Marathon Training – Week 10

Half Way

Well, here I am at the halfway point in my training. The funny thing about marathon training is there really often isn’t a start date in the traditional sense because people don’t start from scratch, just deciding to start running on day one of training. They’ve been running already, otherwise they really wouldn’t be able to even do the first week of training successfully. In my case there was a number of months of running increasing distances as I recovered from my surgery. The surgery was in November of 2016. in December and January went from a cast to walking. Then I started my ramp-up to training.

  • Feb – 7.2 miles
  • Mar – 39.6 miles
  • Apr – 65.5 miles
  • May – 57.6 miles

Training started in June and the mileage doubled.

  • Jun – 120.8 miles
  • July – 140.1 miles

August is shaping up to be 150+ miles and I expect September to be the same since all my really long runs will be during those two months. October will be less since I will be tapering the mileage as the marathon nears.

Taking the bull by the horns on a HOT day with our Broken Arrow runners!


Racing and Time Trials
One of the important things to calculate in training to race any distance is what is your sustainable pace. To do this it’s good practice to do time trials or races at various distances over the course of your training. This is what I have done recently.

  • TU Track 1.5 mile time trial (July) – 11:41, a 7:45 pace. (very hot)
  • Maple Ridge 5K (May) –  24:50, a 7:55 pace. (humid and hot)
  • Bedlam Run 10K (Aug) – 54:37, an 8:38 pace. (good conditions)
  • Tulsa Run 15K (October, before surgery) 1:29:20, a 9:31 pace (I can extrapolate from how I am running post-surgery that I would probably be able to do this race closer to a 9:00 pace)

So, the only distance I haven’t raced recently is a 1/2 marathon. I am contemplating doing one in September just to complete the time trials and get a fuller picture of what I can do. Once I do that I will calculate what looks to be a sustainable marathon pace. Right now it looks like about a 10 minute mile, but I will wait until closer to the race to make a definitive decision on what pace I will run.

After the Bedlam 10K


That is it for now.  Feel free to ask any questions or give any comments you want!

In addition, those of you in Tulsa, our 15k running programs starts in less than 2 weeks. We will get you to the Tulsa Run and beyond! contact me if you are interested.

You can read the rest of the series here.

See you running,

Marty

 

 

 

 

Marathon Training – Week 9

Is Nothing Impossible?

You want to make a popular meme? Have it say ‘Nothing is impossible’. You will get a lot of people agreeing with you. But it’s a lie, many things are impossible. You can’t grow another foot taller if you are already grown up. You can’t eat 2 tons of food at one sitting. You can’t become a young child again once you are older. You can’t run 500 miles an hour.  Those things are impossible.

What that saying really means is this: things that you assume are impossible, but that are actually not impossible, can be accomplished if you set your mind to it. What or who decides it’s impossibility? You do. If you say it’s impossible, then it will be. But if you say it’s possible, then it may be.

I know this because I am a coach of long distance runners and a long distance runner myself. I started running when a new co-worker of mine turned out to be a casual runner. She would run at lunchtime and I decided to join her. At first I ran about 100 yards, then walked the rest of the way around the part of the river near where we worked. I was amazed she could run the whole 2.75 miles. It seemed impossible to me.  I eventually was able to run the entire way with her, but it probably took about 6 months or so.

Making the impossible possible takes time.

My first race, a 5k in 2008


Stretching Further

As you know I have been doing a lot of stretching, trying to get more limber and flexible. And it is working. I am able to move and stretch much farther than I ever have before. I never thought it was impossible, I just thought it was going to be difficult, and it has been. But I have stuck with it and am making progress.

Here is something that has made it more difficult than you may realize. When I was 18 years old I was burned on 70% of my body in a boat explosion. My back, the back of my arms and my legs were burned the worse, though much of my stomach and chest got it too. The reason I am telling you this is because of the scars. I have scars that travel the length of my arms all the way to the bottom of my back with no break. The resulting scars are very tight and that means my ability to stretch is limited by them. When I bend over and touch my toes (which I can do now!) it feels like I am one giant rubber band stretched to its limits and wants to snap back. Not letting it snap back can be painful. Not terribly, but painful nonetheless.

