Tuesday, May 14, 2013
The Race Lottos Love Me! HELLO ST.G 26.2!
Well, my third and final race lottery of the year was a success...I found out that for the third year in a row, I got into the St. George Marathon. The first two lotteries of the season being Little Red Century Ride and LOTOJA. Any one that has read this blog, or knows me, knows that this is my favorite race. On any given year, only about half of those that apply get in through their random lotto, and for the third year in a row, I was lucky enough to get in!
Last year I had really mixed feelings about doing the race, even up till the weeks before. I didn't want to train, I was stressed about my not so great training, but ended up having a fantastic race. This year, I am not going to lie, I think I would have cried if I hadn't gotten in. I am so freakin excited to do this, I can't stand it! I guess one thing that I learned last year is that I am really capable of good things, and that I can blow myself away even when I don't think there is much in me, as far as race performance can go. So, I am taking away from that the possibility if I really do train well and push my comfort zone, imagine then what I can do! That potential alone has me so excited to do this race, I am ready to jump into training!
I have thought for the past 24 hours about how I want to train. For my first marathon I followed a training plan that I found on the web designed for those doing their first marathon. If focused on distances only. The next three I have done my own thing, basically running 3-4 days a week, with weekday runs being between 3-6 miles, and the weekend runs gradually getting longer up til one or two 18 milers. I have then followed that with a 2-3 week taper.
However, for this year, I want to do more. I want more structured training and more training with a purpose in mind. I called on my friend Dave, who is an avid runner and marathoner and asked what he does. He referred me to Runners World's Smart Coach option on their website. You simply enter a recent race time, how hard you want to train, when your goal race is, and they configure a plan for you. I was curious and skeptical at the same time, so I went and tried it. After some fiddling around with it, it came up with a plan that seems to work well with my tri and LOTOJA training, but at the same time, will push me out of my comfort zone FOR SURE.
This plan will have me running four days a week. This includes two easy runs, one tempo/speed work run, and one long run. However, since I am already at a point where I completed an 18 miler recently (the Striders 30k race) it starts the longest of the long runs with in the first 3 weeks and then repeats them through out the next 5 months. So instead of just one or two 18 milers, I will have five to seven 18-20 milers by race time. Sweet! (I say that now, I may be crying come time to do them)
The other new factor to this is the speed work. I have never seriously done any. This will have me doing structured tempo runs and track work outs at least once a week. I am excited by this because I am curious about how this will affect my overall pace, and also, just for something to break the miles up of marathon training. That is another issue, the amount of miles in this program! I will peak out in this training plan at 50 miles in a week, which for me, is the most I have ever done. There are a few weeks in the program that my short runs will be 10-11. Yikes!
I know that this is taking on a lot. I know that the commitment is huge. I know that I will get burned out if I am not careful. I know that the risk of injury is definitely increased with this type of training program. I know I will have to take good care of myself mentally and physically to prevent all of the above. However, I also know that the potential reward is HUGE, and I know that I am capable of doing this. The paces that each training session calls for are ones that are already within my reach (though some of the speed work sessions kinda have me laughing, like YEAH RIGHT)
I love the challenge of the marathon, and NOTHING in the world beats that feeling. I have never trained this hard for one, so I am really intrigued by what I could potentially do, which is totally KILL it come October 5th.
At the same time, this also fits in with the other tris I have scheduled, as well as leaves room for the training I need to do for LOTOJA, which I don't plan on shirking from either. I found that last year all of this training is cumulative, and I know that the running will benefit the cycling and vice versa.
This training program officially starts on Monday. I have already made some adjustments in it obviously with vacations we are going on, races I already have planned, etc, but I was really pleased to see how few adjustments I did have to make to it and how well it fit in on its own.
I will keep you posted, obviously on how the next 143 days go until show time. Can you tell how stoked I am!?!?! Happy training all!