Sunday, 16 September 2012

#82 Long, Long, Long

Sunday 16 September 2012. Over the hump and on our way.

This was week 8 (of 15) of training for NYC. That represents the median for those who know a thing or two about math and means we are now more than half-way through the training program. I ran a total of 167k (104 miles; my highest weekly total ever) during 9 individual runs on 7 days and according to 'Garmin Connect', I've run 685k in the past 30 days and have run 36 days in a row. I got tired just writing that.

I also ran my longest run today which totalled 37.2k and ran in just under 2hrs 42min. And although it was not an official part of the program and was in fact 2 separate runs of 4.2k and 33k with a 10min break in the middle, it felt entirely awesome and is a huge boost to my confidence moving forward. In the last k's I was doing some mental math and figured I maybe could have broken 3hrs for the full 42.2 had I any desire to do another 5k (I didn't!). I also tried a fantastic new energy gel that Doyle gave me. It was from 'Honey Stinger' and was an 'Acai Pomegranate Organic Energy Gel.' I highly recommend it. Kudos to the huge contingent of LB peeps who ran this one today. It was one of the biggest groups to date and everyone was running really well (and with only minimal complaints from Hiddleston).

To quickly summarize the entire week, it went a little like this: 21.1k on Mon; 28k on Tues (11am, 17pm); 20k on Wed including a 2 mile interval at HMP and "Toronto's toughest 5k XC race" in which I barely broke 20min and lost by a fraction of a second to Doyle during a final sprint to the finish; 28k on Thurs (11am, 17pm); 21.1k on Fri; 12k on Sat and 37.2k on Sunday. 167+k!

The start of the LB XC Championship race in Riverdale Park on Wed 12 Sept 2012. 
The sprint finish between Doyle and I at the end of XC. He won by a fraction of a second in 19:39.xx.
The week ahead will be greatly reduced in order to 'taper' for the Oakville Half next Sunday (23 Sept) where I hope to run a 1:15:xx. I'll alter the numbers in order to decrease volume (to 120k or so) but keep the frequency and intensity about the same. I'll also get to take the day off on Saturday!

Runners heading to NYC also got to know our bib and corral assignments this week. I will be running as #2228 and will be starting in the first wave (9:40 EST start), orange corral #2. Luckily, some of the other LB guys will be starting with me although not all of them. The 3 different corral colours take slightly different routes early in the race before coming together for good at 8 miles. I hope to run with Doyle for a majority of the race so we'll have to see what happens. There are still 7 weeks to go to race day but already the excitement is growing among our crew.

I'll have a much better idea after next weeks half whether I am on target to hit my goal of 2:34:xx (sub 2:35) in NYC and have set a subsequent goal of placing in the top 100 overall (last year a 2:37:24 took 100th spot). I figure breaking 1:15 at Oakville or Scotiabank will put me in a good position to break 2:35 and achieve my goal(s). However, NYC is a much more challenging course than both Scotiabank and Goodlife, my prior marathons so I won't be overly ambitious. There is much still to be seen and still much work to be done. My third and final goal is to have fun and enjoy the race experience and so no matter what happens on 04 Nov, I will succeed in some way (a few exceptions apply).

Finally, a huge congrats to Doyle for winning the inagural Milton (more than) Half-Marathon today (the course was a little longer than 21.1k) in a time of 1:16:12 (~1:15:30 at 21.1k)! And to Bellamy for 2nd place in the 5k (also longer than expected or desired). Seeing all the hard work, dedication and group camaraderie pay off is a tremendous reward and boost for our crew and I'll say again how proud I am of all my training partners. Keep it up everyone.

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