Thursday, February 3, 2011

Marathon #4 Training Complete

As I have learned in the past, I can predict fairly well how I might do in a marathon by reflecting upon my final month of training. Without further ado, here's a summary of my progress:
01/09-01/15: 45.49 @ 8:17/mi
01/16-01/22: 36.42 @ 8:27/mi (46.61 @ 8:15/mi)
01/23-01/29: 30.02 @ 8:06/mi (19.83 @ 8:21/mi)
01/30-02/05: 20.26 @ 7:40/mi
Average pace for month: 8:11/mi

Note the data in parenthesis as it indicates the true distance total / average pace for these weeks. The reason for this notation is that I swapped my long and short runs over the weekend straddling these weeks...and I have juggled the data as if I had run them on their originally scheduled days for consistency when comparing this data against my previous marathon attempts. An unexpectedly fast 14 miler during that particular weekend makes direct year-after-year comparisons especially problematic.

Remember that I showed steady pace improvement over the final weeks before my last two marathons. Fortunately, this past week suggests I did not peak too early.

Month before the Los Angeles Marathon in 2010:
02/21-02/27: 45.41 @ 8:47/mi
02/28-03/06: 36.16 @ 8:23/mi
03/07-03/13: 30.11 @ 8:08/mi
03/14-03/20: 20.17 @ 7:59/mi
Average for month: 8:24/mi
Average race pace: 8:22/mi

Month before the Long Beach Marathon in 2009:
09/13-09/19: 45.74 @ 8:51/mi
09/20-09/26: 39.09 @ 8:33/mi
09/27-10/03: 29.06 @ 8:24/mi
10/04-10/10: 20.29 @ 8:03/mi
Average pace: 8:33/mi
Average race pace: 8:31/mi

The good news is that, despite having gotten a late start on my marathon training schedule, missing a week due to illness, and consistently falling short of some of the longer distance targets, I appear to have gotten myself back on track over the final month...and my average pace implies I should easily match if not beat my previous personal record setting pace. I am slightly concerned that my feet are a bit more banged up than usual (a touch of PF in both feet, but not yet a factor while running) and that my right ankle continues to bother me over longer distances, but, again, these factors have not affected my stats.

Averaging 8:15 per mile at Surf City seems a reasonable goal. Ironically, it just happens to be the pace target I initially set (and have not yet changed) for my Garmin Virtual Partner!

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