Tuesday, August 29, 2006


Vacation week

No post last week, as I was on vacation and pretty much off the grid. I am proud to report that I mostly kept on my training schedule in spite of being away from home and the usual routine. This was not too hard to do, since we were staying in a familiar area (we go to the same place each summer).
This was in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire, and the immediate surrounding roads were very hilly, and so provided great workouts for the CCM. I was a little concerned that some of the downhills could cause me injury, but I couldn't pass up the oportunity for the uphill workouts. And what goes up...
I didn't stick to schedule exactly-- I sacrificed Wednesday's 4 miler. But I did keep to Fridays 10 miler. What is remarkable is that that distance didn't feel too bad, after last weeks 13! I actually felt good for most of the run, until a heavy downpour hit around 8.5 miles (memories of the 10 mile race a few weeks ago).
This week: a 15 mile long run. Haven't decided yet whether I'm going to get up really, really early to do it on Friday, or try to do it on the weekend.

Friday, August 18, 2006


Halfway there!

This morning I ran the scheduled 13 miler. Actually, I plotted a 13.1 mile route, in order to get teh half-marathon length. I was essentially last week's 12 mile route, with an extra bit tacked on the end. So, last week's pioneering path felt like old hat already.
I managed 8 minute miles again (almost exactly, which is spooky, except my distance calculation was probably not exact, so who knows what my real time is). This is very encouraging. I saw one estimate that says you can take your half marathon time, double it and add 10 minutes to get your full marathon time (assuming you train for the distance, of course). So based on this, the sub-4 hour time is definitely achievable. EXCEPT: today's coarse was very flat, and the CCM is not. We will have to see...
I felt pretty good for most of the run-- the weather was cool and clear. I was suprised to find that I had some energy to push (slightly) during the last 2 miles, when I saw that the 8 minute pace was in reach. I could have gone further if I had to. Twice as far? Not yet.
Next week I will be on vacation, and will do my running in New Hampshire. I have a coarse map of the area, but I won't try to get exact distances in. This is ok since this is an easy week. Well, sort of easy. There are a lot of hills where we are staying, so I'll get some good hill work in.
On to the second half!

Friday, August 11, 2006


A sense of adventure

I did the 12 miles today! This run went well, though I felt more tired after it than in any other non-race run. More accurately, I was concious of a real feeling of being "beat" that I have not yet felt in any of my training runs. I trust that this is a growing pain, and that when I have 15 and 18 mile runs under my belt, going back to an "easy" 12 miler will not be a big deal.

I decided to attempt this before work, rather than on the weekend. This meant rising very early, and being on the road (driving) by 5 a.m. so that I could hit the road (running) by 6 a.m. The early departure leant a sense of adventure to the whole endeavor. Another factor which made this feel like an adventure is that I headed into uncharted territory.

So here's a list of some firsts:
1. Running 12 miles.
2. Running longer than my previous time record, which was about 1 hour, 25 minutes.
3. Running a Charles River route beyond the Harvard Bridge (I actually went 2 bridges beyond).

It's very satisifying to break through previously-uncrossed borders. I may have to be creative in the latter part of my training to keep the short and medium runs feeling fresh.

Another first, tho I left it off the list above because it is not a personal accomplishmnet. I used the Camelback fluid carrier my sister Kathy gave me, way back in March. I've been waiting for a good long run to try this out, but also did not want to carry the extra bulk on a really hot day. Today was nice and cool, and the length of the run made it mandatory to bring some fluids along. It worked out really well, being easy to use without stopping. The extra weight and bulk was not too bothersome.

Monday, August 07, 2006


Ratcheting it up a notch

Now things are going to get interesting. This phase of training definitely, without at doubt, new territory for me. This week's runs are 3, 6, 3, and 12. A few observations:
1. The midweek hard run is up to 6 miles now-- This is a serious run. It will take some planning the night before so I can get this run in and be on time for work.
2. The 12 miler will be my longest run yet. Ever
3. Even though 12 miles is getting close to half a marathon, the week's total will be 24 which is still fewer miles than the marathon.

I'll feel pretty confident about the future of this endeavor if I can get through this week and still feel ok.

By the way, I'm doing better with the diet motivation (keeping up the carbs, cutting out the junky food). I think my subconcious is onto the idea that we're preparing for a serious challenge.

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