Monday, September 24, 2007

Today's Question and Deep Thoughts

I noticed that in deducting the difference between the chip time and gun time of my Lewis & Clark Marathon I ran the first half about 5 minutes faster than what I ran my half marathon in April. I believe that the training at greater than half marathon distances was beneficial in the improved HM time. That leads me to today’s question:

In order to improve full marathon time and to build better stamina for the 26.2 miles, shouldn’t I work towards longer than marathon training runs? If I continue in my training to max at 20-22 miles, how will I ever see any significant improvement? What distances is everyone maxing at in marathon training? We are currently running 4-5 miles on Mondays and Wednesdays with our long runs on either Saturday or Sunday each week. Would it also make any sense to up my weekly mileage? We are currently in the 14-18 mile range just after completing the marathon less than two weeks ago. I do know that incorporating some speed work into my routine at least every other week will help improve time and endurance, so I’ve got to get beyond talking about it and just “get it done”. I know I may not be the fastest horse in the race but I also know I’m not the slowest mule on the course either. While I’m able I still want to do the best that I can in my runs and that means improving my times when possible.

It was sort of funny today sitting in the Oklahoma City airport, yes I’m traveling again. This time I am off to Colorado from Monday to Friday. Anyway, the fact that I finished the Lewis & Clark Marathon is finally sinking in for me. I sat and was people watching, a favorite time passer for me when I travel. In watching the other travelers I felt a pride in knowing that I’ve accomplished something that so many others haven’t even thought about much less attempted. I’m not really feeling all that cocky just good about what I’ve done and the journey that I’ve walked and ran over the past 2 years.

My shin problems are back again it seems, still in the right leg. Today the pain wasn’t as noticeable when I got up as it was yesterday. I’ve started taking my liquid anti-oxidant again (Monte Vie) and I’m wondering if that is truly the reason the pain is lessening. I know that anti-oxidants are capable of great things in the body.

It is so incredible to think that I’ve got a half marathon coming up in less than 3 weeks and I’m not nervous about it or apprehensive about the distance at all. The feeling is that it’s just going to be another training run. I’m really looking forward to what November, December and January will bring. Running 3 marathons within 90 days to achieve my first level as a Marathon Maniac, that creates a bit of the jitters.

The time between now and November 18 will be spent training again, building base mileage as I work towards new goals. Now that I know I can do the distance, I’ll be signing up for the Tulsa – Route 66 Marathon this coming weekend. I am already committed to the Honolulu Marathon on December 9 and the Houston Marathon on January 13. I’m excited to have these targets out in front of me and equally excited that upon completion of them I will have four marathons behind me in four different states. On a long term note, I’m toying with the idea of eventually running 50 marathons in 50 states, a lofty goal for a newbie, but food for thought and another reason to run.

Looking ahead to next year, at least the first half of the year, I see an entry into the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon (running the full this time), then about a month and half later entering the Grandma’s Marathon in Duluth, MN because that is within an hour of our grandkids and a good excuse for a vacation with them.


Backofpack said...

Now you've got the bug! For what it's worth here's what I do:

Saturday/Sunday - long run (whatever the schedule calls for) and on the other day about 5-6 miles
Monday - teach pilates
Tuesday - 8 miles, hills
Wednesday - 6 miles
Thursday am - 5 miles, pm - 3-4 miles
Friday - teach pilates

My weekly mileage ranges from 30 to 45 miles or so, depending on the long run. I don't do real speedwork - although I did start running with someone faster than me and my speed picked up. Funny, when I ran a 50k and three marathons in a row, my times improved. Right up till I got tendonitis anyway!

So I'm following my schedule above, my longest run has been 20 miles, plus that 17 mile Six Summits (Eric says that equals a long one). That's it till marathon day. Then a weekend off the long distance, then another marathon, then we'll see.

There you go - don't know if it helps or not!

Pat said...

I think your times will improve as you get more mileage under your belt. That's quite a list of races. You ought to change the Houston race for the Rock and Roll in Arizona. Same day and you can run with me.

Jess said...

Some people do train in that manner, but they are few and elite.

Considering the toll that 26.2 miles takes on your body, some of the mechanics of training for it are far different from something with a shorter distance.

Marcy said...

I'm going to call you Dean Karnazes, Randy LMAO! Wow!

ws said...

while I'm compelled to think the same way as you, the additional time you need to recover from running 26 or more miles will decrease the quality of your other runs.

The rumor is that it takes 6-7 years to reach peak running condition, so it is time on your feet and quality of miles more than quantity apparently.

Mary Gee said...

Where are you in CO?

teacherwoman said...

I haven't run any marathons, or half marathons for that matter, but I do know that it usually isn't necessary to run more than 26.2 miles prior to the actual marathon. It's just soo hard on the body!

Michelle said...

Randy, are you ever home anymore?


Some of the others have good ideas for training. I agree that it takes a great deal of time to build up a good base and improve times. You still have years ahead of you to get better! :-)

Randy said...

Thanks everyone, my mind keeps wanting to do things too quickly, I appreciate all of your great knowledge and input.

No it seems that of late I'm hardly ever home, but with some luck I might be home most if not all of next week, we shall see.

Michelle (Back of Pack)...thanks for your schedule, I think I've seen it from you before, but it makes more sense today for some reason.

J~mom said...

Randy, I am using your thinking to try to go a little longer for my half this time. I felt like that with my first half I just got it done. In order to feel better about it I want to have run over the mileage a few times at least. I don't know how that works with full marathons though because the distance is so much longer.

I agree with Pat that you should come run with us in Phoenix. :>)

Darrell said...

I have never run more than 22 miles in a training run. I've seen my marathon times improve by 40 minutes over a period of 3 years. I think consistent training is key

TNTcoach Ken said...

Dude, you just completed a marathon, savor the moment! I think the mid-week miles are necessary to building your strength and stamina. Great job.