Marathon Plan Week 23 of 24

There are just 14 days until the big day. I planned to run 20 miles today. That did not happen. I did get 18 done and can only hope that it is enough. Honestly, at this point, I’m in great shape to run a half-marathon. I am just not quite ready to face the full 26.2 miles but I will do it none-the-less. The reason I only eked out 18 miles is because I’m an idiot. There was a 9 mile race near my house this AM that I went to do so that I could run 9 of the 20 miles in a group. The problem with this is that it was an interesting running club race where they have you start at different times so that in theory everyone finishes at the same time. So, for 9 miles, the really fast runners started running 25 to 45 minutes after the start. Like the other runs I’ve done with this group, it was an out and back course. What made this interesting was that when the fast runners crossed my path I was a few miles ahead of them (i.e. not me at mile 12 while they were at mile 18). Given that I started about 10 minutes after the official start, I knew there was this sea of swift people behind me. Thus, rather than sticking to my long slow run pace, I sped up because “they” were chasing me. So I finished the 9 miles in 87 minutes which is a superb time for me. My goal time was about 95 minutes. My husband ran this with me and finished about 4 minutes faster than I did. He started a few minutes after I did and worked to make sure that he would “catch” me. He did at about mile 7. This meant was that my husband was done for the day after the race. He’d planned to help me knock-out some more of the miles after the race but it just didn’t happen. He wanted to get home, eat, shower, nap, watch a movie, etc. It’s his birthday today. I certainly can’t blame him for wanting to enjoy it.

The next 9 miles took me about an hour and 50 minutes. My legs were tired from running too quickly on the first 9 miles. I took a bunch of E-caps electrolyte capsules but I still cramped up badly about mile 17. So since 18 miles was the minimum I could sleep with today, I hobbled out the last mile and stopped. I will say, the first 9 miles was great. I just felt good. Also, in keeping with my idiot thinking today, I ran the 18 miles in brand new, never run in before, shoes. I tried to swap them out at the 9 mile mark but the old shoes were hurting. I went to a local running store where they videotape you running on a treadmill and keep putting you in different shoes until your stride is anatomically correct. I’m now in Asics 2110 running shoes. I’ve never worn Asics before; they are a lot less cushioned than I am used to but my knees feel good. I also have no blisters. I guess these are the shoe for me now.

And now, I have 13 blissful days of tapering before the marathon. On the plan for this week:

  • Monday: Off
  • Tuesday: 50 minutes Tempo Run with 30 minutes at threshold pace
  • Wednesday: Strength
  • Thursday: Lactate Intervals 44 minutes total with 4 x 3 minutes @ VO2 max pace, 3 minute active recoveries
  • Friday: Alternate Cardio 35 minutes
  • Saturday: Optional Foundation Run 35 minutes; Strength
  • Sunday: Long Run 1 hour 30 minutes (Hal Hidgon plan has an 8 or 12 mile here)