Wednesday, June 24, 2009

So it begins - St. George Marathon Training.

Wed. - June 24th - 101 days until the St. George Marathon in Utah. (See new count down counter on the right side of the blog.)

As previously reported, Monday, June 22nd was the official start date for training plan for the St. George Marathon. The plan I decided on will be similar to the plans that I have used in recent years, with one big change, this time I will be using a 9 day rotation plan. For the past few years, I have used the Furman plan a couple of times, after that, I keep the hard workouts from the Furman plan, but added 2 additional running days. So basically, the recent plans have been 3 hard workouts per week - track, long, and tempo or race (mostly race because I hate the tempo runs) with 2 easy running days, and 2 days of walking or biking. This time I will do a hard workout and then have 2 easy/active recovery days. So it would be Tempo, 2 easy days, hill repeats or track, 2 easy days, long run, 2 easy days. So I will have a long run every 9 days, a tempo every 9 days, and a hill or track workout every 9 days. I wanted to try this for a long time, but it's hard to coordinate with a running partner because your long run days are always different days of the week. My training this summer will be a lot of solo work (my running partner is pregnant - so excited for her) so it will be the perfect time to try the 9 day rotation. I think I will like it. I love the hard workouts. The 2 days of recovery will help me to be fresh for my next hard workout, and I will be anxious to run hard. The other big change will be consistent, true tempo runs. Not being a fan of the tempo, I have used racing to sub for my tempo runs. While racing has helped me tremendously, the 5k racing is not a true marathon tempo run, the pace is too fast for a true marathon tempo run. So this time, I will still do some racing, but I will be sure to do consistent tempo runs.

Week 1 - 30 miles
Monday - day 1 - 5 miles with 3 tempo miles. South LA - Have I mentioned the humidity in South LA - it's crazy - in the southeast in general for the past 4-5 days the heat index has been well over 100 everyday. This is not typical for June, more like August. I learned several years ago (the hard way, of course) that hydration is the most important part of trying to have a good summer run. So Monday morning, after driving out to drop waters along my route (a pain yes, worth it, yes) I started my run around a little before 7:30 am, already too hot. With the extreme heat, I make sure to hydrate every 20 minutes, so this basically interrupted my tempo run. I ran a 1 mile warm-up (w/u), then 1 mile of my tempo, and then stopped for water. I started back with 2 miles left for the tempo, and then 1 mile cool down (c/d). It was going about as well as can be expected for day 1 of the program and the heat, but about 2.5 into the tempo, when you are just trying to finish, I had to make a left hand turn. I make the turn and look down the lane and see a garbage truck. Have to finish the run, have to follow the garbage truck, not good. Finally, I was able to pass the truck and finish the tempo. Had some more h20 and finished the 5 miles. Although the tempo was interrupted by my water break, the water takes priority. Finished with 5 minutes of stretching doing several yoga poses. (tempo miles - 8:36, 8:24, 8:28)

Overall, good day, happy to be back in training. For me, the training is the best part. I am not a great racer(I love the racing, it's just not my strongest part), but I really get into the training. As you will see, I like to get very technical about my workouts. It keeps me entertained.

Tues - all the way to Gulf Shores, AL today. If you have every tried to run in Gulf Shores, I think it's the most humid place that I run, even worse than South LA. I started the run at 7:45 pm and I ran along Beach Blvd. to what we have always called "The Bunny Rd" (rabbits come out in the grass, late in the evening - named "the bunny road when we were kids - just a few years ago, ya know, ha ha). I ran a 5 mile loop with 2 water stops (around 9;30 pace), and then a few minutes of stretching. It was 90 degrees when I started, no telling what the heat index was, but overall it was a good run. I ran a lot of later morning runs in getting ready to run The Renaissance Half Marathon on June 13th. That "heat training" is really paying off now. I feel like I am very well adjusted to the heat and I have high hopes of being able to run a little faster in the heat, later this summer.

Today, was an easy walking day. I walked for 30 minutes in Gulf Shores, with my sister, Linde. After the walk, we packed up, and started the trip back home. So this evening I had to start catching up on work, watering all of my parched plants, now to the important stuff - catching up on email, fb, twitter and blogging. Looking forward to Thurs. run. We call it "The Billboard Run" - it's a 3/4 mile series of ugly hills on a dirt/sandy road. It's always tough. More to come.......


Jennifer said...

Sounds like you have a good handle on your plan! It's good to see the walking in there. The more I get into this the more I am convinced people do too much, me included! Have fun!

Happy Feet 26.2 said...

Yep - I am sure that I have the "do too much tendency, but I am very careful about recovery days, and thankfully, so far, I have had a VERY low injury rate, so I think I do ok. Do I need to run 30 miles per week, going up to 50, probably not, but this is my hobby and I want to try to get to one more level before age becomes a huge issue. So for me, I will be hard at it for the next 2-4 years. I still have a crazy idea that I might be able to qualify for Boston. Do I have the talent to get there, not sure, but I will be working on getting the final answer. Enjoying the journey in the mean time.