I knew I could increase my flexibility if I worked to do so. I knew my muscles could be stretched further.  What I didn’t know is how far my scars would stretch. They are not like muscles or tendons. They are hard, fibrous scar tissue that does not want to stretch. How far can I stretch them? What is possible and what is impossible? There is only one way to find out, and that is to do the stretching.

Making the impossible possible is only found out in the doing.

Burn Scars – Left Arm, unstretched and stretched


Goals

I did a 14 miler this past Saturday. I did 2 miles with one of the half marathon groups, H2, and then turned around so I could be back at the store in time to lead Pathways. The fastest marathon group, M1, just happened to be passing us when I did the turn around so I joined them. Ok, I joined them for about a half a mile then I couldn’t keep up and had to slow down (they are wicked fast). But even with the slowing down I was still doing close to 9 minute miles back to the store. . At that point I still had over 10 miles to go, only 5 of which I would have company. Those 10 were at a very reasonable pace for me, but the fact I had pushed so hard at on an early mile or two really affected my abilities at the end.

What that taught me, which all runners learn again and again (because we are both a forgetful and optimistic bunch) is that going out too fast in a training run or a race will come back to bite you.

Making the impossible possible demands discipline.


As I write the temperatures have dropped 10-15º. A high of 85, though hot by some standards, feels like a cool ocean breeze when it hits Oklahoma in August. It will be interesting to see how my runs go with better temps and more overcast skies this week.  We have a 10k goal race for Pathways this coming Saturday. I will be running as a coach but also as a time trial to help me gauge my racing abilities. Wish me luck!

That’s it for now. Thanks for tuning in. Here is a link to the entire series.

Marty

You can read the entire series by choosing ‘marathon training’ from the series drop down menu on the right.

 

Marathon Training – Week 8

The Joy of Group Running

This past Wednesday I ran a few miles before the group run in Broken Arrow. I passed these 4 kids selling lemonade with profits going to a children’s cancer charity. I told them to be ready because I was going to bring back a LOT of customers.  As we warmed up I told my group I had a little surprise for them along the route and off we went. The excitement the kids had in seeing all of us arrive was matched by the fun the runners had in having a ‘lemonade moment’ on a very hot summer’s eve.  This is why group running is so awesome!

We found a lemonade stand!


The Open Ocean

A typical marathon training season is between 16-20 weeks. Mine is 19, so I am right smack dab in the middle of it about now. These middle weeks are when you have left the port and can no longer see it over the stern and you also can not yet see the port you are headed towards over the bow. You are on the open sea, at the mercy of the elements but without the ease of turning back or the excitement of knowing the next port of call is there on the horizon. It can be a time of creeping doubt, not sure whether you are headed in the right direction, even if the instruments say you are. I feel like I am best at avoiding falling prey to this problem when I stop looking at the horizon and look down at the water right in front of me. The other element that can have you worried is the state of your boat. It might be taking on more water than you want, or a sail might be ripped in a storm.

Hills just SEEM like they last forever, but they don’t.


Aches and Pains

Ok, enough with the analogy, Marty. What that really means is I just need to do each run as it comes. I know what my pacing and distances should be, I know what sort of tempo, hill or progression runs I should be doing, and I know when I should rest. If I stick with that plan, then the future should take care of itself. it also means, while I need to pay attention to various aches and pains, I don’t have to freak out about them and say the world is ending. It’s not. When you run marathon training miles you are going to have all sorts of random aches and pains. Some last for one run, some come the next day. Some last for a week then disappear, others seem to hang on forever. I have that happening in my elbow right now (did a wonky push up or 20 a few weeks ago) I have it in my side as well (did a wonky sit up or 20). They bug me a little bit, but they are annoyances, not injuries that are going to stop me. I am doing my best to take care of them (no push ups or sit ups lately) but overall I expect them to take a while to disappear, after all I am pretty old and at my age these things take a lot more time to heal than when I was 30 years younger. Of course, 30 years ago I was a lazy bum who never exercised so I didn’t have these issues to compare anyway!

About to hit the water stop!


