Last Long Run Before the Marathon

Today was the last long run before the marathon on February 14, 2010. We were to run the final 20 miles of the marathon. We’ve already run this path a few times. The pacers were to run with us too. I arrived before 6 AM (an especially early start) and we were to run between 3.0-3.5 hours but no more. I met my 4:00 pacer. Several of my running class buddies were also there with the pacer including Alvin, Angie, Chase, and Diego. We were to warm-up from Rogue to the Mopac bridge (the Rock) before starting MPG. We started and it seemed that our pacer was running faster than 9:10 during the warm-up. I cranked up my iPod and had it talking in my ears throughout. At the Rock Angie showed me her Garmin saying that the pace had been 8:36 – what! So our pacer was not doing his job at least during the warm-up – ugh. So we started out down Lake Austin Blvd and I stayed with the pacer and group. Things were OK, and I think we were running on pace, but without any mile markers or my own Garmin I couldn’t be sure. Right on to Entfield where the rolling hills begin, and then left on Exposition. At the first water stop the pacer stopped too long IMHO so I did my typical thing and took off early. It was the last time I saw the pacer for the rest of the run. I knew the route and when we got to Great Northern I stopped for water and two cookies at the ball park. I took my time there, and Angie and Chase arrived just as I was leaving. Oh, Oh. They are typically faster than me. Later some of the runners got confused on how to get to Red River and I accidentally followed them on 47th, but quickly got to 48th and Red River. However when returning back to Duval on 41st street I saw that some runners had taken a shortcut and skipped Red River altogether by heading directly down Duval. Somehow I caught up to Angie and Diego on Duval at the water stop (weren’t they behind me?!) and I assumed they had taken the shortcut. Instead of stopping I ran past them and kept going through campus. Am I competitive or what? I was getting pretty fatigued around the capitol but kept hoofing it down Congress to 8th. I thought about calling it quits at the “finish” then but I kept going all the way back to Rogue. I thought it would best simulate the real marathon. When I got back to Rogue my watch read 3:21. Phillip was there smiling like a Cheshire-cat. Angie and Diego arrived a few minutes later. At home I plotted my path and got 22.5 miles. Given that information I calculated my pace was 8:53 minutes/mile and this included a long stop at the Rock, and on Great Northern. Am I happy with the result? Well yes. Since I still have about 4 more miles to complete to get to 26.2 do I have it in me? I think so. Do I trust the pacer? Hmmm, that’s to be seen.

3M Half Marathon

I got up early to avoid the traffic, and arrived at 5:40 AM. I sat in the car with the heat on until 6:15 and then did a 1.5 mile warm-up. It was windy out. While waiting for the start I kept worrying that I had on too much clothing, but the temperature and wind felt especially chilly to me. When it was all over the two layers, gloves and cap were fine. I listened to my iPod the entire time to help distract me. The organizers had to delay the 6:45 start for 30-45 minutes, because some barriers blew over along the course. We finally started and I tried, really tried, to maintain MGP for the first 8 miles. After that we were allowed to speed up if we wanted to – if we had it in us. The miles were: 8:24, 9:24 (slowed down too much, so sped up again), 8:35*, 8:35*, 8:03 (downhill), 9:14 (water), 8:26, 8:34*, 8:35*, 8:23, 7:48, 7:48, 7:31, 0:46 [* forgot to press timer, so halved split]. I know, I know, I went out too fast and just couldn’t slow down – sheesh. Near the end, when going down Duval I cranked it up. The wind was at my back too. I was happy that I had the energy at the end and did not break my form. Also no cramps or pains. At the end I was trying to break 1:50, but completed in 1:50:11. What’s strange is that I should be ecstatic with my time and my energy level, but I’m slightly bummed because I didn’t break 1:50 and I wasn’t even racing especially early on when I was trying to run at MGP. Final pace was 8:25 minute/mile. Overall it was a good race.
Update: Oh two more things, I ended 8th in my age 60-64 group, and today my name was in the paper because I was a top 10 finisher for my age group. Very nice!

Running log week of 2010-01-24

01/24 – Sunday – 3M Half Marathon – 13.1 miles – 1:50:11
01/25 – Monday – Neighborhood – 4 miles – 40 minutes (no core and no rollers, no tightness, good run)
01/26 – Tuesday – Class Amacattack – 10 miles – 120 minutes (core and rollers in morning, thermolyte before class)
01/27 – Wednesday – Neighborhood – 6 miles – 60 minutes (core and rollers, no tightness, easy and good run)
01/28 – Thursday – Neighborhood – 11 miles – 110 minutes (core and rollers, no tightness, good run)
01/29 – Friday – off (no core and no rollers)
01/30 – Saturday – End of Marathon Course 1/ Pacers – 22.5 miles – 3:21:11 (no core and no rollers, good run, but I didn’t have much left at the end)
Weekly mileage: 66.6 miles
Shoe mileage: 165.0 miles

Running log week of 2010-01-17

01/17 – Sunday – Neighborhood – 8 miles – 80 minutes (core and roller, no right leg tightness, light tightness back of left knee)
01/18 – Monday – Neighborhood – 4 miles – 40 minutes (core and roller, no right leg tightness, light tightness back of left knee)
01/19 – Tuesday – Class (Ruth’s ladder) – 6.5 miles – 90 minutes (core and roller, medium to severe tightness left leg hamstring)
01/20 – Wednesday – Neighborhood – 6 miles – 60 minutes (core and roller, no tightness)
01/21 – Thursday – Neighborhood – 11 miles – 120 minutes (no core and no roller, no tightness, burning sensation at back of right ankle, took aleve, iced it, still burning afterwards, glad I’m off tomorrow)
01/22 – Friday – off (core and roller, right ankle burning has lessened)
01/23 – Saturday – Long Run (Town Lake from Rogue to MoPac and back, no Longhorn Dam, had two salt tabs before & breakfast, no tightness or burning – yeah!, tried hard to slow down, ran faster than MGP, ugh, pace 8:53 overall with stops) – 9 miles – 1:20
Weekly mileage: 44.5 miles
Shoe mileage: 98.4 miles

