Saturday, February 19, 2005

Easy on the keys, hard on the feet

While I am able to dispel any rumors of being frozen in place, my excuses for lack of blogging are either not worthy to be typed or would take too many hours to compile. As for running, to this I have been faithful. Heavily relying upon the social support of Marc & Eric, the training has continued but the revolution has not been televised.

Since my last posting the weekly mileages have been:

74.2 (including tomorrow's long run with Marc).

Note here something lacking from other consecutive weeks: consistency. Finally, I fell into a groove of constant mileage increases that were sustainable and injury free. Since my last injury during the fledgling days of this year, the miles have increased but not to the levels that I have had before: namely the 85 mile week. I have put in during this training cycle 4 of these 85 mile weeks. Yet each week (or 2) at this level was followed by a 25 mile week do to exhaustion or injury. I guess that is a sign I just wasn't at that level. However, I have been feeling very good with the recent mileages and feel like all of the training has been quality. Therefore, I am very happy with the lower mileage/higher quality workouts. Perhaps by the end of this training cycle I'll see 80+ miles again but when I do, I want it to be a gradual climb rather than the spikes they have been in the past.

So what's new? Speed is new. I have completed the 4 weeks of hill workouts (2 per week or 1 if time would not allow) and now I am on 4 weeks of speedwork. Of course, I am using a version of the "poor man's track". It comes in 2 varieties: .3 miles and .5 miles. This track of course is the only 2 streets in Eastport that are relatively flat and long enough for speed. Eric has been pushing me through these workouts. Currently we are doing the half milers on Tuesdays and the .3 milers on Fridays. Doing 2 sets of 3 on the .3 milers and 3 sets of 2 on the half milers. Hoping to increase the reps as I improve.

The .3 miler (in case you're wondering why I am not doing quarters - it's because my car odometer only does tenths of a mile) times are around 1:26 - 1:28 per repeat with a 3 minute interval (I jog back to the start). The half mile times ranges from 2:45 - 3:00 depending on the direction the repeat is in. Unfortunately, this stretch of pavement runs north / south which means an icy wind is usually blowing at you off of the water during one direction of your repeats and is at your back on the other.

Come March, I'll be adding tempo runs to the mix to get some sense of my ability for Boston. I am still at a loss as to the pace I should set/expect during the race. While I originally set a goal for 2:45, I will not attempt that pace if my training doesn't concur. I've had enough of marathon crashing. On the other hand, I do want to run to the best of my ability in an even fashion so my time trials should give me some sort of indication.

There is hope for warmer weather at some point. While the nasty subzero before wind chill cold has seemed to have passed, some nagging reminders keeping popping around. This morning's 11.6 miler was chilly at 10F with a wind chill reading of -2F. Trying to talk gets difficult in these temperatures. Tomorrow's 20 will be cold and Monday will threaten snow. Tuesday's speed will probably be in the snow. If it's nice in April I won't know what to do.

So I am alive and well. Feeling strong and fast (sort of). Optimistic about the remaining 6 weeks of training and what'll do for me. So here we go. Perhaps the revolution will be televised after all...