workout today. Yesterday Anchorage received a little dusting of ash from Mt. Redoubt (volcano) so we decided to do the whole workout in the sports dome (Indoor 400 meter track). Here is the workout:

3 mile warm-up
2 X 2 miles @ Tempo (5:40 pace) w/ 400m jog in between sets
7 miles (6:45-6:50 pace)
3 miles @ Tempo (last mile was at 5:22 pace)
3 miles cool down

Total: 20 miles

This workout gives me a lot of confidence to run well at Boston. I was able to run some pretty good miles toward the end while I was tired. Just like I'll have to do in Boston. This workout teaches you to run fast while you are still tired. We were also able to run some of the warm-up and 7 mile portion on the indoor turf field. It was nice to be able to mix it up and not do the entire run on the track.

Here is my mileage for the week 3/23-3/29

3/29- 20+ miles
3/28- 11 miles (6am/5pm)
3/27- 7 miles
3/26- 17 miles (13am/4pm)
3/25- 12+ miles (6 X 1200 @ 5K pace w/ 2 min. rest) 5:08 pace
3/24- 11 miles (6am/5pm)
3/23- 10 miles (6am/4pm)

Total: 90 miles

Now that the Race Preparation phase is finished I now move into the final phase which is the Taper phase. I'm going to try and get 65-70 miles this next week, then 45-50 miles the following, then it's RACE WEEK!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Ready to Race!

I've been training for awhile now and I'm ready to race. I've been serious about preparing for Boston now for 15 straight weeks. Am I getting burned out? I wouldn't say that, but I'm definelty ready to move on from this high mileage and taper down for the race.

All the hard work is almost done and I need to make sure I get to the starting line healthy and ready to run. Sometimes it can be hard to find the motivation to put on the shoes and run. I felt this a little last year too, toward the end of my Boston training. I hear it is normal though to have these feelings. I really have no problem getting my runs in because I have set a good goal for myself and I know I need the mileage.

I am really excited for Boston this year. I've prepared correctly and I'm going to have a great race. I truly believe I will run under 2:40. My good friend Jerry Ross told me that their really shouldn't be any big suprises if you are ready to run on race day. If you did all the training you should have a good estimation of what your time will be on race day. Of course things out of your control can pop up like the weather or illness, but I can't worry about those things. I've learned that through my long runs and Marathon Pace workouts that I should be able to run right around 6 min. pace.

Today, my legs feel pretty tired from the last couple of days. Wednesday night I ran 12 miles at the dome (6 X 1200m @ 5K pace w/ 2 min. rest)and yesterday I did 13 miles in the morning on my Boston route and another 4 super easy on my treadmill in the evening for a total of 17 miles. So, today I will run an easy 8 miles on the treadmill because it's snowing pretty good outside. Sunday will be my last hard effort before I start to taper down. Sunday's workout should look like this:

2 mile warm-up
2 X 2 miles @ Tempo
10 mile run (outside)
3 miles @ Tempo
2 mile cool down
Total: 21 miles

This is a workout I did last year that gave me a lot of confidence leading to Boston. It showed me that I can still run fast when I'm tired.

Well, I'm almost to Boston!

Monday, March 23, 2009

100 Days in a row!

I started my journey to Boston on Dec. 14th and I've run every single day so far, which gives me 100 days in a row. It isn't one of my goals to run x amount of days in a row. Its just that my marathon training program called for it, so I followed it. I've also been really lucky to not be injured or super fatigued to miss a run. As long as you take your recovery days correctly or slow, it isn't that hard to run everyday.

Today was just a recovery day. I ran 6 miles in the morning and 4 more miles in the afternoon. Both runs were done on the treadmill.

On another note Mt. Redoubt finally erupted last night and we have been very fortunate that the ash isn't blowing toward Anchorage. It would be a bummer to have to run everyday inside for awhile.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Sticking to your Goals!

I had a pretty tough week. Not just physically but mentally. I came down with a sore throat on monday morning that progressively got worse all week. It never got super bad or anything, but I coughed a lot, runny nose, and felt weak at times. Normally I would just take days off, but I have set a goal to follow a program to give me the best shot of breaking 2:40 at Boston. I probably could've taken some days off and been fine, but mentally it would of made me weaker. I didn't want to falter from my program. I did all the key workouts, but made sure that the easy recovery days were done correctly (which means SLOW!). Also, I did my best to get rest. I ate pretty good and made sure I wasn't staying up late. I drank a lot more water then I was accustomed too also. If you want to become the best athlete you can you have to make sacrifices. Sure, it would've been easy to not run and watch some NCAA basketball or take a nap. I tell my wrestlers all the time that sure it's not fun to go for a run or get an extra weight lifting session in, or go to practice when your friends are going out or to a movie. But, when you can achieve a goal it makes all those sacrifices worth it. If achieving goals were easy, then it wouldn't mean a damn thing if you achieved it!

