Thursday, October 25, 2012


I know I said in my last post that my 20 mile run had put me in an indefatigable state, but unfortunately that was not going to last. A few hours later, after the endorphins had worn off and I had come down from my apparent runner's high, I was feeling the effort, alright.

It was enough to convince me and turn Monday's run into a very easy and relaxed 8-miler, which seems to be my go-to fall back option these days whenever I feel the need for a bit of active recovery. That run went very well and I was fine for the rest of the day, so on Tuesday I felt well enough to do a few more hill repeats. It was pretty much the same workout as the previous week, 60 seconds of fairly hard effort up a hill and a very slow jog down back the hill. Again, I didn't count them, just left it when I started feeling tired.

Actually, that's not quite right. The first few were a struggle, then I got into it, but when I started to feel the effort again, I called it a day. When I counted the spikes on the HR graph afterwards there were 13 of them - one less than last week, and last week the last one had probably been one too many, so I call this a success and a lesson learned.

With the marathon coming up on Monday I will be taking it easy towards the end of this week; the flip side was that I did a bit of cramming at the beginning of the week. I ran 12 miles on Wednesday at 7:20 pace, practising the pace I need to run in Dublin as one of the 3:15 pacers. In case you're wondering why 7:20 when a 3:15 marathon would be 7:26 pace, 1) we want to run about 30 seconds faster than the target time and 2) Garmin miles tend to be about 4 or 5 second off official miles in races, so to be running 7:26 officially you really want the Garmin to display 7:20. The same holds true for all other paces as well or course, for a 3:30 marathon you want to see no slower than 7:55 on your Garmin and when I ran my sub-3 marathon in Vienna last year I knew I had to keep the Garmin at 6:48 pace and not a second slower.

Anyway, the run went well, even with yesterday's hill repeats making their presence known the pace felt relaxed enough to be confident that Monday will go off without a hitch and I won't let my pacees down.

Usually I would be doing my evaluation workouts every second Tuesday, but that would mean doing the next one the day after the marathon, which is not going to happen. I therefore moved it forward to today instead. With the legs feeling a bit heavy I wasn't sure if the numbers would live up to last week's figures, and after a series of very calm mornings today had to be wet and windy, typical. Thankfully the numbers are fine, similar enough to last week when I thought I could see the impact of the sharpening effect from the XC race.
        Mile 1    6:37   HR 161
        Mile 2    6:39   HR 161
        Mile 3    6:43   HR 161
        Mile 4    6:45   HR 161
        Recovery to HR 130: 41 seconds

That's a tad slower than last week and the recovery took a bit longer, but nothing to worry about, I think that can all be explained by the legs still feeling the hill repeats and yesterday's miles. I'm happy enough. It's the next evaluation I'm worried about, because it will show the impact of the Dublin marathon. There's bound to be some (hopefully temporary) regression.

But right now I'm really looking forward to pacing Dublin again. The buzz there is always great. If you happen to be reading this and planning on going with the 3:15 pacers on Monday, make sure to say hello.

22 Oct
8 miles, 1:03:09, 7:54 pace, HR 136
23 Oct
7.7 miles, 1:09:35, 9:02 pace, HR 143
   13 x 60 sec hill repeats
24 Oct
11.3 miles, 1:22:56, 7:20 pace, HR 151
25 Oct
11.8 miles, 1:25:21, 7:14 pace, HR 148
   4 mile eval: 6:37, 6:39, 6:43, 6:45


  1. It'd be interesting to see the numbers if you did do an evaluation run the day after the marathon. Ouch. A local bloke broke 2:20 for the first time in Melbourne, didn't run for 8 days after and said his first run back was a painful cliffy shuffle!

    I saw that Amsterdam has pacers wearing flouro vests, not balloons. I think that's a good compromise. Then if they're running too fast they're not as distracting for those of us who don't like pacers ;)

  2. All the best for your run on Monday. I hope you get lots of runners achieving their sub 3.15 goal.


  3. I hope to say hello, anyway, though you won't be pacing this slowcoach!I am a teeny bit jittery, but really looking forward to it now.

  4. Won't be with the 3:15 pacers but going to give 3:30 a crack this year and see how things go :)

    if I can pull it off it'll be a 28min improvement on last year