4x2000m Class Workout

Ran 2000m or 5 laps of the track at 15K pace [8:30/M or 2:07 per lap] with a 1 lap recovery times 4 for the advanced runners – that’s me. Here’s what happened. The first set: 2:02, 2:07, 2:06, 2:09, 2:10 for 10:34. The second set: 2:10, 2:05, 2:07, 2:05, short?. The third set: 2:05, 2:08, 2:07, 2:07, short?. The fourth set: 2:06, 2:05, 2:08, 2:05, 2:06 for 10:30. I am amazed that I wasn’t able to count right for the middle two sets. I was brain dead for no good reason, and I was keeping track on my fingers, but not very well indeed. Regardless of this flub I felt good for the laps that I did run and the pace that I was able to maintain.

Running log week of 2010-01-10

01/10 – Sunday – Neighborhood – 8 miles – 80 minutes (core and roller, no tightness)
01/11 – Monday – Neighborhood – 4 miles – 40 minutes (core and roller, no tightness)
01/12 – Tuesday – Class (1 mile warm-up, 4 x 2000m @ 15K w/ 400m recovery, 1 mile cool-down) – 8.4 miles – 85 minutes (core and roller, light to medium tightness)
01/13 – Wednesday – Neighborhood – 6 miles – 60 minutes (core and roller, no tightness)
01/14 – Thursday – Neighborhood – 11 miles – 110 minutes (core and roller, no tightness, but light muscle pull on back of left knee up to hamstring – argh! I’m glad I have tomorrow off.)
01/15 – Friday – off (core and roller)
01/16 – Saturday – South Austin Ramble – 16.5 miles – 154 minutes (no core or roller, immediately felt muscle on back of left thigh, but no tightness – maybe because I was worrying about this newly developed ache, however, I ran with it trying to keep it loose, overall pace 9:20/mile – dunno if I did MGP for the last three miles but I tried throughout to be consistent.)
Weekly mileage: 53.9 miles
Shoe mileage: 53.9 miles

New Shoes

A week or so ago there was a shoe sale at Rogue and I bought a new pair of running shoes. I started using them this week on Monday 01/11 for my 4-mile run. I had started using the previous pair the week of 11/15. Since then I’ve kept a shoe mileage record on my weekly log and I accumulated 410.0 miles on that pair.

Running log week of 2010-01-03

01/03 – Sunday – Neighborhood – 8 miles – 90 minutes (core and roller, unknown tightness)
01/04 – Monday – Neighborhood – 4 miles – 40 minutes (core and roller, no tightness)
01/05 – Tuesday – Class – 8 miles – 80 minutes (no core or roller, light tightness)
01/06 – Wednesday – Neighborhood – 6 miles – 60 minutes (no core or roller, no tightness)
01/07 – Thursday – Neighborhood – 11 miles – 110 minutes (core and roller, light tightness, breathing deeply at start, very cold and windy, fighting wind on outbound – ugh!, running w/ wind on inbound – nice!)
01/08 – Friday – off
01/09 – Saturday – Long Run (2×8@MGP) – 18.76 miles – 2:53 (no core or roller, light tightness, breathing deeply at start, screwed up and cut off about 1.24 miles on return leg – ugh, [mgp outbound miles: 1 missed, 2 17:54, 3 9:00, 4 8:31, 5 8:34, 6 8:49, 7 9:03, 8 8:37; mgp inbound miles: 1 8:34, 2 8:44, 3 skipped ugh!, 4 short! 5:21, 5 9:10, 6 8:43, 7 8:51, 8 8:25] overall total pace 9:13 min/mile)
Weekly mileage: 57 miles
Shoe mileage: 410.0 miles

Last 19ish Miles of Marathon

It was colder this morning than expected at 28 degrees F so I put on long-johns and tights at home. The group took off at about 6:30 AM. During the first 2-3 miles my ankle was tight again. Ugh! People would pass me especially some of my running classmates. I just couldn’t run any faster. I was struggling. This tightness really messes with my mind. I was thinking about quiting the class and skipping the marathon, but I kept going. At the first water stop I was just beginning to feel a bit better. My ankle was loosening up. I didn’t stop, because I wanted to pass my running mates. However, shortly they came blasting by me and still I couldn’t keep up with them and they went ahead. However, I kept them in sight this time. Finally around Northcross Mall one stopped for a bio-break, and I passed the other two. I kept going now with my ankle not bothering me. Taking the turn to head south I stopped for water at Arroyo Seco, and the two of them caught up to me, but I started out early and it was the last time I saw them. I won’t say it was an easy run, but I just kept digging deeper and getting it done. I ran and ran and ran. Down Duval, through Campus, up MLK, around the Capital, and down Congress. I thought about walking after where the marathon finish line would be, but I kept going. I kept running. I completed 19.6736 miles (based on Gmaps Pedometer) in 3:10.13 or 9:08/mile. What especially surprised me was my final pace is the speed I need to run the entire marathon in 6 weeks. Now if I can only figure out this tightness.