Here was my training week for 3/16-3/22:

3/22- 20 miles
3/21- 12 miles (10K Time Trial- 33:47)
3/20- 6 miles
3/19- 7 miles
3/18- 14 miles
3/17- 10 miles (5 X 600m @ 5K pace w/ 90 sec rest)
3/16- 7 miles

Total: 76 miles

I have one more week of high mileage (90 miles) than I begin the taper phase. On another note, it was good timing to be sick. Better now than in the upcoming weeks!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

A little under the weather

I started getting a little sore throat on saturday night and it just has slowly gotten a little worse over the past few days. I coughed a lot last night while trying to sleep. Then today I have a runny nose and feel a little run down. I'm training my way through it, but I'm being careful to make sure I'm eating good, drinking plenty of water, and resting. I think today will be the worse of it and I should slowly start getting better everyday. I figure it is better to get sick now then the week of Boston. So actually good timing.

I had a pretty good workout yesterday (VO2 max) and today I ran 14 miles. I ran my hilly Boston route which is 12 miles then I ran the last 2 miles on my treadmill. It seems kind of pointless to run the last 2 on the mille and not just finish the whole run outside. I had all intentions too, but I was gettig tired of running on the ice, slush, and dry pavement with my ice bugs on. Plus traffic was starting to get really busy and the sidewalks kind of sucked.

On another note, the Boston Bib #'s came out yesterday and I am Bib #1323! Which also means I'm in Corral 1, which is really close to the starting line. I should cross the starting line within 5-8 seconds only. Not bad considering their are 26,000 people entered.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Watching the sunrise

I had a super workout today! I have to say that today's workout gives me a ton of confidence heading into the last month until Boston. I woke up at 6am to get an early start on this key workout. I was able to drink 1 1/2 cups of coffee and eat one waffle before I began. I watched a little tv (music videos) and played around on the internet a little while I waited for my food to settle. I started running around 8am.

I did the entire workout on my treadmill to make sure that I was on pace. It is just too hard in Anchorage to do this type of workout outside because of all the ice. It was just barely getting light when I started and I was able to see a beautiful sunrise over the mountains.

Here it is:

3 mile warm-up

15 miles @ MP
mile 1: 6:07
mile 2: 6:07
mile 3: 6:07
mile 4: 6:03
mile 5: 6:03
mile 6: 6:03
mile 7: 6:00
mile 8: 6:00
mile 9: 6:00
mile 10: 5:56
mile 11: 5:56
mile 12: 5:56
mile 13: 5:52
mile 14: 5:52
mile 15: 5:52

2 mile cool down.

Total: 20 miles

I have to say that I'm really happy with it. I started off easy just like I would in a race and gradually picked it up a little. In all honesty the last 6 miles felt the easiest. I felt like picking the pace up a little for the last 3 miles, but resisted the urge because I wanted to really absorb this workout and be prepared to keep my high mileage for the next 2 weeks.

Here is my mileage for the week:

3/8- 11 miles (6am/5pm)
3/9- 12+ miles (6 X 1000m @ 5K pace w/ 2min. rest)
3/10- 15 miles
3/11- 10 miles (6am/4pm)
3/12- 16 miles (12am/4pm)
3/13- 7+ miles
3/14- 20 miles (15 @ MP)

Total: 91 miles

Here are a couple items from last year's race.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Good workout in the Dome!

I had a good quality workout today on our 400m track in our indoor sports dome. It was a little chaotic because all the ASD track teams were doing some spring break workouts, but it was nice to get it out of the way in the morning. The sports dome is such a great thing for our community. It's almost a must for our high school track and soccer programs. Every track and soccer field in Anchorage is still under snow and ice.

Here were the details of today's workout:

4 mile warm-up
6 X 1000m @ 5K pace (3:15) W/ 2 min. rest
4 mile cool down
Total: 12+ miles

Here a couple of Boston items from last year for motivation.

