This has been a really busy week. Work was crazy busy but also very productive. I am pleased to say that my marathon training was equally productive. Between work, training, and watching the Olympics, there wasn't a whole lot of time left for anything else. I logged 28.4 running miles this week, including a 5K Race I ran Sunday morning (right after watching the Olympic Men's Marathon). This brings my total Marathon Training miles to 167.6 miles. By the end of August, I should reach the 200-mile training milestone (and about 677 total running miles to-date for 2012).
Tuesday, I ran 3x500m intervals, working on my speed. I haven't been doing these as often as I should have and I made the decision to restore that weekly discipline. I averaged 9:35/mm run intervals which was good, but not where I want to be. It is clear that I have to spend some serious time on my speedwork.
On Wednesday, I ran at LifeTime Fitness after work. I had a massage scheduled at 7PM, so I figured running beforehand would be good. Well I got to LIfeTime later than expected thanks to the traffic, so I moved my massage to 7:30pm and went to run. The run felt great! I had no problem holding a steady 9:57/mm pace. Unfortunately, I had to stop at 3.4 miles in order to have enough time to shower and get to my massage appointment. And it was the best massage ever too!
I took Friday off from work because I was taking my son to the Chicago Comic Con. I had a 5K race scheduled on Sunday (my usual Long Run day) so I had to do the Long Run either Friday or Saturday. So I decided to take my 15-mile Long Run early Friday morning. This is the longest distance I will have ever run. It was a very satisfying run, and gave me more confidence that I will reach the marathon distance goal if I stick to my training plan. In the end, I ran 15.75 miles in 3 hours (a shorter time than it took me to run 14 miles two weeks ago). That really made me feel great. After that run, I spent all day at the Comic Con, walking several miles throughout the Convention center (the perfect recovery event)!
For my birthday (on Thursday), I ordered myself a new pair of running shoes, a pair of Saucony Kinvara 3s. The shoes I have been wearing are wearing out (with 300+ miles on them) and I knew that August would be the month for new shoes so I would have them broken in before the Chicago Marathon. Well, they arrived on Friday while I was at Comic Con.
So Saturday, when my son and I returned home, I unboxed them and took them on a 'test drive'. They are very light-weight, minimalist, with only a 4mm heel drop which I prefer. It was about 78F outside at 2pm but it felt great to be out for a run. I ran/walked for 2.24 miles (ran 1.63 of them), and the shoes felt very good on my feet. So I decided I would wear them for my 5K race on Sunday and really see how they would perform.
Sunday started at 5AM when I woke up early to watch the Men's Marathon (and yes, to get ready for my race). The race was amazing! I ate my pre-race breakfast, got dressed, and sat to watch the race. Eventually, I had to leave for my race but thanks to NBC, I was able to listen to the streamed race on my iPad. The race finished as I pulled into the parking lot for my own race.
With USA Marathoner Meb Keflezighi coming in 4th place, after a strong push to come from 10th place, I was in the mood to run. My race started with good cool weather, and I was good to go. The course had a lot of rolling hills but I was determined to make it through. I finished in 30:07 with an average 9:42/mm pace. Not a PR performance for me, but I was still very pleased with the effort. I think if I had been doing more consistent speedwork, I would have done better. So that is what I am going to do.
And the Kinvara 3s? They were great! They felt good on my feet, no pain at all. I think they are keepers. I need to pick up a second pair of shoes (so that I have two pairs to switch between). I haven't decided which to get but am leaning towards the Brooks PureFlow. Once I have worn both pair through September, I will make the call as to which shoes I will wear for the Chicago Marathon. This will be a very important decision.
So my week ends with a solid 28 miles of training, and the close of a great Summer Olympics performance by the USA: 46 Gold medals out of a total of 104 medals overall. I am proud of my country, and I am excited about these next 8 weeks leading up to the Chicago Marathon!