Wait, it’s August 17th already?
It’s hard to believe that the Chicago Marathon is just 8 short weeks away. Where has the time gone? It feels like June just happened. And yet – boom! – we are already halfway through August! The summer months always seem to fly by, but this summer has been traveling at Audubon-like speed. These feelings may stem from the fact that I’ve slept in my own bed exactly 14 times over the past 52 days.
Despite trying to keep up with the chaotic schedule, which included working a trio of middle school and high schools camps (always fun to do!), travels to Ohio, Georgia, Tennessee, Washington, Massachusetts and around Oregon, and an action-packed week of hosting the Eugene Marathon and the World Junior Championships in Eugene, I’ve somehow found a way to string together a pretty solid last 4 weeks of training. The average weekly mileage over those 7+ weeks? Right at 120 miles per week.
I left Oregon for my last trip of the summer this past Friday. My destination was the Massachusetts cape for the annual Falmouth Road Race. Although my training has been pretty good, especially these past few weeks, I traveled with a bit of uncertainty as to how my body would respond on race day because of my recent nomadic lifestyle, which usually doesn’t lend itself to racing well. With modified expectations, I looked forward to breaking up the monotony of marathon training by taking in one last change of scenery and soaking up the local residents’ infectious pride they have for their prestigious race and quaint town.
One of the unique aspects of the Falmouth Road Race is that the race staff matches elite runners with a host family, who graciously open up their homes to us. Don’t get me wrong, I stay in some really nice hotels throughout the year, but being able to enjoy a home-cooked meal and have a bedroom to yourself is a nice change of pace. It’s also a great opportunity to meet new people.
My host this year was Kathy Scadden, who actually lived in Woods Hole about 2 blocks from the start line. Kathy, along with her two daughters, were Amazing-with-a-capital-A hosts! They truly made me feel like I was a part of their family; it was as if they were meeting this long-lost nephew/cousin for the first time. We had some great conversations over several wonderful meals and they did their best to show me around town, even taking me out on the water in their boat. More than anything, it was invigorating to be around ambitious people. They set the tone for Sunday’s race.
As for the actual running part of my trip, it was more good than bad. I finished 8th overall and ran 34:04 (4:50 per mile) for the rolling and scenic 7.1 mile course. Along with being my highest finish at Falmouth (I was 27th in 2011 and 22nd in 2012), it was also my fastest finishing time. And of the three years I’ve run Falmouth, this was easily the warmest, with the sun beating down on the runners as we made our way along the coast from Woods Hole to Falmouth. Running these shorter races in the middle of marathon training for me is always a bit of a crapshoot because there’s really just not any spring in my stride. But doing well gives me a lot of confidence because I know if I can run fast during my heavy training cycles, I’ll be in good position when it’s time to peak. And it’s been fun to be somewhat competitive this summer at these shorter races (referencing both Peachtree and Falmouth).
So that’s the update. I won’t be leaving Oregon again over the next 2 months and I’m really looking forward to 8 consecutive weeks of normalcy: run, eat, work, run, eat, sleep; repeat. I’ve set the Chicago-marathon-bar high for myself and know that there is lots of work to be done between now and October 12th, but weekends (and races) like this only fuel my fire.
For those of you nerdy-runner folk (not an insult, I’m one of you!), below is a look at my past month of training. I won’t post weekly updates like I did for Boston, but I’ll make sure you see behind the curtains as Chicago approaches. Enjoy!
**I’m posting this message somewhere above Colorado on my flight from Boston to San Francisco – how cool is technology!!
|Monday||12 miles||6 miles||18|
|Tuesday||3 mile warmup. 25 x 400m, :45 rest. 3 mile cooldown||6 miles||19|
|Wednesday||12 miles||6 miles||18|
|Thursday||3 mile warmup. 8 mile tempo. 8 x 300m, :45 rest. 3 mile cooldown.||OFF||16|
|Sunday||Falmouth Road Race: 34:04 (4:50/mile @ 7.1 miles).||OFF||15|
|Monday||23 miles (miles 17-21 @ tempo pace).||OFF||23|
|Tuesday||11 miles||6 miles||17|
|Thursday||3 mile warmup. 6 x 1 mile hard / 1k float, continuous. 3 mile cooldown. 15 miles total.||6 miles||21|
|Friday||12 miles||6 miles||18|
|Saturday||4 mile warmup. 8 x Hendricks Hill repeats. 4 mile cooldown.||6 miles||18|
|Monday||11 miles||7 miles||18|
|Tuesday||12 miles||6 miles||18|
|Wednesday||3 mile warmup. 4 x 400m / 2 mile tempo / 4 x 400m / 2 mile tempo / 4 x 400m. 3 mile cooldown.||6 miles||19|
|Thursday||12 miles||6 miles||18|
|Friday||6 miles||12 miles||18|
|Saturday||3 mile warmup. 3 mile tempo / 6 mins of 100m on/off. 3 mile tempo, 4 mile cooldown||6 miles||21|
|Sunday||13 miles||7 miles||20|
|Monday||12 miles||7 miles||19|
|Tuesday||16 miles: 12 miles (4 easy, 8 @ threshold). 10 x 100m strides. 1 mile hard. 3 mile cooldown.||6 miles||22|
|Thursday||6 miles||3 mile warmup. 4 mile tempo, :90 rest, hard 1 mile, :60 rest, hard 800m. 3 mile cooldown||17|
|Friday||10 miles||5 miles||15|
|Saturday||7 miles w/ drills||OFF||7|
|Sunday||Pace Eugene Marathon @ 5:12 for 18.5 miles.||OFF||23|
Trackback from your site.