Saturday, June 14, 2008

Calm Before The Storm.....

Recovery week #2 comes to an end

I know that after the marathon, my body needs time to rest and recover. So I took it easy; I went to a few karate classes, I ran some short runs. But boy, I feel like a slacker!!! I worked so hard for my conditioning, strength and endurance that I hate to think that I could be "losing it" by taking time off from karate/running. I hate "rest days" on my workout log!!!

But thankfully, this brief respite is coming to an end. It's time to start training for the NYC marathon!! Woo Hoo!!! For San Diego, I used a 16 week, training program (modified Hanson's). But, there were a few flaws in that program. First, I ran into some scheduling challenges which didn't allow me to get in as many long, long runs as I needed. Second, I did only 1 "hill" training run. And boy did I paid for that!!

So, for the NYC marathon, I've made a few modifications.

  • I've extended the "training" from 16 weeks to 20 weeks. This will allow me to get in at least (2) 20-milers and (1) 22-miler run.

  • I'm increasing from 4 runs a week to 5 runs a week

  • 1-Speed Workout

  • 1-Hill Workout

  • 1-LSD Workout (and no, that's not the drug!!! it's Long, Slow, Distance run)

For my 1st marathon, I did a little bit of speed work; primarily interval runs. I think it was helpful, but more so for my timed karate runs than for my marathon. For NYC, I'm going to do more tempo runs. Tempo or "marathon pace" runs will mean I do warm-up and cool-down runs at a "relaxed" pace, but the miles in between are run at the pace I want to run for the marathon. And for NYC, I AM going to finish in less than 5 hours, which means my marathon pace will have to be 11:27 min/mile or better. So I will train with a tempo pace of 10 min/mile, or maybe faster!!! or, with the summer temps in the 90's, maybe slower!!?!?!

Hill workout is probably the area I need to focus on the most. Yes, I know. Hill training in Florida is an oxymoron!!! Well, I have 2 options for hill training. The first is the treadmill. Boring!!!! The second option is to train on the intracoastal bridges. But, that means I will be inhaling lots of car exhaust. So which is worse, boredome or car exhaust?

I'm excited about my next marathon. I'm excited about running the NYC marathon. It's only 2nd to the Boston marathon in prestige, and with my run times, I won't be making it to Boston anytime soon! My only concern is the timing. The marathon is right around the time when it will be "Power Week" for karate. Power week is the actual black belt test where all of our skills and drills are tested over a week period.

Getting my 2nd degree black belt is very important to me. And I don't want to have to chose one over the other. I want it all! So far, 2008 has been a tremendous year. Already, I have accomplished so much! I ran my 1st 1/2 marathon; I ran my 1st marathon; I stopped a 25 year smoking habit and I took on a new job that is both challenging and rewarding. I know I can do anything I put my mind to. So I WILL run the NYC marathon and I WILL work as hard as I can to get my 2nd degree black belt!

Run long,
Modesty, Courtesy, Integrity, Self Control, Perseverence, Indominable Spirit

aka blonderx


  1. Dani - Congrats again on your marathon, your goal setting, and your blog. It's so well done. I put mine together with help from people in my office: I can't imagine trying to puzzle all this stuff out on your own. Very impressive. I think it's worth adding to your list of accomplishments.

  2. It was great to find your blog (via twitter) and so many things that I relate belt...trying to break 5 hours in the 2008 ING New York City Marathon! You rock!!! I look forward to seeing your progress and cheering for you from NYC.

  3. Hey, awesome Dani, I have an idea. Hill running is basically a matter of the body having to work twice as hard to run because it's an incline. Why not take advantage of what YOU have that most people don't -- running in the sand? Just a thought. I wonder if that would duplicate the difficulty. I haven't figured out yet if I am dumb or smart in life so I am just throwing that out there.

    The two toughest hills of NYCM for me were (a) First Avenue, steady incline from Miles 16-19, and (b) Fifth Avenue, which is kind of gradual getting to Central Park at about Mile 22-23. The good news is that there are two key hills in Central Park, and the hardest one does NOT come into play and the other one (Cat Hill) you only have to run down (instead of up). Any bridges mean a little climb but overall it's not a killer-hill course.

    I learned a great tip from my Team for Kids coach last year about hills. When one is coming up, never look up ahead to see where it ends...look down and focus on one foot in front of the other...and count from 100 backwards. I always lose track of the number but somehow it often works. :)