Adaptability

Last week was even hotter than the week before, with 3 days over 100º.  Luckily only one of those days coincided with an afternoon/evening run, which we cut down in distance and pace so all would be safe. That is the thing about having such a long season, any specific planned run can be changed if circumstances warrant and you aren’t going to damage your training. You have plenty of time to either make up the workout if you really feel like it, or just skip it. The only real problem will come if skipping that one workout leads to skipping more. That can sometimes turn into an avalanche that ends with you saying ‘I am too far behind, I am going to quit the season.’

Leading warm up at 98º in downtown Tulsa!


Now, there are times when one has to do that. Life does happen and that can sometimes means weeks on end of family obligations, or an injury that puts you out for months. In that case you do need to reconsider and adapt, maybe to a new distance or maybe to a new race farther in the future. But most of the time that is not what is happening. Most of the time all you need to do is get back on your plan, even if you missed a few workouts, and all will be fine.

Details

As I mentioned last week I am trying to get in some morning runs. This is so I can get my miles in without having to do them all in the brutal heat of the afternoons in Oklahoma. I ran one last week of about 4 miles (ok, EXACTLY 4 miles) and it felt really good, with the sun barely up and the air much cooler, even if it still was quite humid.  I was able to get 32 miles in last week with a long run of 10 miles. My average pace for the week (approx. 9:45 per mile) has slowed a bit, due to heat and longer mileage. That is ok because I need to work on endurance and that means slower pace. Next week I hope to do a few more morning runs and get in a few miles before whatever run I am scheduled to coach.

Sunrise as I ran


That’s it for now. Let me know if you have any questions or insights.  Oh, and our 15k fall program starts the 3rd week of August. If you are interested, let me know!

You can read the entire Marathon Training Series HERE

See you running,

Marty

 

 

Marathon Training – Week 7

High Heat Training Camp

If you remember, last week I attended a High Altitude Training Camp (read – vacation at Sister-in-law’s house). This week I attended High Heat Training Camp (read Tulsa, Oklahoma all summer long).  When I came back a number of people asked if it was easier to run now that I was back closer to sea level (700 ft vs 10,000 ft).  I said ‘uh….no.’ as sweat poured down my face and body while running under a blazing sun at 96º with 103º heat index. That was the average day this past week in Oklahoma, and pretty much will be for the next month.

Mr. Gray (Coach Joe) and Mr. Neon after a VERY hot and humid run in Broken Arrow!


Luckily I am a pretty good high heat runner. I can go a long time as long as I keep a sustainable pace. But being good at it can be a problem. I can start to think I don’t need to do the basic things one should do, like hydrate! I haven’t had an issue yet this season but what I try to remember is I am not training for a training run, I am training for a marathon. That means the more I do in a training run what I would do in my marathon (proper hydration, nutrition, pacing, etc.) the more automatic and natural it will be when I am running my race. The other thing I have to remember is even if I can run 12 miles without hydration (I did it once, years ago) that doesn’t mean the next 14.2 miles would turn out to be good. I stopped after those 12 miles and drank a lot of fluids. But in a marathon I won’t be stopping in an air-conditioned home for a break to regain my strength and rehydrate. That means I need to be fueled up from the beginning of the race and not let my tank get empty.

Did I mention we got caught in another downpour this week? We loved it!


We talk about training runs but I sometimes like to think of them as practice runs instead. Just the same way a football or baseball player practices a play again and again, I want to practice all the elements of a real race again and again so when the race comes I can do it all without over thinking it. So this past Saturday I made sure to do nutrition and hydration like I would in a race.  I took Endurolyte tablets (for electrolytes/minerals) before the run, ate a Huma Chia Energy Gel at mile 4 and a Gu Roctane Energy Gel with Caffeine at mile 10.  I also drank Nuun Electrolyte drink and water at the 0, 4, 7 and 12 mile mark.  It was probably more than I needed but much better to have too much than not enough in your tank. This is especially true when you are sweating profusely!

I also found another Fleet Feet runner this week who is doing the Marine Corps Marathon.  I think he is close to my pace so we should be able to get in extra miles in together as needed. I will keep you informed.

