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.

Giving them the Zoolander-Blue-Steel look!

Giving them the Zoolander-Blue-Steel look!

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.

Kathy and I post-race

Kathy and I post-race

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).

Top 5 American finishers with the ALL-Americans: Frank Shorter, Joan Benoit-Samuelson, and Meb.

Top 5 American finishers with the ALL-Americans: Frank Shorter, Joan Benoit-Samuelson, and Meb.

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!!

8/11-17 AM PM Total
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
Friday 12 miles OFF 12
Saturday 7 miles OFF 7
Sunday Falmouth Road Race: 34:04 (4:50/mile @ 7.1 miles). OFF 15
105
8/4-10 AM PM Total
Monday 23 miles (miles 17-21 @ tempo pace). OFF 23
Tuesday 11 miles 6 miles 17
Wednesday 13 6 miles 19
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
Sunday 20 miles OFF 20
136
7/28-8/3 AM PM Total
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
132
7/21-27 AM PM Total
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
Wednesday 15 miles OFF 15
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
118

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Comments (2)

  • Avatar

    Frank Youngwerth

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    Always enjoy your report, Craig. Your writing style is excellent. Wanted to make you aware of an up and comer, my grandson Caleb Youngwerth. A few weeks ago this 9 year old runner (soon to be 10) ran his first 10 K in Wisconsin. He had been running 5 K’s since he was about six years old. This was his initial try at 10 K, and his dad tells me he did pretty well. Thought I’d share this with you. Our best…
    Frank and Polly

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Tony Mollica

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    Nice running at Falmouth! Especially because it appears that you trained right through it. I love the picture with Frank, Joan and Meb! Frank Shorter is my running hero and one heckuva nice guy!!

    Reply

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