Sunday, August 06, 2006

Chicago countdown: Week 12 complete, 76 days to go

I've been reading about different philosophies surrounding how you do long runs. My friend Frankie has been trying to find his pace, saying he may have run his last one too fast. I think i've found my pace, but sometimes I feel like I have energy to burn at the end (i'm lucky, not having reached the 20 milers yet).

Yesterday, while reading some more running stuff at the beach, I read about some training programs that ask you to run long the usual slow pace, about 45 seconds to 90 seconds slower than your marathon pace. But, the difference was to pick it up in the last quarter of the run. It wasn't the first time I've read this.

Today, I ran out and back to the Beaches, out the door at 6:40 a.m. and hit the Beach just as a volleyball competition was taking place. I took my iPod shuffle with me for the first time in a long time and I felt it interfere with me looking for the right pace. I slowly got used to it and sometimes took the headphones off for some songs.

As I've said before, i run my long runs according to heart rate and i've been learning what keeps it down: a steady slow pace, taking hills with less vigour, hydrating often. With about 4 miles to go, i decided to pick up the pace, letting my heart rate get up just barely above the 81% range. It was still a step away from comfortably hard, but it definately was not easy.

It felt good. I had energy left for picking it up that I felt I was slowly emptying the tank. My fastest split was 8:10 mile (5:00 km) and I ran a negative split for the run, just barely. 26K (16 miles).

I fuelled up at the halfway mark and now I'm considering whether I should fuel up properly before my long runs. How many gels should I be consuming If i'm doing a 20 miler? Unknown.

The week's over and I'm just a few miles from the big five-oh. I'm feeling good about the training and the cooler weather has provided a huge mental boost.

Weekly total: 76K (47 miles)
Time run this week: 6:38:42
Year to date: 1,502K (933 miles)
Marathon training to date: 450K (280 miles)


jellypepper said...

what made you bring music with you today? i know what you mean about the weather.

good work this week. you're hitting a psychological milestone next week! me too... half-marathon distance next weekend. wheeee!

Frankie said...

I take a gel every 45 minutes. Today's flavor was mocha - I will avoid this flavor in favor of vanilla from now on. Interesting decision with the ipod...I haven't done that in ages!! Must've been weird.