The biggest week so far in the Pfitz training cycle for the P.E.I. Marathon ended Monday with a 29 km long run, that was great for 25.5 km and not so hot for a walk-run portion in the final 3.5 km. Still, after racking up 80 km for the week, it was a solid series of runs, efforts that took me to the halfway point of training for the Oct. 20 event.
Most notably, we celebrated my wife’s birthday and enjoyed cake, ice cream, a few other treats and cheered her on as she hit 14 km in her training regiment for the half marathon in P.E.I . as well. To put that into perspective, her longest race to this point is the Hampton 5-miler last September and prior to a month ago, she had never run further than 9 km. Her determination is outstanding. So her progress to P.E.I., a sentimental journey of sorts for both of us, is fantastic.
In addition, both my daughters are gearing up for the Spud Run, which is a one or two lap race (depending on age) the day before the big show gets underway. We went to the local school and banged off 1.0 and 0.5 km respectively. We are not sure how many times we may train, but it was a start!
As for me, I took a while to recover from that successful tempo effort Wednesday, struggling through an 18-km effort Thursday and then enjoying two straight days off (so tired, both nights). That set the stage for an 11 km general run on Sunday, with 8 x100 strides near the end. It went well. The strides are difficult but I worked out at the track (trail-like surface) close to our house and it was a neat way to knock those repeats down. Still, the legs were pretty heavy but I seem to be getting the knack for doing them better each time out.
It was a bigger effort than I anticipated and that caused me to worry some about the long run Monday, where the goal was to go out in 20 per cent more than marathon pace and then come back in 10 per cent above projected marathon pace. That meant about 6:30-6:35 for the first half and 6:00-6:05 for the second half. The temperature was cool at the start and there was a slight breeze. After doing some reading about the importance of closely hitting the splits in the big race, even though it may seem slow, I went out and messed that up as I was ahead of pace the entire day. I took some gels and had some water midway through and then hit the second half in fine style, cruising until the 25-km mark, where facing a large hill (70 metres elevation in 750 metres) I went to walk-run style, walking for 250 metres and then running for 500-750, the rest of the way.
I finished and felt too tired, a tell-tale sign I blew the pacing, especially with slightly tired legs after the stride show.
But it was not that bad, considering I never stopped totally, walked four times and had one break for the washroom. It was the longest run thus far and the first of 4-5 runs at that distance in this plan. I have 32 km slated for Sunday and we’ll see how it goes in the pacing department that day.
Recap Sunday 11 km with strides.
(1-7 km) – 5:46; 5:54; 5:47; 5:47; 5:49; 5:53; 5:48
(8-10) (with 8 strides) 4:51; 5:15; 6:06
(11) – 6:05.
Sunday 29 k – 3:00:33
(1-10) 6:31; 6:16; 6:16; 6:19; 6:24; 6:29; 6:18; 6:17; 6:25; 6:20
(11-20) 6:10; 6:04; 6:09; 6:05; 6:17; 5:59: 6:05; 5:55; 5:56; 5:51
(21-25) 5:54; 5:59; 5:55; 5:54; 5:56
(26-29) 6:39; 6:47; 6:46; 6:24.
On deck: Tuesday-Wednesday – one 11km recovery run and another 18km medium effort run.