I hope I'm ready for my marathon now. I just finished my first 300 mile month ever:
I also just finished my first 80-mile week last week:
It's a been long road since my best marathon time ever, in May 2009, to now. I've had to learn how to push myself without putting myself out of commission for 4-8 weeks at a time, as the graph shows below:
The lessons learned? [Your mileage may vary]
There should be at most only 2 strictly paced workouts per week: 1 tempo or interval, and maybe 1 long run at pace (don't obsess on pace for the long run).
If you're going to be on the treadmill for easy/recovery runs, undershoot the pace on these.
For a double-run day, one of the runs should be a minute per mile slower than "easy pace".
During the bulk of the mileage build-up, it's okay to go slower than you're capable of. Really.
If you must track your time and distance always, use a stopwatch on a measured route instead of GPS.
If anything stops working for you mentally or due to time-constraints, make a change:
Split up longer workouts if schedule is a constraint.
Run at a different time of day.
Run on the treadmill.
Avoid the treadmill.
Drive to a park that you don't normally run in.
I've also learned that beyond about 50 miles per week, the mental, psychological, and political [home and work] aspects of getting workouts in become more difficult than the physical aspects. I absolutely don't have answers for any of that, except to be as generous and flexible as possible when not running to buy the good graces of those who you depend on and who depend on you.
I have no clue what I can really go for as far as a Marathon time goes.
3 months of 260+ mile months
20:52 5k PR in September in warm (humid and 79) conditions.
Very manageable 58:46 8-mile tempo (10-miles total in 1:17:46) yesterday
Marathon on November 7 in Indianapolis.
My only hesitation is that I really didn't have many recent longer medium/hard workouts (beyond 2-3 miles of faster running) until yesterday.
I assume that in the right conditions, 3:39 is too soft a target. I was thinking to stretch for 3:30, but now I'm looking at what I've accomplished and started thinking that *not stretching* for something faster would be a complete waste of my training.
My favorite response:
Does it really matter? I'm not being a wiseass, seriously, does having a bunch of yahoos on the internet try to narrow the target really make people feel better?
I think if you're actually well trained then you probably have a really solid idea what you're capable of--within a small range. But even if you don't...you're going to run what you're capable of as long as you don't do anything stupid like stick to a preconcieved pacing plan that takes you out too fast even though your body is telling you it's too fast (or at least it would be if you'd listen to it instead of staring at your pace pracelet and garmin.)
Do this: when the race starts, go out at a pace you feel like is about the fastest you can maintain for 26.2 miles or so. Take constant inventory of your body and your surroundings. At the end you sould expect it to get quite hard. When this happens, just go like hell until someone wraps you in mylar.
It seems that the carriers enable Thumbplay to latch onto a user's account without a reasonable opt-in process. The only recourse is for the phone subscriber to request a refund of the charges and formally/explicitly request to opt-out of the service.
This is a sign that your business model is failing. If you're depending on a 30-70% cut of 3rd party billing that your average user either won't notice or won't ask to have canceled, then you have lost sight of how to actually make money by providing a valuable service to the user.
Carriers' days are numbered. Why?
Google Voice - blocked by Apple or AT&T or whomever. The iPhone initially blocked all VOIP applications from using the phone network, with some enabled when connected to wireless (such as Skype). Imagine if you rarely used a voice carrier for voice calls.
...ideas that can be "dangerous" with a little Sci-Fi vision applied:
Mesh Networking - I originally saw this described in the context of OLPC, but I think the real power is if wireless saturation becomes such that wireless carriers are no longer useful in areas where the average household is within wireless range of the next nearest household.
Google Tablet - What if Google's mission was to proliferate its own ad-hoc infrastructure, and the Google Tablet was a means of doing so? Picture this:
Google patents technology which splits the wireless network device into two virtual devices: One for local wireless communication and one for mesh networking.
The phone operating system version of Google Android can tap into the mesh network.
The Google Android phone could then operate without a wireless carrier.
My 10k PR is 46:26, which is a 7:29 pace, and my target tempo pace for today was a 7:21 pace. I had tossed around the idea of running a 10k race this weekend, but decided that I didn't want to reduce my miles enough to make a strong showing at the race.
1 mile w/u - 9:35
10k split - 45:14 (7:17 pace)
0.78 mile [rest of the 7 mile tempo] in 5:25 (6:57 pace)
1 mile c/d - 9:26
It was a fun little exercise, and I'm happy that I have my legs back under me after having a rocky week of workouts last week.
I tried to repeat the workout that I pulled off last week--5-4-3-2-1 @ MP on a long run. Last week, that run made me feel that I had a shot at 3:20 for a marathon. This week, my run made me feel I would struggle to hit my PR. While I *did* add 2 miles to the week and long run distance, my 20 miler today was 50 seconds per mile slower than my 18 miler last week. Not to mention that the weather was much cooler this weekend.
I have had low quality runs this week, and had quite a bit of trouble with coughing today. I also dropped about 2 pounds this week, and spent an hour and a half straight standing up last night and was feeling pretty sick last night. I'm feeling quite a bit better now, although I still have this lingering cough.
6 miles PM - Easy (natural, full stride, ballpark 8'50"-9'00") 8'31"/pace is pretty easy
Actual workout: 6 miles at an average 8'21" pace--quite a bit more aggressive than originally planned. I opted for the treadmill, because I wasn't in the mood to deal with lunch time traffic outside. I started at a solid 8'31" pace, but felt pretty good at 8'00" and even 7'30". I even added a few strides of 6'12"-6'25" in for variety towards the end.
7 miles AM - Recovery
Actual workout: ran a third run on Monday, while watching the Packers-Vikings game. 7 miles at an average 9'31" pace.
6 miles PM - Easy
Actual workout: 6 miles at an average 8'33" pace--first half at 7.0 mph on the treadmill, second half at 7.1 mph on the treadmill.
10 miles APM - Tempo (8-miles @ 7'23" pace)
Actual workout: 8 miles in 58:46 or 7'21" pace, 10 miles in 1:17:46 or 7'47" pace. Hacking cough tripped me up at miles 5 and 6.
The pants that I bought at the outlet after my first marathon in OBX (Nov 2007) are now at least 3" too big. That was a year and half after starting running and 45 pounds lost. I've also dropped about 20 pounds since.