Monday, March 9, 2009

86 Days of Running in a row!

Not that it is important to run everyday when you are training for a marathon, but I have run everyday since the State Wrestling Tournament on Dec. 13th. Which means I am at 86 days in a row. Obviously you can't run hard or long everyday but if you throw in recovery runs then it is possible to run every day and still absorb the training. I've talked in other blog posts about the benefits of recovery runs. The key is to run them slow enough that it helps speed up recovery for your next run or key workout. Here is a run down of last weeks training:

3/8- 20 miles
3/7- 11+ miles (10K Time Trial)
10K- 34:20 (5:37, 5:36, 5:36, 5:31, 5:26, 5:14, 1:20) = 34:20
3/6- 6 miles
3/5- 8 miles (6 X 100m striders)
3/4- 15 miles
3/3- 9 miles (5 X 600m @ 5K pace w/90 sec. rest)
3/2- 7 miles- recovery

Total: 76 miles

Saturday, March 7, 2009

10K "Time Trial"

My 10K "Time Trial" went pretty good. It was the first time I've ever done a 10K on a track. I've never even done a 5K on a track before either. It went pretty good. We did a 2+ mile warm-up and then we started. Lots of runners their today, which was awesome. Here are a few that I remember: Jerry Ross, John Clark, Sam Hill, Jason Hofacker, Jake Moe, and lots more from Jerry's Marathon training group.

I ended up getting a 2 second PR! But it was super easy. We'll not super easy, but the easiest 10K I have ever run. I probably took it out a little too easy the first 5K, but I finished strong. When I ran my 34:22 last year it was the opposite. I ran my first few miles at 5:26 and then died. So, I'm happy I ran it pretty smart. Here were my splits: (I hit the last mile hard, and had a lot left in the tank, so I could've run this a lot faster).

Mile 1: 5:37

Mile 2: 5:36

Mile 3: 5:36

Mile 4: 5:31

Mile 5: 5:26

Mile 6: 5:14

.2: 1:20

Total: 34:20

I would've liked to run a little faster, but I gotta be happy that I did this after running 94 miles last week and specifically marathon training. Plus, I felt recoverd really fast after the race.

Did approx. 3 mile cool down.

I'm getting some good confidence for Boston. 18 miler tomorrow!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Treadmill Simulation of the Boston Hills

Here is what week #12 on the Road to Boston looked like:

3/1- 24 miles
2/28- 8 miles
2/27- 16 miles (4am/12pm)
2/26- 10 miles (6am/4pm)
2/25- 15 miles
2/24- 11 miles (6am/5pm)
2/23- 10 miles (6am/4pm)

Total: 94 miles

I had a great workout today and a great week of training! I need to reflect on where I stand right now with 7 weeks to go until Boston. I'm definetly in position to run a sub 2:40 but I need to make sure I'm doing the right things to get to the start line in great running shape and injury free. I just ran my first ever 90+ mile week and I feel pretty good. I'm hitting my workouts with this higher mileage, but I'm definetly feeling like I need those recovery days. My fitness is getting so good that I have to make a conscious effort to run slow on the recovery days. It's hard to run over 7 min. pace, but I need to know that it's in my best interest to do so.

My legs are feeling really well, with the exception of my feet. My feet feel like that have been taking the biggest toll with this new mileage. They ache a little in the evening and when I wake up. I almost need to warm them up before I begin running. I'll roll them a little on a can of corn in the evening and morning to get them loosened. Once I'm warmed up they feel a lot better.

I just finished Mesocycle 2 (Lactate Threshold + Endurance) in the Pete Pfitzinger "Advanced Marathoning" program. Next in Mesocycle 3 is considered "Race Preparation". It lasts 4 weeks with a total of 4 VO2max workouts and 2 8-15K tune up races. I planning on running 10K's for both of them. I'd like to set them up in the dome.

Today I had a 24 miler. I did the first 15 miles outside. I ran the south loop w/service extention and added on 3 miles at the end. Lots of hill on this route. I quickly changed clothes and hopped on the treadmill for the last 9 miles. I ran 1 mile pretty easy then I did the Treadmill simulation Boston Hills workout. I found this on the internet. Here it is:

Treadmill equivalent of Boston Marathon Hills.

Hill 1: +96 ft, 0.6402 miles long~ 2.83% Grade (use 3%)
Hill 2: +78 ft, 0.3363 miles long~ 4.39% Grade (use 4.5% or 5%)
Hill 3: +75 ft, 0.4698 miles long~ 3.03% Grade (use 3% or 3.5%)
Hill 4 (HBH): +100 ft, 0.4788 miles long,~ 3.96% (use 4% or 4.5%)

Between hill 1 and hill 2 the distance is about 3/4 mile

Between hill 2 and hill 3 is slightly over 1 mile. Like 1.1

Between hill 3 and hill 4 (heartbreak) is about 1/3 to 1/2 mile

The last 4 miles I gradually picked up the pace and was at 6:08 pace when I finished. My legs were a little tired, but I felt great. I wasn't wearing a heart rate monitor, but I felt like I was barely breathing. I finished the workout with a nice 12 minute Ice bath. 7 more weeks until Boston!