Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Shamrock Marathon and 2:38:48.

"You're moving at a pretty good pace there, sir," a guy standing out on his front lawn said to me today as I ran up the steep aspen hill yet a third time. I was in the middle of a 10 mile run that started from Lake Needwood and was running up aspen hill which is a good hill not far from the intersection of Veirs Mill road. I was actually not moving that fast, at least didn't feel so anyways. It was cool out and it's been nice to run with a t shirt and feel comfortable.

Today I registered for the Shamrock Marathon in Va Beach which is on March 21, 2010. This date gives me 5 solid months to prepare after Marine Corps. This marathon is where I hold my current PR: 2:38:48, back in 2005. I am so sick of that PR. Of course, I am looking to lower that standard in Marine Corps on Oct 25. Breaking 2:40:00 in 2005 was huge for me. I would love to break 2:30:00 on the flat Shamrock course this time.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

September 28, 29 and the U2 concert

On Monday, Sept 28, I drove to Swain's Lock on the Towpath and ran 10 miles. On Tuesday, I ran 11 miles on the hilly backroads near my hometown. I went to the U2 concert in Landover on Tuesday night and had a blast. It was my Birthday present from Beth, and we had a wonderful time. My brother Jono and his Bandmember and friend Robbie also came. I know this is a running blog but...U2 is amazing live. The Edge's guitar sounded so clear and the band simply lifts you off your feet into the realm of fantastic music. It is truly great for what all U2 and Bono have done for the World. They are not only rockstars, they are a group symbolizing and initiating a global movement of improvement around the world. Obama was also at the concert, which Bono announced his thanks to him. Well, I'm tired now from all the standing, dancing and screaming at the top of my lungs, and on top of that the rising mileage creeping up and up...

Train hard now, rest, then RACE.


Sunday, September 27, 2009

Knee pain gone

My knee pain is gone finally. I did 35 miles last week, and I think on top of the previous low mileage week I am well recovered and ready to move up the mileage again and get ready to peak for the marathon. I am hoping to reach very high mileage for the next 2 weeks before I lower it again for the last 2 weeks before the marathon. That's all for now..and my 2010 race schedule is in the works..

Sunday, September 20, 2009

recovering and preparing the body and mind

After last week, on Monday when I set out for my run, I could barely shuffle/jog, and my left knee ached hard. I needed to recover. The two halfs that I ran last week did me in. I did a lot of walking this week, and ran very little(20 miles for the whole week-my lowest mileage since the week after my last marathon in May). It was boring and frustrating with all the walking, but I knew I had to do it in order to recover. I also did a lot of strength training this week. Today I ran 8 miles(the longest I've run all week) and my knee was significantly better, and I feel revived in my training. Rest is essential. Through only rest the body grows back stronger and can jump to a new level. I built a strong body all summer, with all the races I trained through and distance runs. I guess you could say my body finally felt the effects of everything I have been doing, so it was calling for some rest this week. This will gear my body and mind up for the upcoming Marine Corps Marathon in 5 weeks. All I have to do is get in some good quality long runs and mileage and I'll be good to go. The fitness is almost complete. I have thought long and hard about my Marathon goals for Oct, and it comes down to about a 2:34:00 for what I feel I am realistically capable of. I have also been planning my 2010 race schedule, but that won't be posted until after the marathon.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

2 half marathons in a week: 1:15/1:17

The two back to back half marathons I ran within a week were solid workouts in prep for the Marine Corps Marathon in 6 weeks. The first one(Va Beach) was more of a race than the second(The Parks). Today I felt a little of the soreness from Va Beach and ran the Parks at Marathon Race Pace. I would like to think this simulated the marathon in the sense that my legs had already run a hard half the week before and were not very well rested to run another half. I accomplished my goal(I wanted to be right around 1:17:00-ended up running 1:17:19) and felt very relaxed, despite my very achy legs. I would have liked to run faster at Va Beach, 1:15:32 just didn't seem up to my current potential..

I was tired today. I took a loooong nap this afternoon and it was great. I ended up cooling down after the run with Chris Bain who ran 1:16 and change today. I also bought new racing trainers today for the marathon and took a second run this afternoon in them for about 3.5 miles. Ended with 19.5 miles total for the day. The mileage this week was light, however, 45 miles. I am doing no more races until the Marathon. The next 3-4 weeks I am going to train very hard and push the mileage. This is the last push before tapering down for the Marathon the last few weeks.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Easy week and prep for Half Marathon(part 2) on Sunday

This week has been all easy runs. On Monday I took my first day off in over 6 weeks. I needed to recover after Va Beach. Tuesday I ran an easy 3.5 miles with my dog Mickey, Wednesday was an easy 6 miles, Thursday an easy 9 miles, and Friday an easy 7 miles. Half Marathon number 2(The Parks Half Marathon) is tomorrow morning. This is great prep for the marathon. If I can run 2 strong half marathons back to back within a week then it will be a new era of fitness for me. The Marathon is like running a half marathon, then repeating. It is a difficult distance because it is past 20 miles. 20 miles is hard, but the extra 10k calls for exerting some extreme effort and preparing your body to go hard AFTER 20 miles.

Monday, September 7, 2009

The Va Beach Rock N Roll Half Marathon

The gun went off, and I felt pretty good. Solid. I went out well and tucked in with a solid pack of 4 guys. One of them, John Piggott, a really good masters runner, would stay with me for most of the whole race. The early miles flew by, we hit Mile 1 in 5:23, Mile 2 in 5:33, and Mile 3 in 5:37. After Mile 4 (5:40), we caught a couple runners who started out ahead. This always feels great. Working together with a pack of guys and picking off runners. I was the leader of this pack for much of miles 1-8 before it broke up. Mile 5 was also a 5:40 split, and I split 5:35 for Mile 6. I hit the 10K in 34:46. The pack was still together. Mile 7 was yet another 5:40 split, and at this point 2 guys surged ahead from the pack, and I tried to stay as close to them as I could, but for some reason my body wasn't ready to push. I settled and found I was still running with John Piggott. I then just held 5:50 pace for miles 8-11. John and I worked together and talked briefly. He told me he was training for the Akron Marathon and I told him I was training for the Marine Corps Marathon. My 10 Mile split was 56:42(5:40 pace average). Miles 12-13 I struggled to maintain 6 Minute pace and John pulled ahead slightly at this point. I felt like I was jogging the last 2 miles, but I did not have anything in me to run hard at the same time. I still ended up fnishing in 1:15:32, a current best time for me since I've "revived" my running in 2007, and was the 29th male finisher.

All in all, I had a great weekend at Va Beach and am not dissapointed with my performance. I have to be patient, as Beth tells me, the times will come, and again the Goal Race is the Marine Corps Marathon. After the race, Beth and I ate a very delicious brunch at Pocahontas Pancakes. If you ever want to eat at a great breakfast place in Va Beach, then Pocahontas is a must. The service is amazing too. It was great Beth came with me and cheered me on this weekend. We both missed Ashwin though, who loves Pocahontas Pancakes.

Decent week of mileage: 63 miles

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Slow and Easy Running

Today and yesterday I ran really slow and easy. I did 9 miles yesterday at Needwood again and today ran only 4 miles. It's good for my legs at this point to absorb all of the training I have been doing and to get super fresh legs for Sunday's race. Beth and I are excited to go to the beach again. I like VA beach a lot. Good food, and the races are always a blast. Although I have run the Shamrock Marathon once(my PR), and the Shamrock Half twice, I have never done the Rock N Roll Half before, so I am way pumped and excited for this weekend.