Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Marathon Training - Week 1

Total Miles: 30.4
Long Run: 14 miles

It's been 3 years since my last standalone marathon. That doesn't count Ironman Lake Placid 2 years ago because, well, those 26.2 miles are vastly different than the 26.2 miles you do without the swim and bike. And the training is vastly different.

I thought I might "chronicle" my training for my 19th (or 21st, depending on how you look at it) marathon here. It will be interesting to see how it goes, and if I can successfully stick to my plan and come out the other end satisfied with my effort. 

I have 14 weeks to get ready for Houston. I would love a 4-hour marathon. My body and the training I have been able to do to this point tell me that likely is not possible this time. The training plan I am following, however, accommodates my need for more recovery time and easy miles, but it also includes interval work, hill repeats, tempo runs, pace runs, and the like. Total mileage will max out around 40, and I'll do three 20-mile runs. (I have a "fun" run planned for that last 20-miler.)

This whole thing is an experiment. It's the first time in many, many years that I have trained myself for a marathon. It's the first time I've done a marathon while having to manage my Hashimoto's. It's the first time I've done a marathon as an officially over-the-hill person (got the word from my doctor just a couple of weeks ago).

I'm playing a lot of it by ear, using my heart rate monitor for some guidance, and being flexible with what I need to do to say healthy.

Week 1 went perfectly. I managed all five runs, including a set of hill repeats and a 20-minute tempo run. The 14-miler was done with run/walk intervals and was hard, but ended up being better than I had anticipated. 

I decided to do the long runs as run/walk (right now, 10 minutes running/30 seconds walking) because it occured to me that my most successful marathons in the last 10 years were run/walk. In the last few, I ended up falling apart at the end because, I believe, I attempted to run most of the entire marathon. So, no more of that. Run/walk will also help me recover more quickly from the long stuff.

The last 3 marathons I pretty much trained for and ran by myself. This time, I have running partners. We are committed to training together, at least the long runs, whenever we can. And I'm kind of excited for when we actually run the marathon. I hope that we can stay together for the entire race. The last time I did that was 10 years ago. (Egads.)

The first run of Week 2 is today. Just an easy 3 miler with some cadence drills. Need to work on my fast feet. 

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