31 March 2011

March: Short mileage, higher speed

Here's the stats for March.

Distance: 212 miles
Average Pace: 7:35
Days run: 23
Average Distance per run: 9.1 miles

I was hoping to be around 240 this month but I'll take 212 given that my pace was :11 per mile faster then February. That and I ran a major half marathon PR without tapering. Actually, considering my academic load, 212 is awesome.

Last time, at grad school...

I was working on finishing my Master's project and preparing for finals. Still don't know how I did on the final (my prof is a really really really slow grader). I did pass my Master's project! Paper and presentation=A!

Okay, back to the real reason you are all reading this blog: running. The more I think about it, the happier I am with my half marathon PR. It gives me so much hope for Boston. My training has been awesome, I've nailed my key workouts and my tune-up race. Just one last 20 miler tomorrow and then its 2 weeks of smooth sailing. Well....two weeks of less running and trying to fight off taper-madness!

I'm trying to get a post together on my thoughts about Boston. Its a big thing for me to be running it. Hopefully that will be up sometime this weekend.

We'll see you next week. Same Bat time, same Bat channel!

30 March 2011


Its been a few weeks since I've ran any intervals. Well, any short (<1000m) intervals. Maybe its been a month. Anyway, I totally nailed the workout today.

The forecast called for lots of rain so I went to the gym for my workout. True story: the rain never materialized so I could have hit up the outdoor track. Anyway, I picked a tm for my 3 mile warm up. Then I went to the indoor track for 10x800m @ 5k pace. It went well. I ran fairly consistent times...even if they were faster than 5k pace. Since the track is an odd distance, I walked about 220m between repeats. That translated to a little more than half the time of each interval. After, I hit up another tm for a 2 mile cool down.

Splits: 2:52, 2:48, 2:51, 2:51, 2:52, 2:47, 2:50, 2:53, 2:51, 2:46
Average: 2:50

The last time I ran 10x800, I averaged 2:55. Yay for progress!

Between this workout and my hm a few weeks ago, I'm totally stoked for Boston! Speaking of which, I decided on my goal, 3:03:23 (sub-7:00/mi)

19 days!

26 March 2011

Race Pics

Here are a few of my pics from the race.

Hitting the lap button, Mile 13

Cresting the last hill


21 March 2011

Its gotta be the shorts

I mean, come on. I bought these pink shorts (photos will be up once they are posted by the race) in October and haven't had a bad race in them yet. First, I ran my two best 5k's since high school, then I outright won a 10k. Now, I set a 10k and half marathon PR in the same race! Well, ok. Maybe its not just the shorts. It could be the 50-60 mile weeks I've been putting in since the year began.

Yesterday I ran the Mercer Island Half Marathon for the second year in a row. Last year I didn't know what to expect for time or the course. I ran a PR their last year (1:31:52), despite not knowing how hilly it was. The entire course is rolling hills with a few larger ones (course profile below).

Having ran the course before, this year I knew when to hold back a little and when to push. I wasn't sure what kind of shape I was in but I knew I at least wanted to run a PR (sub-1:27). I made a plan to open up a little on the down hills and just hold my pace on the uphills.

Last year, the race was just a fitness test to see what my training paces for Portland would be. This year, it was a little more than a fitness test. True, I wanted to use it as a fitness test/benchmark, but I also wanted to get a realistic idea of what I could run at Boston.

The weather could not have been better. Upper 30's/low 40's and sunny. I lined up in the middle of the 6:01-7:00 pace coral. After a few minutes in the coral, we were off. The first mile went a little quicker than I wanted but I was able to settle into a comfortable pace after that. Or so I thought. Based on my splits, me thinks someone place the 3rd mile marker in the wrong spot. Because I didn't pass many people that mile and I didn't get passed much during mile 4. Had those been actual splits, I probably would have been passed a lot during mile 4. I think its more likely that I ran fairly even splits in the low 6:20's.

Mile 1-6:18
Mile 2-6:39
Mile 3-5:29
Mile 4-7:13

Somewhere between mile 5 and mile 6 I started to pass the half marathon walkers, who started ninety minute before me. Clue number one that this was going to be a good race. Clue number two: my 10k PR mid race, 39:40. Being right next to Seattle, their are a lot of UW fans on MI. At one of the aid stations, a 12 year old boy was passing out water and telling everyone the Huskies were beating UNC. Luckily, UNC pulled it out in the second half and won (I love UW but I had UNC beating them on my bracket so...)

Mile 5-6:14
Mile 6-6:21
Mile 7-6:27
Mile 8-6:29

I noticed my pace gradually slowing and leveling off around 6:30. I was completely ok with this. I still felt strong and started passing other runners. I spotted one a ways off around mile 8 and made a goal to catch him before the finish line. On the last big climb (mile 11-12ish) I caught him. Coming up on the last uphill, right at mile 13, I was spent. I gave it everything I had to not get passed by anyone. It worked, and I came away with a major 2:54 PR! While I was getting my chip taken, the guy I passed on that last big climb came up and said he tried to catch me at the end but couldn't get there. I told him that I spotted him early on and tried to catch him. It definitely boosted my confidence that he tried to catch me and I had enough in the tank to hold him off.

Mile 10-6:29
Mile 11-6:21
Mile 12-6:41
Mile 13-6:35
Total-1:24:40 (unofficial)

My official time was 1:24:36. Somehow, I placed 42nd OA and 3rd AG! In all I am very happy with this race. I made a race plane, stuck to it and was rewarded with a great time. It also gave me a huge boost of confidence for Boston. Though now I have no idea what my goal for that race should be. Good thing I've got four weeks to figure it out!

This week is going to be a little easier as I recover from the race. Next week will be my last hard week/60+mi week before I begin my two week taper.

20 March 2011


Quick and dirty version: Two new PR's.
10K (en route to HM) 39:40
Half Marathon 1:24:40

RR later today.

14 March 2011

So far so good

This post could be much longer but I've still got some studying to do for my modern algebra final tomorrow. So its a little on the short side.

First things first, I PASSED my 501 Presentation/Thesis Defense! Now I just have to make some corrections on my thesis and I'll be able to graduate in June :)

Running is going well this month. I've got in some great tempo runs. Like yesterday, 4 miles @6:24 pace. And one good long run this afternoon, 20 miles @7:51 pace. My cycle for Boston is shaping up nicely. We'll see how nice after my half marathon this Sunday. I've got 3 goals:
1. Course PR (1:31:52, '10)
2. PR (1:27:30, '10)
3. 1:25:xx
The last one is totally a dream goal, but I'm including it anyway.

Last but definitely not least, Boston bib numbers came out today! Bib number is in the 4000's which means coral 5 since they started the numbers at 101 this year. Yay for coral 5!