Race Buzz

The Boston Marathon was this week. No, I didn't do Boston. I watched the coverage of the race and all of the post-race coverage. It was really exciting to see a Ryan Hall and Kara Goucher running up front and challenging for the race.

I think that I wish I could do Boston. Don't know if I'm caught up in the buzz from reading "Duel in the Sun" and of the race, or if my personal goal juices are starting to flow again.  I'm not sure if I would want to do it because of the history and status of the race or for the badge of honor. Regardless, my plans don't include trying to BQ this year. I need to get my time down closer to the standard before I can even think about trying to BQ, and since I'm only planning 1 marathon this year, that pretty much puts me out of next year. Depending on where my times go, my honest target may be 2012 (with the benefit of a 10 minute increase in the qualifying standard).

Regardless of all that, there is nothing better than an elite competition like that to get the juices flowing. Monday was a great 7 mile run despite crappy conditions. The race had just completed and I had to fight to just maintain a smooth normal pace. Wednesday was another 7, with fartleks for speed work. It was a good run with fast speed segments, but the problem with fartleks is I jut don't know how fast I'm running the hard/recovery segments. Sure I can get an average pace,  but that is a mean, not a median. I held up pretty well, although my legs were tiring during the 4 minute segments. I would say I was probably below 5k pace. The wind again was horrible, blowing 16-22 mph. This has been the norm, it seems, for the past week or two. The forecast only has it getting worse before it gets better.

Our local 5k, the Z-Rum is this weekend. I'm not sure what my race plans are. The weather is supposed to be warm, hopefully we'll get a break from all this wind we've been experiencing lately. I'd like to go out and bust one, but I may be "employed" to rabbit for one of the kids.

Jil's week has been mixed up. She subbed on Monday, her mom was in town on Wednesday, her birthday was Thursday (she gets to move up an age group!). She's been able to get her runs in, but they weren't with the group. Friday the group was able to get together with everyone for most of the run. She was doing a reduced day since she is racing tomorrow, the rest of the group isn't so they were going a little further. It's probably a good thing she was doing a reduced day because her IT band started to hurt again around 5-6. I'd like her to get through one more week, then I'll have her start her taper a week early.  After all, it's about finishing, not breaking records. Z-Run plans for her include a PR. Given what the conditions are supposed to be and her training, that is very doable.

Will has been doing some running in baseball practice but that is the extent of it. He has some lofty goals for the Z-Run this weekend. I hope he isn't disappointed. I'm not sure if goals are too aggressive or not. Hopefully I'll be pleasently surprised.

Anna came home from track practice last week icing for shin splints. She had tried to avoid going to the trainer but finally couldn't take it anymore. When the trainer told her she went from no running to 3 miles a day to quickly, she admitted that she should have listened to her parents when they encouraged her to get some runs in as we approached track season. She iced and rested enough to be ready for the meet on Monday, but it was blown/rained out. Wednesday at home was now her first opportunity to test the track for real. The way the wind has been, I've been telling Anna not to worry a lot about time, and just run for place. That's in contradiction to the coaches who tell her to go out with the lead group. That isn't how I acieved my best times, so I'm trying to help her. Hopefully my coaching doesn't lead her astray. Of course she didn't listen to her dear old dad in the 1600 and took off in the first 400. Given the conditions and first meet of the season, she posted an impressive 6:15.7 PR. My experience would also question her strategy in the 4x800, but it worked for her, 2:43. In the open 800 she ran a very smart race and got outleaned for second, but 2:48 for your third race is pretty good. As for Z-Run, I'm not sure what Anna's goals are. She has talked about sub-20, but I think she would be more realistic shooting for around 22, especially this early in the season.

Look for the Z-Run race report in a separate post.


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