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Showing posts from September, 2007

Hands On House 1/2 Marathon Report - 2007

I had to add the "2007" tag since I actually did this same race a year ago... Today, I ran it 13 pounds lighter and almost exactly 20 minutes faster, finishing in 1:34:32... the official time had me 4 seconds longer, but it wasn't a chip-start, only a chip finish. Official results are here. Too tired for a cohesive report, so here are random thoughts:

1) I was tapered for this, so it's probably a good indication of true fitness... I'd been working really hard, so I used most of this week as a recovery week, cancelling my two cross-training days, and not doing any speedwork. This gave me a very fresh race to guage my fitness for the upcoming Harrisburg marathon.

2) I came in 5th out of 35 in my age group and 28th out of 351 overall - definitely a nice surprise.

3) Though my splits were mostly on pace, the 11th mile was disappointing, a 7:59 buried in mostly 7-7:20's --- and that 7:59 wasn't too very uphill, either. Hopefully, I have more stamina than that.

4) …

The Future's So Bright I Gotta Wear Shades...

So I've been on the hunt for new prescription sunglasses for running for three reasons:

1.) The wife's new health insurance will buy me $250 worth of specs.
2.) My current shades are not made for sports (though they looks stylish enough).
3.) My current shades are about two prescriptions old.

I found a local dealer to bring in a pair of Adidas Gazelle's, which are highly recommended for runners. But I didn't realize how stupid prescription inserts would make them look (not to mention make them look like I had twice as many lenses to break).

I was about ready to leave but apparantly the optical chick is on commission and has a few bills to pay. She kept showing me pair after pair of very stylish - but unathletic - glasses until it finally registered that I wanted glasses that wouldn't rain sweat or break when they flew off my head during a 200 meter interval (hey, it could happen). Finally, she showed me a pair of Rec Specs MAXX 30's in dark blue and it was love at …

Just in time for fall sweeps...

I admit it: I'm a sucker for a good PR person, particularly one with a good product to push. This was in my e-mail box today:

Hello from NOVA, and thank you for the great service you provide to runners at Sweet Victory. We are reaching out to you because this fall NOVA will be premiering "Marathon Challenge," an inside look at what it takes to run the Boston Marathon. We think the show will be of great interest to your readers and hope that you will consider some type of inclusion about it on your blog.

Blah, blah, blah - I won't bore you with the rest of the copy of the press release, but this show looks awesome. Here's the YouTube trailer and I can't wait to watch the show, which premieres Tuesday, October 30 at 8:00 pm on most PBS stations:


Get Out of That Cubicle...

So it turns out tomorrow is National Run @ Work Day. Ironically, I have a rest day scheduled, though I might go romp around for a few miles, just to support the cause.

Today was my last "hard" workout for a while - a strong tempo effort with a 4 miles @ 7:15/mile in the middle of a warm-up/cool-down sandwich. I remarked to someone at work that I'm at one of those places where I feel quite fit, but quite liable to fall apart, so it's time to step back for a few days.

Saturday, I'm going for 13-15, but slow -- I may even opt for a County Park Trail Run. I'll keep things relatively light and relaxed going into next Saturday's Half Marathon. With an easy first four and last four but tough middle, I'm going to aim to go out at 7:10, look for 7:40 in the middle third and bring it in with 4 7:10's. That would bring me in at 1:36 - a 4 minute PR. Frankly, that might be aggressive, but I think I need to challenge myself to put a solid marathon goal down, and…

Finally Faster

It appears I'm making some progress.

Throughout the summer, I watched the mileage pile up, while my paces stayed the same (or even crept up a little). Though this is normal - I've read - it was also a bit disheartening.

Recent interval workouts are showing their benefits, though. At this point in the month (with more than 1/3 of it left to go), I'm 1 mile ahead of where I was in April - my previous peak fitness month, where I did a triathlon and 5k PR within a 2 week period. But more importantly, though I've run a mile further, I've done so 4 minutes faster. While that's only a scant 3 seconds per mile faster, 40 of those miles came on two 20 mile runs and I still have 1/3 of the month left to go.

With seven weeks until the marathon, that should be a good place to be.

"Does This Garmin Make Me Look Fat?" & Other Questions

Image
Runner's World says not to look at your watch when you're crossing the line. I didn't. I waited four steps. Unfortunately, so did the photographer.

Actually, there was one good pic from the Harrisburg pic I might buy if the vanity budget allows, but I'm waiting for the pic guys to finish uploading all of them.

I've been a bad blogger, but that's mostly 'cuz I've been such a rockstar at life the past few weeks... Well, except for the part where the rockstars party and sign autographs.

But to recap:
* Work has been insane. Big show next week. Big rebranding all month. Ten days from now, life returns to a manageable level of insanity.
* Kids settled into school. Wife settled into new job. Everything sane there - except kids start swim team tomorrow night. Commence unsettling (again).
* Marathon training going very well. I've pretty much made my own training program - using the harder long runs from the FIRST program, and the somewhat easier interval workout…

Harrisburg Half Marathon Race Report

So five days after deciding to race the Harrisburg Half Marathon, I did so.

Reasons:
1) With the same start/finish/parking situation and much of the same course as this November's full Marathon, it seemed to make sense.
2) Though I have another half scheduled at the end of the month, it's a rather hilly half, so I'm not sure how well my time from that will translate into my marathon program.

That being said, I was one week removed from a challenging 20 miles and my taper consisted of running 4 miles easy on Friday (rather than 6 miles tempo), so I wasn't particularly tapered.

I also struggled in my decision as to how to do the race. Though I wanted to pull a 1:36 half prior to my full marathon, I'm also hesitant to get injured or screw myself up from having a good week of training. At the same time, I didn't want to go as slow as my plan for this weekend called for (7:43 pace), so I decided to aim for breaking 1:40, which would be a 7:38 pace.

I also decided to go ou…

Twenty Miler #2

My marathon schedule is funny... the interval workouts remind me of what I am not (fast) and the long workouts remind me of what I am - capable of going for quite a while.

Sunday called for a 20 miler at 8:15-8:30 pace. Went with my neighbor for the first 5, though and - like neighbors will - we pushed the pace. I ended up @ 8:07 for the first five and kept it up to the mid-point.

At the mid-point, I bumped into another guy 13 miles into a 20 miler headed in my direction. We were going mostly the same pace, but ended up going around 7:57 for the next seven miles. After I left him, I hit the the 18 mile mark and realized I had a decent shot to average 8:00 for the whole run with a good last 2 miles. So I pulled out a 7:36 and a 7:44 and came in with six seconds to spare. Two days later, I'm a little more sore than I should be, but not too bad.

In other news, I think I'm running a half-marathon this weekend. The plan calls for 13 miles at 7:43 pace and wouldn't you know it, the…