Monday, July 4, 2016

July 4

Well, I did it again.

As much as I intend to keep things updated, I often don't have the motivation to write. Time can be an issue but mostly it's that I don't don't consider my training interesting. I'm also not as obsessive about it as I was in the past so I'm no longer sweating every little detail. While I do have a plan as far as distance and intensity I'm more open to scaling back as my body tells me.

What's new you ask?

For starters, I finally broke the 4 hour barrier with a 3:56:37 finish at the Phoenix Marathon back in February. Conditions were perfect on race day with temps around 50 for the 6:30 am start. The race was well organized and other than having to be up at 3 to drive 45 minutes to get on a shuttle to the start I couldn't ask for better. I just wish that they had a drop area with a shuttle nearer to the start because this would have gained me at least an extra hours worth of sleep since I live relatively close by.

Logistics aside, everything went great. I was on an early shuttle so I was there before it got too crowed which afforded for a good spot around one of the many fires they had for us. This also meant that I had plenty of time to relax and stretch before things got going.

The one thing that drew me to this race was that it is mostly downhill save for a pretty good ascent around the 4.5 mile mark along with some smaller hills toward the end..

To say I was happy with the outcome is an understatement. Although I stopped a half a dozen times to go, I was able to run the entire course without bonking while maintaining fairly consistent splits. This actually provided me with the confidence that I could BQ.

With this success, I began to look into finding a race my next BQ attempt. Having a few options for September races that a fast qualifiers, I decided on running the Revel Big Cottonwood Marathon in Salt Lake City UT which features an over 5000 foot descent.

My thinking here is that I felt great on the downhill for Phoenix so why not try for something bigger. One of the issues I did have in that race was that I paid the price in my quads for not having done any hill training.

For this race I'll be ready because fortunately I have Usery Mountain only about 30 minutes away. While not nearly as big or steep, it gives me a nice 3 mile stretch with a 600+ foot drop to train on. I've already done it a half dozen times since the beginning of May and intend to do it at least that many more in the coming 2 months.

Other than this nothing big has happened run-wise. The only other race I have done was a 5K back in April which wasn't anything spectacular as well as participated in the United Relay. Pretty much I have been logging quality miles as I close in on 700 for the year and most importantly remaining injury free.

On the nutrition side of things, I've been pretty good save for a junk weekend for Memorial Day. I've had a couple Inside Tracker tests and overall things look pretty good. Need to work on my iron absorbsion but other than that I'm good.

Still, even though I have been eating clean, I'm struggling with my weight which has been between 155 and 160 for a while now. I'd prefer to be down to 145 or less fully hydrated for race day.

A lot probably has to do with stress at work but mostly because I do a piss poor job of getting to bed when I should. I seriously need to get into the habit of going to bed before 9 instead of staying up watching TV and using my phone. Problem it, when I do get to bed early it takes me too long to get to sleep so I wind up tossing around for a while.

One last thing to mention is that I've about hit my 4 year runniversary. I can't find my training log but I started running again some time around this holiday weekend back in 2012 and have run about 4000 miles since then. Not too shabby if I do say so.

What I'm the most proud of though is that Christine has kept up with her running over the past year and has shown steady progress as she ups her mileage, now in the 60s per month, and has her 5K time down to 41:26. Bravo

So there you have it; nothing too exciting. Just happy that I can get out and run.

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