Saturday, November 17, 2007

Kenyan Way Long Run #6 - One Last Push Before Taper

22.25 Miles, 2:46:39, 7:29 pace, Avg HR = 147, Max HR = 162

I ran with the 3:00 Marathon group again today. They are the fastest Kenyan Way pace group. Our group started out with about seven people, and I'm pretty sure I was the slowest of the group.

I had the "home field advantage" today because the running route featured loops around Rice and Hermann Park. Two people mentioned that it must be difficult to run by your house and not think about going home, but the opposite appeared true for me. I felt stronger since I was running a route that was so familiar.

That's not to say it was easy. In fact it was really hard. Our group of seven slowly dwindled down as people took shorter routes and returned to base. By mile 12 it was only me and two others. It seems as though we picked up the pace each time we dropped someone, and I really struggled to keep up from mile 12 onward. I pretty much abandoned hope of finishing with the other two guys and let them go with about two miles left. But I stuck it out with the fast guys through 20 miles, so I'm pretty happy about that.

This is the last long distance run I'll do before the Dallas Marathon. While that's a bit scary, it's also nice knowing that my workouts will be on the decline from now on. I've run 152.31 miles in the past three weeks (50.77 per week avg., 7.25 per day avg. including rest days) and the down time will be appreciated. Even so, I'd really prefer about two more weeks to train at this level before tapering for Dallas. I've seen tremendous improvements over the past month or two, and I think a couple more weeks would go a long way toward a better time in Dallas.

It's not uncommon for people to get injured during the high mileage training period. I'm lucky because I never suffered an injury that forced me to stop running. I took an extra day off here and there as preventative maintenance, but there was never a day I couldn't run due to injury.

Highlights today:
* 7:09 average pace for the last 10 miles
* 6:50 mile tucked into that distance

Lowlights today:
* feeling of defeat with about 2 miles left, which makes me question my mental and physical endurance for the marathon. I have the speed, but do I have the endurance? And when the endurance ends, do I have the willpower to keep going?
* We took 10 water breaks today, and my adjusted mile pace was 7:43 if I had kept the clock running during those breaks.

8:25, 7:38, 7:28, 7:28, 7:30, 7:18, 7:37, 7:46, 7:22, 7:27, 7:17,
7:16, 7:07, 7:20, 7:07, 7:00, 6:50, 7:14, 7:08, 7:08, 7:23, 7:12

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