Fleet Feet Full Marathon Program – Fall, 2017

Fleet Feet Half Marathon Program, Fall 2017


The other thing going on this week was the start of the Half and Full training program (called HIT and MIT) at Fleet Feet here in Tulsa.  I am a co-coordinator for it, in charge of all the weekday maps and activities. It made for a very active and fun week. I was required to be at each location early to answer questions, introduce people, clear up issues about who is coaching where, who is running in which group, etc. I also made sure to be at the TU Track on Tues. to introduce new people to how we do track workouts and to help them figure out their pace group. But even with those obligations I was able to get extra miles in before or after most of the runs and meet my mileage goal for the week. Turns out I ran 45 miles, by far the most I have run in a week. I have already passed my May mileage and I am just barely half way through July. And the best part is, besides being a little sore after the long run yesterday (14 miles), my body is responding well to the increased mileage.

Half-Marathoners warming up


If you are interested in half or full marathon training, be sure to contact me. The program has just started and there is more than enough time to jump in and get ready!

That is it for this week. Feel free to ask me any questions or give comments.

You can read the entire Marathon Training Series HERE

See you running,
Marty

 

Marathon Training – Week 6

Training Camp

Last week I went to ‘The Hills’, an elite high altitude training camp in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. I was there to train my lungs, legs and mind in the thin air of 10,000 feet. Ok, I actually went with my wife to visit her sister, Cathie Hill and her family, who live in Breckenridge.  But it is at 10,000 feet and I did go for a number of runs so I am going to stick with the training camp idea.

We had a fantastic time with family doing all sorts of fun activities. We rafted down the Colorado River one day and hiked 6+ miles up to a magnificent waterfall and back another day. We went to a cookout in Denver, then to a Colorado Rockies Major League Baseball game. And we witnessed and worried about a threatening forest fire near their home. There was also a fair amount of cooking, eating, game-playing, singing and general fun. In addition I read about 100 pages of my current book, Alexander Hamilton. However, I still have close to 600 pages to go so I definitely need another vacation.

4th of July Spirit!

High Anxiety

There is anxiety for a runner when they face a new challenge. My worries up that high were simple: ‘Will I collapse and die?’ and ‘will I get eaten by a bear or stomped by a moose?’  I can safely report now that none of those things happened.  But, when we got to their house and had to climb a flight of stairs I definitely thought any running would include a collapse. It’s SO easy to get out of breath in the mountains!  But because the air is so much thinner, high altitude running is fantastic for building lung capacity and oxygenating the blood. It can be done, it just takes patience.

Plans and Expectations

My plan was to acclimate gradually by going a short distance the first day, then increasing that each successive day. Day one was a 3 mile run. I took a walk break after the first mile, then each half mile after that. I felt good at the end but it felt more like I had done 6 miles, not 3. Day two was a 5 mile run. I took a walk break at mile 2 and 4. Day three was 4th of July and I skipped that day.

The scenery made the miles easy

At this point my plan for day five was to do 7 miles and day six I would do 9. As I started my 7 mile run I definitely thought I was not going to make it 7 and certainly wouldn’t make it 9 the next day. It was tough, even when I tried to slow my pace. I took a walk break at each of the first four mile markers. Then I turned around and instantly realized I had been on a very slight but insistent uphill grade for those 4 miles. Once I headed back I felt great and didn’t stop at all, stretching the 7 miles to 9 miles!  I was acclimated!

“I am NOT impressed!”

Day six we decided to do a rigorous hike. Because of that I didn’t want to wear myself out beforehand and decided to skip the 9 miler (since I had done 9 the day before anyway, right?). The hike was more of a challenge than the runs because it was a 1,000 ft climb over mostly rocky terrain. That pushed my Achilles and my legs in ways my running does not. I am not a trail runner but I took the opportunity to run a few times during the hike anyway. I loved the hike and it made me want to do some trail runs in the future.

WAY high up!

 

The Conquerors!

