Monday, March 23, 2009

A Welcome Change of Scene

Last week it was time to "get out of Dodge". My wife had a window of opportunity to take time off, so we pulled the kids out of school and headed to Washington, DC for a few days of sightseeing in the Nation's Capitol. Our kids had been interested in politics (well, sort of) since the election, and there's been so much going on lately, that it was palpably exciting to be in the thick of it for a few days. I even got some work done. I'll spare you the mindless vacation nattering (though we saw a lot and had some real family fun), and will stick to the running highlights.

After Sunday's long run with the last 5 at marathon pace, I ran 5 easy miles on Monday while we were still home. I almost never run on Monday, but wanted to position myself to get close to 50 miles in for the week. We drove for about 10 hours on Tuesday, which I'd planned as a rest day. My wife - bless her heart - gave me an enthusiastic green light to go for a short, pre-dinner run after we arrived at our Georgetown hotel. I zoomed to the Lincoln Memorial and back, finishing site of many of my casual 3-4-mile runs when I was in grad school and lived a few blocks from there in Foggy Bottom. It was nice to stretch my legs, though I was underdressed for the cool wind coming off the Potomac River. The rest of the week shaped up like this:
  • Wednesday - 9 miles, mostly on the C&O Canal tow path
  • Thursday - 5 miles, to catch up to the family at the zoo (threw in a quick 6:50 mile into the harsh wind)
  • Friday - 7 miles, again on the tow path (that made 11 consecutive running days)
  • Saturday - scheduled off day, drove home
  • Sunday - decided to do this cycle's first 20+-miler; hit the 20-mile mark in 2:53 (did miles 16-20 between 8:00-7:30 pace), and ended up doing 21.25 (had to go real slow for the last 1.25 because the snow had not melted off the path yet and it was slick and uneven)

Total mileage for the week was about 52, with very little intensity, so not that much of a cutback. I feel surprisingly good coming off a 21-miler, so that bodes well for my remaining 8 weeks.

This week is scheduled to go like this:

  • Monday - elliptical/circuit/core/stretch
  • Tuesday - 10 miles, including 400 or 800m intervals with the running club
  • Wednesday - 10 miles easy, with a few hill sprints if I feel okay
  • Thursday - 8 miles easy
  • Friday - 10 miles, with 5-6 at half-marathon pace
  • Saturday - 5 miles easy
  • Sunday - 17-18 miles, with 13-14 at marathon pace plus 10-20 seconds (so around 7:50 pace)

Total mileage = 60+ (perhaps my 3rd ever 60-mile week)

If I can keep up this mileage and intensity without getting hurt, I'm feeling more and more confident about my chances of qualifying for Boston on May 17th.

In other running-related news, I just heard about my 113th Boston Marathon volunteer assignment. Rather than any of the race-day tasks for which I signed up, I'm slated to work the Expo on Saturday afternoon/evening. Not the exact emotionally-charged, adrenaline-fueled experience I had hoped for, but I'll be a good doobie and help where I'm needed. Hopefully, I'll still get a cool volunteer's jacket. Next year, I'll be at the Expo as a participant, and at least I'll know my way around.


1 comment:

Preston said...

That is great you are working Boston!