Today I nailed another 22 miler in 2 hours and 45 minutes. It was easily my best long run of the year as it consumed very little effort on my part. The long distance training is starting to pay off.
Last week after my little 1 mile fun downhill race on Saturday, I was unable to muster up much energy the next day for a long run. Good enough. I had run a 22 miler the week before.
Yesterday I wasn't terribly thrilled at the prospect of waking up early for a long run, but the weather was my savior. Without an alarm, I got up at 6:30 a.m. and was out the door 15 minutes later under early morning cloud cover that stuck with my for about 80% of my run. It was a nice, cool morning run that I was able to really enjoy.
My marathon training started 3 months ago when I committed to run the Singapore Marathon in early December. But my friend may or may not run the marathon now due to work demands, so I used that as a cue to bail out (thus saving me about $3,000 in travel expense!) and find a more local race.
My local options are the Santa Barbara Marathon that I ran last year, the inaugural Camarillo Marathon next month or the Malibu Marathon on November 14th. I opted to try something new, leaving Santa Barbara out of the running. Camarillo sounds like a nice flat course but is too soon for me. So I'm doing Malibu!
The Malibu Marathon starts at the Camarillo Airport and heads down past Naval Base Ventura County to PCH, where it runs some hills along the ocean to Zuma. It does not appear to be a particularly fast course and there appears to be about a 200 foot climb from mile 18 to 24, but its all downhill after that. I'm not looking to do a personal best...my goal is to just go under 3 hours and have some fun.
So now that I have a new marathon in the works that is only 9 weeks away, I've got about 6 more weeks of training left before a 3 week taper. Working within the bounds of my son's Saturday soccer games, birthday parties and other activities, I used the CVG listing of running events to map out a schedule that intertwines long runs with races.
So my current weekend long run and race schedule is:
Sept 19th: 5K Race in Camarillo - To start developing some speed; a 10K would have been better but a local one wasn't available.
Sept 26th: Long run (20+)
Oct 3rd - Camarillo Half Marathon - Goal is to run at a pace that translates into a 2:58 or better marathon. My rule of thumb is that a half marathon times 2.1 = projected marathon time. For me this means I'll target running the half in less than 1 hour, 25 minutes (2:58 = 178 minutes, divided by 2.1 = 85 minutes).
Oct 10th - Long run (20+)
Oct 17th - 5K Race in Westlake Village - Again, would be nice to do a 10K but I want to stay local.
Oct 24th - This is only 3 week pre-marathon, which is getting pretty close. I'll probably run 16 but I'll see how I feel. Doing a 22 miler today in my opinion and experience WILL NOT help my marathon performance at this point but some may disagree.
Oct 31st - Not aware of any local races this weekend so I will probably opt to do 10 to 12 miles at marathon pace.
Nov 7th - We're gaining an hour of sleep this day (YAY, my favorite day of the year!) and I'll do at most 8 miles. Nothing too strenuous.
Nov 14th - Malibu Marathon