Home Again

We got home late Friday and the next morning I was ready to lead Pathways and do extra miles to get in my scheduled long run of 12 miles. But, it was storming quite a bit and we were only able to get in about 3 miles, 2 of which were in a pouring deluge. It was invigorating and exhilarating (I love running in the rain) but it wasn’t 12 miles! I could have just let the long run go but as I mentioned before my goal has been to hit at least 30 miles a week running. So I did my 12 miles Sunday morning before church. It was a solo run, probably the longest solo run I have done in 3-4 years. I took a unique route along a busy street so that I could pass a pharmacy and get some hearing aid batteries I needed. It all went great and I averaged the pace I wanted (9:30). I could have gone longer even as the day heated up so that was a good sign.

This coming week will be filled with leading the start of the Fleet Feet Tulsa Fall half and full program and continuing to coach the Pathways group. Getting in my miles shouldn’t be a problem since I have a lot of running to do just covering those groups.

That’s it for now. Feel free to ask questions or give suggestions about running, training, etc.

You can read the entire Marathon Training Series HERE

Marty

 

 

 

 

Marathon Training – week 5

I was proud to get up to 30 miles last week. I did it again this week and felt good about that. But ramping up the miles took its toll. Soreness, fatigue, random pain all came out of the woodwork. I thought the main reason was because I had run two long runs in a row. But I was reading the post of a friend who said she had run 220 miles in June and it started me wondering how many miles I had run. I knew it wasn’t anywhere near that far but checked just out of curiosity. My June miles were 120. That isn’t all that much for a marathoner but then I checked that against my May miles and it was more than double, from 55 to 120. That gave me a longer view of my progress, beyond day by day or week by week.


Another element of my training this time around has been a regimen of stretching. I am terribly unlimber,  have been my entire life. But if I want to be able to increase my stride length and go longer distances without me tightening up, I really felt like I needed to be stretched out. My goal? To touch my toes. NOT an easy thing to accomplish for me! Month after month it really seemed like I was making no progress. But just recently I have been able to touch my toes in two different ways! I am not at the point where I can just bend straight over and do it, but I can do it sitting down on the floor and stretching out and I can do it with one hand to one foot. So, I am making progress after all!

People more limber than me!

I think we easily get stuck in the short view, that if we can’t see progress in the immediate present we can’t see it at all. We end up thinking none is being made. But that is a mistake. We are making progress, it’s just sometimes on a longer scale than it is easy to see.
I am currently in Colorado on vacation. I am at 9,500 feet and have a whole new set of running challenges ahead of me!

In the meanwhile, Have a happy Fourth of July!

 

You can read the entire Marathon Training Series HERE

Marathon Training – Week 4

Hello Everyone!

Thanks for continuing to read of my progress in my marathon training this summer. My goal for week 3 was to run 30+ miles and I did it. Depending on how I want to count it I also ran 40+ miles! That is because on Sunday (usually a rest day) I ran 10 miles as a pacer for a friend who is doing a fundraiser. Kevin Shank, a long time runner in one of my groups, is focused on his own Marathon training this season. He is running the New York City Marathon (Nov. 4th).  He didn’t get in with the lottery but his wife Amy did. So he decided he would do the charity route and raise money for one of the causes the NYC marathon supports. Many people get into marathons that way and it’s a fantastic method to raise funds.

Me, Don Brough, Kevin Shank

Kevin was running a 25k to raise money and his plan was to have at least 1 pacer per 5k distance.  I was going to run the 4th leg but arrived on the scene as he was just about the start his 3rd leg with Don. I decided to join them for that. Then I ran my own leg and after at that point I could either run the 5k back to my car, or run the last 5k with him and another pacer to the finish line. They had breakfast tacos waiting so it was a no brainer. Thus, my 5k turned into 16k (10 miles).  This was on top of the 9 miles I had run the day before that brought me to 30 miles for the week.

Learning Pacing

One thing I am focused on during this season is proper pacing. After my surgery and weight loss I am much faster than in previous years. But faster at what distance? Just because I can run a certain pace doesn’t mean I can run that for 26.2 miles. I need to figure out what is my realistic pace for a marathon.  There is a formula that can be used to decide that but the problem is it is dependent on recent race times at lower distances. I have a recent 5k and 10k, but my other races are from before and they aren’t really accurate reflections of what I could do now.

