April 24, 2008
Anyway, lately my runs have been ad hoc, running “as I feel”, based on how my hamstring holds up. I’ll usually just go, start at any pace I happen to be able to run. I don’t even warm up. I’ve been running so slowly lately that it feels like warm up pace anyway. I started my run 7 mile run Today in this manner, starting my timer as I took off, sans warm up. I was feeling better then I had been, and Monday’s run went well, so I thought it would be a good time to start incorporating some faster miles into my runs. So it was during that first mile that I decided it would be a warm-up and the run would be a progressive workout. I’d run the first mile easy (came in around 9:30), run the next 3 in an 8 min pace, the two after that in a 7:30 pace, and see where I’m at in the last mile, and decide then where to go for another 7:30 or start to back off into cool down mode. I pretty much did just that. I slowed a little in the 2nd 7:30-pace mile, but I ended up running the last mile in about a 7:40, and cooled down afterwards. I didn’t record exact splits, as I was kind of making it up as I went along, but my overall time was a 56:06, indicating that I did indeed make up for the 9:30 warm up mile.
Sometimes with an injury, you carry some residual fitness that you acquired before getting injured, and then when you recover from the injury you bounce back like you haven’t missed a step. I was hoping against all hope & common sense that this was the case for me, and that I’d just have to recover from the hamstring injury, and I’d run a good half marathon. After all, I would have been tapering most of this period anyway. I’ve heard stories of runners getting hurt before their big race, forcing them to take it easy, and then running well as a result. I think this run indicates that this won’t be the case for me. My dearth of intense workouts over the past month due to injury has caused my fitness to dwindle. My lactic acid threshold has certainly worsened. The 7:30 pace felt a lot harder then it should. I had been cruising at a 7 pace, no problem, before the injury. I was hoping to break a 7 pace at the Frederick Half and be in good position to build toward a Boston Qualifier.
While I have low expectations for the Frederick Half, I’m not completely distraught. I’m confident that my hamstring will heal up and I’ll be in good shape to start a push towards a BQ. In fact, it may help me. I’ll be humbled enough to not be as gung-ho, but my success earlier this Spring will give me motivation to persevere.
April 23, 2008
Some recent history, then what I’m doing currently.
I ran the Baltimore Marathon last October, where I ran a PR 3:54:59, then the JFK 50 miler in November where I also ran a PR (10:55:47). It’s been a while since I really focused on the marathon, and I think that I really haven’t lived up to my potential. My PR in a 10 mile is a 1:10:53, so many race prediction techniques say I should be running a much faster marathon. I decided to dedicate 2008 to doing just that, with the ultimate goal being to qualify for Boston (3:10 or faster). In the Spring, I’d run shorter races: The Cherry Blossom 10 Miler and the Frederick Half Marathon, and get my speed back to the level it was in college. I’d take little time off before building back to the marathon distance for the Fall. I came up with a program last fall to try to pull this off. This will be unveiled in a later entry.
So that brings us to this Spring. Until about a month ago, my training was going phenomenally. I was running some of the best training runs of my life. A quick sample:
8 miles in 1:03:13
8 miles in 0:59:49
10 miles in 1:13:36
10 miles in 1:11:49
Again, all of these were training runs. Normally, I’d be happy running these kind of times in RACES. In particular, the last 10 mile run. I was actually trying to break my 10 mile PR there (running faster in a training run then in a race…unheard of for me!), but came a minute short. Nevertheless it was a spectacular training run. It’s been all downhill from there. I felt some tightness in my groin, glutes, and most of all in my hamstring toward the end of the run. I thought it was just normal soreness. It was not (likely something caused from lifting weights pretty hard two days prior). I kept running on it and my performance just kept dropping. It became harder to run fast or long. I ended up dropping out of the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler, trying to give myself some time to heal up before the Frederick Half Marathon. Here I am, a week an a half before the Frederick Half, and I’m trying to put something together. Don’t have high hopes for the race, but I think I’ve done what I wanted to do this Spring, albeit not in a race. I’ve proven to myself that I can run at speeds that I haven’t in a long time. I also think that my program has worked effectively, but I now know of some adjustments I need to make.
April 23, 2008
Hello everyone. This is my second stab at blogging, my first was on livejournal: http://spaceemu.livejournal.com/. Although that blog had a lot of info on running, this one will almost exclusively focus on it. I’ll have some info on my own running, of course, but I’ll also have a lot of running advice and info on running performance science. For more info on me and this blog, just check out the about page.