TIred Leg Technique

That brings me to the back-to-back runs this weekend. One training technique that some use is to run on tired legs. This simulates what it might be like later in a race when you are indeed likely to be running on tired legs. My Saturday run was at a 9:24 pace for 9 miles. I felt great until the last mile or so then I could feel myself tiring. The Sunday run with Kevin was a good test of running on tired legs. How would I respond to another long run? Knowing we would probably be slower than Saturday made me decide to test this theory out.

The result? Overall I felt great. My ankle that had the surgery let me know I was pushing it, but not terribly. The last mile I was starting to tire, but also not terribly. I could have gone further. A whole 26.2 miles? Not likely yet but I am on target and that feels good.

Lessons Learned

I learned a couple of things. One, my ankle can handle it. This morning it feels not much different from if I hadn’t run yesterday. Two, I have 2 paces to compare, the 9:24 of Saturday and the 11:00 of Sunday.  I have more confidence now that my pace can be closer to the 9:30 pace than 11. I am starting to focus on 9:45-10:00 being a realistic pace for the marathon. But, this is still early in the training and I am not sold on it yet. It’s a benchmark I will keep in mind, that is all. Three, I loved running with Kevin and others to help him complete his goal. It was a beautiful morning with great company.

Relive

I also started using a pretty cool new app called ‘Relive’. It takes your GPS statistics and makes a video of your route over layed on a satellite map. It’s pretty cool. Here is the link to our Sunday run.  RELIVE

That’s it for this week. The upcoming week will be a bit different because I have some coaches out and I have some marathon training informational meetings I need to lead when I usually would be running. The week after that we are going on vacation over 4th of July week and that will be a new set of training challenges.

If you have any questions or suggestions, by all means let me know!

Thanks for following my progress!

You can read the entire Marathon Training Series HERE

See you running, 

Marty

 

 

 

 

 

Marathon Training – Week 3

This week I did an unorthodox track workout. I needed to be at the Pathways workout again this week instead of the track, but decided I would go early and get my speed work in before the scheduled run. The only problem is there is no track at the Fleet Feet store. What is there is a very long, straight and flat street that used to be an airport runway, So, with my trusty Garmin GPS watch as a guide, I figured out 600 meters distance (the track workout was a bunch of 600 meters sprints) and simply ran up and down the street until the workout was done.

Speedwork

Since it was a straight-away instead of a curved track I had the wind directly in my face for three of the 600m runs and directly at my back for the other two. I was almost a minute per mile slower heading into the wind, which was about 25 mph. The time difference in the stats below shows the effect wind can have on a runner.In addition, the temperature was 90º+. That meant the wind wasn’t really cooling me down much, just pushing up against me.

The idea behind speed work is two-fold. One, to get faster, (obviously). There is a common running mantra, “If you want to get faster, you have to run faster.”  Simple, but true.
The other reason is something called VO2max, short for maximum volume of oxygen. That is how much oxygen your lungs can take in. During long distance running you are at about 60-70% of lung capacity.  When you do speed work, if you are doing it right, your lung capacity is closer to 90-95% of capacity.

Why is this important? Think of it this way. You have a plastic cup you can pour water in. But it is a flexible cup, it can get bigger or smaller. If you always fill it up to 60-70% of its total volume, it won’t get bigger because it doesn’t need to. But if you fill it up to near capacity again and again it does gets bigger. How does that help you run long distances? Because your 60-70% capacity that you use for those long distances is now 60-70% of a BIGGER cup. That means you are getting more oxygen into your lungs and thus energy to your muscles. The result, better endurance at a higher pace.

Increasing Miles

I also increased my miles this week. This week I ran 5 times. Four of them were 4+ miles each and Saturday’s run was 10 miles for a total of 28 miles. My goal is to run 30-40 miles per week. I am getting there. The Achilles I had surgery on still is a bit stiff and sore after a long run so I am trying to move up mileage slow enough to allow the tendon to respond effectively.

Fork in the Road

Oh, and aside from all the goals and stats, I managed to coach some fun people this week.  And yes, we did. We found a fork in the road (actually on the sidewalk) and we didn’t take it.

You can read the entire Marathon Training Series HERE

See you running,

Marty

 

Marathon Training – Week #2

Week #1 of my training coincided with the start of my head coaching duties with Pathways, the 10K & 15K program I lead at Fleet Feet Tulsa. This is in addition to the Half and Full Marathon Program I co-coordinate that is already in the middle of its summer season. What that translates into is lesson #1 when for working towards a goal:

Summer Pathways 2017

Be Flexible and Creative

The thing to remember about a training schedule is that it’s one size fits all. For example, My marathon training schedule called for between 20 & 25 miles of running. I was able to get in 20+ miles so I met that training goal. But it also called for a track workout one run and hill repeats for another. Those I wasn’t able to get in because it was the opening week of Pathways and I had to have easy and flat routes for them.

Excuses vs Reasons

For me at least, I see the schedule as a guide, not a rule. That means I need to take into consideration my circumstances such as age, surgery recovery, other obligations and adjust accordingly. I don’t want to push my Achilles with a fast track workout and a hard hill night on back to back nights. I will, just not yet.That means I have to reason through what is best. What is best given who I am, what my body is going through? Adjusting accordingly is critical to moving forward successfully when you have a challenging goal.

Having said that, excuses are easy to come by. For example, I had to run with Pathways on their first Saturday run and they were scheduled for 3 miles. I, meanwhile, was scheduled to do 8 so I did 5 on my own afterwards. To do otherwise would have been to find an excuse and excuses aren’t the same as reasons.

Coming Up

This week will be similar to last week. However, I will be going to the University of Tulsa track for speedwork on Tuesday, we do have a hill night planned and the Saturday run is 10 miles. The weekly mileage should be closer to 25 this week.

You can read the entire Marathon training series HERE

If you have any questions, comments, suggestions, etc. feel free to connect. I would love to hear from you.

See You Running,

Marty

Marathon Training – Week #1

Today I officially embark on my marathon training and I thought I would take you along on my journey.  I am training for the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, DC on October 22nd, 2017, exactly 20 weeks away.

I have run marathons before, 6 times to be exact. Sometimes I ran sloppy, sometimes sharp. Sometimes seriously, sometimes too casually. Some were successful, some were disasters. But this time is different because I had Achilles Tendon surgery to remove some nasty bone spurs 7 months ago today. I ran for 6 years with those bone spurs stabbing into my Achilles until I just couldn’t do it any more. It took me a little short of 4 months to start to run again after the surgery. Besides the surgery I also have lost approximately 30 lbs in the last 10 months, since Aug. 2016.

At 6 months post-surgery I ran my first race, a 10k, and had a personal record (PR) of 51:52. Three weeks after that I ran another race, a 5k, and had another PR (24:50). I ran these races so I could have a new baseline from which to measure my abilities after the surgery and weight loss. Running shorter races also allows me to project what I might be able to do in a marathon. Given those numbers and judging from my past marathons, I am working towards running a 4:15 marathon. That would eclipse my prior PR by 20 minutes. That is a big leap and it will take a lot of determined work and luck to make it happen. If circumstance of weather are less than ideal, if I have injuries along the way, if I find my Achilles doesn’t like the longer distances I have to subject it to, or any other number of things, that number could change dramatically. But, that’s the nature of long distance running, surgery or not, and I accept it as part of the package.

I will update my journey at least once a week. Each week I will let you know what I did and how it went. But I will also let you know how and what it is I am feeling about the journey, what my fears and enthusiasms are, and what I have coming up.  I am sharing the journey for a number of reasons. I want to learn from my friends and followers what they know about running and training, I want to help inspire and motivate my friends around the globe on their own fitness journey, I want to have accountability and I want to teach what I know, and what I am learning, to others.

That’s it for now. Next week I will explain the program, and give you some more details of my training. I will also be posting all over social media as I go. You can find me on instagram and twitter as @thenapkindad. If you have any questions, feel free to ask me!

You can read the entire Marathon Training Series HERE

See you running,

Marty

Subscribe and Join TheNapkin Kin

Get on the mailing list and get The Napkin Newsletter once a month and get a review of the months postings, with extra resources and features that will make your brain bigger and your day better!

 

Thanks, You Are Now A Napkin Kin!

%d bloggers like this: